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Title: Structuring wicked problems in transdisciplinary research using the Social-Ecological Systems framework: an application to the montado system, Alentejo, Portugal.
Authors: Guimarães, Helena
Guiomar, Nuno
Godinho, Sérgio
Surova, Diana
Pinto-Correia, Teresa
Sandberg, A.
Ravera, Federica
Varanda, Marta
Keywords: Transdisciplinarity
Complex Systems
Socio-ecological framework
Issue Date: 2018
Publisher: Journal of Cleaner Production
Citation: Guimarães H., Guiomar N., Surova D., Godinho S., Pinto-Correia T., Sandberg A., Ravera F. and Varanda M., 2018. Structuring wicked problems in transdisciplinary research using the Social-Ecological Systems framework: an application to the montado system, Alentejo, Portugal. Journal of Cleaner Production, vol.191: 417-428. DOI:10.1016/jclepro.2018.04.200
Abstract: The aspiration to understand the environment as a whole and to deal with real world problems have inspired some groundbreaking examples of transdisciplinarity (TD). The core idea of TD is that different academic disciplines work jointly with practitioners to solve a real-world problem. The first step of TD implies an intimate and iterative association with the context that implies dealing with an issue complexity. To this end we applied the Social-Ecological Systems (SES) framework. The application was developed considering a sustainability problem in the montado SES of the Alentejo region in Portugal and the ambition of a research center to develop TD to deal with the recorded decline of the system. The application was based on literature review and qualitative and quantitative data collected in a number of research projects dealing with the montado land use system. Results show that the lack of consensus regarding the system boundaries, the diversified mental models and the disconnection between policy making and system singularities are some of the conditions that need to be considered and that can hinder TD efforts. On the other hand, the existing social capital and leadership role might balance the identified obstacles. Knowledge gaps were identified (e.g. typology of montado, higher understanding of the governance system) and the need to develop tailored TD process that are cost effective and efficient. This work argues for the active use of the SES framework in TD in natural resource management Future research could focus on the framework utility in developing tools to evaluate and monitor TD research.
Type: article
Appears in Collections:MED - Publicações - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais Com Arbitragem Científica

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