Social-ecological resilience in the Solomon Islands: adaptation or maladaptation to environmental change?
Speaker: Dr Ioan Fazey (Lecturer Sustainable Development, School of Geography and Geosciences, University of St Andrews,)
Adaptation is important for reducing the vulnerability of local communities to global change. Many responses, however, can worsen existing problems or reduce capacities to respond to future events. This paper reports on the trajectories of vulnerability in Kahua communities in Solomon Islands and asks whether current responses to environmental change are maladaptive or adaptive. Over the past five years, interdisciplinary work has been investigating a range of subjects from perceptions of change, valuation of ecosystem services, education, and cross-community governance. Findings suggest that changes are driven by a relatively small number of key drivers (population growth, desire for monetary prosperity) which are acting synergistically in combination with increasing opportunities for income generation to reinforce and increase vulnerability to future change. The presentation will outline key findings, then open up the discussion to consider how ecological modelling and related approaches might be able to add further insights to understanding the Kahua social-ecological syst.