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  • © 2012

Resilience Practice

Building Capacity to Absorb Disturbance and Maintain Function


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  • Strongest selling point for Resilience Practice is the success of Resilience Thinking

  • Readers of that volume will welcome another book with the same accessible style and more concrete practical examples

  • As a reviewer said, the book offers cutting-edge science by one of the most creative scientists of his generation (Walker)

  • Authors have identified strong collaborators for the case studies; they will be strong selling points

  • Focus on developing countries is important facet that should attract readers

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Table of contents (11 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-xv
  2. Thresholds on the Range:

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 27-34
  3. Describing the System

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 35-53
  4. From Taos to Bali and Sri Lanka:

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 55-65
  5. Assessing Resilience

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 67-105
  6. Assessing Resilience for “the Plan”:

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 107-116
  7. Managing Resilience

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 117-134
  8. People and Pen Shells, Marine Parks and Rules:

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 135-144
  9. Practicing Resilience in Different Ways

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 145-167
  10. Out of the Swamp:

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 169-183
  11. A Resilient World

    • Brian Walker, David Salt
    Pages 185-199
  12. Back Matter

    Pages 201-227

About this book

In 2006, Resilience Thinking addressed an essential question: As the natural systems that sustain us are subjected to shock after shock, how much can they take and still deliver the services we need from them? This idea caught the attention of both the scientific community and the general public.

In Resilience Practice, authors Brian Walker and David Salt take the notion of resilience one step further, applying resilience thinking to real-world situations and exploring how systems can be managed to promote and sustain resilience.

The book begins with an overview and introduction to resilience thinking and then takes the reader through the process of describing systems, assessing their resilience, and intervening as appropriate. Following each chapter is a case study of a different type of social-ecological system and how resilience makes a difference to that system in practice. The final chapters explore resilience in other arenas, including on a global scale.

Resilience Practice will help people with an interest in the “coping capacity” of systems—from farms and catchments to regions and nations—to better understand how resilience thinking can be put into practice. It offers an easy-to-read but scientifically robust guide through the real-world application of the concept of resilience and is a must read for anyone concerned with the management of systems at any scale.


  • Coastal fisheries
  • Green revolution
  • Natural resource management
  • Resilience assessment
  • Wetlands
  • climate change
  • Fish and Wildlife Biology

Authors and Affiliations

  • CSIRO Ecosystem Science, Australia

    Brian Walker

  • Australian National University, Australia

    David Salt

About the authors

Brian Walker is past Chief of Australia's CSIRO Division of Wildlife and Ecology and is currently the Program Director of the Resilience Alliance.  Walker has degrees in agriculture and ecology from universities in South Africa and Canada. His interests are in ecosystem function and dynamics, particularly in regard to resilience of tropical savannas and rangelands. He lectured at the University of Zimbabwe for six years and was then Professor of Botany and Director of the Centre for Resource Ecology at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg until 1985, when he moved to Australia as Chief of the CSIRO Division of Wildlife and Ecology.

He was leader of the International Decade of the Tropics Program on Responses of Savannas to Stress and Disturbance from 1984 to 1990, and of the Global Change and Terrestrial Ecosystems Project of the IGBP from 1989 to 1998, and is a past Chair of the Board of the Beijer International Institute for Ecological Economics in the Swedish Academy of Science. He has co-authored two books, edited seven, written over 150 scientific papers and is on the editorial boards of five international journals.

He received the Ecological Society of Australia's Gold Medal for 1999. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering.

Bibliographic Information