Jennifer Blesh

Ecosystem Management for Resilient and Multifunctional Food Systems

Jennifer Blesh, University of Michigan

Friday.  18.Nov.2016. 2:00-3:00pm.

SS2125. 100 St. George Street

Tea. Coffee. Cookies.

ABSTRACT In a context where agriculture is a leading cause of global change, biodiversity loss, and water pollution, developing more resilient food systems is central to addressing concurrent food, energy, and environmental crises. This presentation explores the role of ecological science in building agroecosystem resilience. I will discuss examples from research assessing how different management practices impact carbon and nutrient cycling in the U.S. Corn Belt and the Brazilian Cerrado biome. In particular, synergies with frameworks addressing power dynamics that influence ecological processes provide a means of better incorporating vulnerability and social justice into resilience assessments. Resilience thinking must focus not only on the persistence, but also on the adaptability and transformability of social-ecological systems as a conceptual framework for addressing the multidimensional challenges of food systems. I will describe factors at multiple scales that support or constrain transitions to agroecological management in the interstices of these two highly industrialized agricultural landscapes.

Intersections: Lectures, etc. Department of Geography and Planning, University of Toronto

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