Biology Spring Guest Lecture - Valery Forbes
Valery E. Forbes, from University of Nebraska-Lincoln, will be coming to Lund to give the Biology Spring lecture titled, "Assessing risks to ecosystem services -- opportunities and challenges."
Environmental protection goals are increasingly framed in terms of ecosystem services delivery, with a recognition that these services connect to ecosystem structure and dynamics. However, ecological science has not been delivering the kind of information needed for achieving environmental protection. Currently, there is interest among ecological scientists and among agencies in managing ecosystem services; however, the advocated approaches are based on overly simplistic representations of ecosystems that assume linearity and ignore important system feedbacks (e.g., adverse outcome pathways).
Recent advances in computer science are facilitating the development of detailed ecological models that can capture relevant properties of ecosystems in a realistic manner. Because these kinds of models can become very detailed and complex, they risk becoming too specific and may be difficult to understand and interpret. Therefore, a primary challenge is to develop models that are sufficiently complex to deliver effective management, but sufficiently transparent to provide effective educational tools and to command the confidence of environmental managers.
I will argue that, in order to do a better job of managing the environment, we need a new generation of models that are mechanistic and predictive, broadly applicable across ecosystem types, sensitive to the needs of a range of stakeholders, and that can be readily applied by environmental decision makers and in education/outreach activities. A particular challenge will be to integrate the outputs of ecological models with inclusive socioeconomic models to optimize the effective management of multiple ecosystem services and facilitate transparent policy decisions that are more explicit in their use of scientific evidence and public values.
10 may 2012 13.15
Blå hallen, Ekologihuset, Sölvegatan 37, Lund