Adaptive Management and Watersheds

A Social Science Perspective

Catherine Allan, Allan Curtis, George Stankey, Bruce Shindler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

41 Citations (Scopus)
15 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Adaptive management is often proposed as the most effective way to manage complex watersheds. However, our experience suggests that social and institutional factors constrain the search for, and integration of, the genuine learning that defines adaptive management. Drawing on our work as social scientists, and on a guided panel discussion at a recent AWRA conference, we suggest that watershed-scale adaptive management must be recognised as a radical departure from established ways of managing natural resources if it is to achieve its promise. Successful implementation will require new ways of thinking about management, new organizational structures and new implementation processes and tools. Adaptive management encourages scrutiny of prevailing social and organizational norms and this is unlikely to occur without a change in the culture of natural resource management and research. Planners and managers require educational, administrative, and political support as they seek to understand and implement adaptive management. Learning and reflection must be valued and rewarded, and for a established where learning through adaptive management can be shared and explored. The creation of new institutions, including educational curricula, organizational policies and practices, and professional norms and beliefs, will require support from within bureaucracies and from politicians. For adaptive management to be effective researchers and managers alike must work together at the watershed-scale to bridge the gaps between theory and practice, and between social and technical understandings of watersheds and the people who occupy and use them.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)166-174
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American Water Resources Association
Volume44
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Fingerprint

adaptive management
watershed
learning
implementation process
bureaucracy
social science
curriculum
natural resource

Cite this

@article{305c9350b5f94021b94e66a518ef0124,
title = "Adaptive Management and Watersheds: A Social Science Perspective",
abstract = "Adaptive management is often proposed as the most effective way to manage complex watersheds. However, our experience suggests that social and institutional factors constrain the search for, and integration of, the genuine learning that defines adaptive management. Drawing on our work as social scientists, and on a guided panel discussion at a recent AWRA conference, we suggest that watershed-scale adaptive management must be recognised as a radical departure from established ways of managing natural resources if it is to achieve its promise. Successful implementation will require new ways of thinking about management, new organizational structures and new implementation processes and tools. Adaptive management encourages scrutiny of prevailing social and organizational norms and this is unlikely to occur without a change in the culture of natural resource management and research. Planners and managers require educational, administrative, and political support as they seek to understand and implement adaptive management. Learning and reflection must be valued and rewarded, and for a established where learning through adaptive management can be shared and explored. The creation of new institutions, including educational curricula, organizational policies and practices, and professional norms and beliefs, will require support from within bureaucracies and from politicians. For adaptive management to be effective researchers and managers alike must work together at the watershed-scale to bridge the gaps between theory and practice, and between social and technical understandings of watersheds and the people who occupy and use them.",
keywords = "Open access version available, Adaptive management, Social science perspectives, Water resources",
author = "Catherine Allan and Allan Curtis and George Stankey and Bruce Shindler",
note = "Imported on 12 Apr 2017 - DigiTool details were: Journal title (773t) = Journal of the American Water Resources Association. ISSNs: 1093-474X;",
year = "2008",
doi = "10.1111/j.1752-1688.2007.00145.x",
language = "English",
volume = "44",
pages = "166--174",
journal = "Water Resources Bulletin",
issn = "1093-474X",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "1",

}

Adaptive Management and Watersheds : A Social Science Perspective. / Allan, Catherine; Curtis, Allan; Stankey, George; Shindler, Bruce.

In: Journal of the American Water Resources Association, Vol. 44, No. 1, 2008, p. 166-174.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Adaptive Management and Watersheds

T2 - A Social Science Perspective

AU - Allan, Catherine

AU - Curtis, Allan

AU - Stankey, George

AU - Shindler, Bruce

N1 - Imported on 12 Apr 2017 - DigiTool details were: Journal title (773t) = Journal of the American Water Resources Association. ISSNs: 1093-474X;

PY - 2008

Y1 - 2008

N2 - Adaptive management is often proposed as the most effective way to manage complex watersheds. However, our experience suggests that social and institutional factors constrain the search for, and integration of, the genuine learning that defines adaptive management. Drawing on our work as social scientists, and on a guided panel discussion at a recent AWRA conference, we suggest that watershed-scale adaptive management must be recognised as a radical departure from established ways of managing natural resources if it is to achieve its promise. Successful implementation will require new ways of thinking about management, new organizational structures and new implementation processes and tools. Adaptive management encourages scrutiny of prevailing social and organizational norms and this is unlikely to occur without a change in the culture of natural resource management and research. Planners and managers require educational, administrative, and political support as they seek to understand and implement adaptive management. Learning and reflection must be valued and rewarded, and for a established where learning through adaptive management can be shared and explored. The creation of new institutions, including educational curricula, organizational policies and practices, and professional norms and beliefs, will require support from within bureaucracies and from politicians. For adaptive management to be effective researchers and managers alike must work together at the watershed-scale to bridge the gaps between theory and practice, and between social and technical understandings of watersheds and the people who occupy and use them.

AB - Adaptive management is often proposed as the most effective way to manage complex watersheds. However, our experience suggests that social and institutional factors constrain the search for, and integration of, the genuine learning that defines adaptive management. Drawing on our work as social scientists, and on a guided panel discussion at a recent AWRA conference, we suggest that watershed-scale adaptive management must be recognised as a radical departure from established ways of managing natural resources if it is to achieve its promise. Successful implementation will require new ways of thinking about management, new organizational structures and new implementation processes and tools. Adaptive management encourages scrutiny of prevailing social and organizational norms and this is unlikely to occur without a change in the culture of natural resource management and research. Planners and managers require educational, administrative, and political support as they seek to understand and implement adaptive management. Learning and reflection must be valued and rewarded, and for a established where learning through adaptive management can be shared and explored. The creation of new institutions, including educational curricula, organizational policies and practices, and professional norms and beliefs, will require support from within bureaucracies and from politicians. For adaptive management to be effective researchers and managers alike must work together at the watershed-scale to bridge the gaps between theory and practice, and between social and technical understandings of watersheds and the people who occupy and use them.

KW - Open access version available

KW - Adaptive management

KW - Social science perspectives

KW - Water resources

U2 - 10.1111/j.1752-1688.2007.00145.x

DO - 10.1111/j.1752-1688.2007.00145.x

M3 - Article

VL - 44

SP - 166

EP - 174

JO - Water Resources Bulletin

JF - Water Resources Bulletin

SN - 1093-474X

IS - 1

ER -