Category Archives: Thresholds

On the Sensitivity of Collective Action to Uncertainty about Climate Tipping Points

Previous research shows that collective action to avoid a catastrophic threshold, such as a climate “tipping point,” is unaffected by uncertainty about the impact of crossing the threshold but that collective action collapses if the location of the threshold is … Continue reading

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Phase Transitions

(Chapters 9, 12, 13, 14 & 16) Ecosystems are complex and adaptive, displaying nontrivial forms of organization in both space and time. An important component of change in ecological systems involves the rapid response of some communities to slow changes … Continue reading

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Early-warning signals for Critical Transitions

Complex dynamical systems, ranging from ecosystems to financial markets and the climate, can have tipping points at which a sudden shift to a contrasting dynamical regime may occur. Although predicting such critical points before they are reached is extremely difficult, … Continue reading

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Anticipating Critical Transitions

Tipping points in complex systems may imply risks of unwanted collapse, but also opportunities for positive change. Our capacity to navigate such risks and opportunities can be boosted by combining emerging insights from two unconnected fields of research. One line … Continue reading

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Resilience Thinking and Large-scale Transformations in Social-ecological Systems

Despite pleas for major change, there is still a lack of understanding of the mechanisms and patterns involved, and of the conditions under which critical transformations can emerge. This lack of understanding greatly decreases the chances for successfully navigating transformation … Continue reading

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Are We Entering an Era of Concatenated Global Crises?

An increase in the frequency and intensity of environmental crises associated with accelerating human-induced global change is of substantial concern to policy makers. The potential impacts, especially on the poor, are exacerbated in an increasingly connected world that enables the … Continue reading

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