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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Ocean and Coastal Management, May 2015, Vol.108, pp.13-19
    Description: Sustainability is an important concept currently at the forefront of many policy agendas. Yet, the science of sustainability is still inchoate: What does it means for a system to be sustainable? What are the features of sustainable systems and how can they be quantified? The systems we deal with – ecological, economic, social, and integrated – are complex and operate by maintaining functional gradients away from equilibrium. While there are basic requirements regarding availability of input and output boundary flows and sinks, sustainability is centrally a feature of system configuration. A system must provide a basis of positionally-balancing, wholeness-enhancing centers of activity. One aspect of this system balance is between efficiency and redundancy which can be measured in ecological and economic systems using information-based network analysis. Specifically, the robustness indicator as developed by Robert Ulanowicz and colleagues offers deep insight into the structure and function of these self-sustaining autocatalytic configurations (through constant flows of energy and matter). In this paper, I overview these concepts and methods and provide examples from economic and ecological systems and discuss the meaning of the differences in outcome.
    Keywords: Oceanography
    ISSN: 0964-5691
    E-ISSN: 1873-524X
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: Ocean and Coastal Management, 2015, Vol.108, p.13(7)
    Description: To link to full-text access for this article, visit this link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ocecoaman.2014.06.020 Byline: Brian D. Fath Abstract: Sustainability is an important concept currently at the forefront of many policy agendas. Yet, the science of sustainability is still inchoate: What does it means for a system to be sustainable? What are the features of sustainable systems and how can they be quantified? The systems we deal with - ecological, economic, social, and integrated - are complex and operate by maintaining functional gradients away from equilibrium. While there are basic requirements regarding availability of input and output boundary flows and sinks, sustainability is centrally a feature of system configuration. A system must provide a basis of positionally-balancing, wholeness-enhancing centers of activity. One aspect of this system balance is between efficiency and redundancy which can be measured in ecological and economic systems using information-based network analysis. Specifically, the robustness indicator as developed by Robert Ulanowicz and colleagues offers deep insight into the structure and function of these self-sustaining autocatalytic configurations (through constant flows of energy and matter). In this paper, I overview these concepts and methods and provide examples from economic and ecological systems and discuss the meaning of the differences in outcome. Author Affiliation: (a) Biology Department, Towson University, Towson, MD 21252, USA (b) Advanced Systems Analysis Program, International Institute for Applied System Analysis, Laxenburg, Austria
    Keywords: Sustainable Development
    ISSN: 0964-5691
    Source: Cengage Learning, Inc.
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  • 3
    Language: English
    In: Ocean and Coastal Management, 15 May 2019, Vol.174, pp.1-14
    Description: In this paper, we identified seven ecological network analysis (ENA) metrics that, in our opinion, have high potential to provide useful and practical information for environmental decision-makers and stakeholders. Measurement and quantification of the network indicators requires that an ecosystem level assessment is implemented. The ENA metrics convey the status of the ecological system state variables, and mostly, the flows and relations between the various nodes of the network. The seven metrics are: 1) Average Path Length (APL), 2) Finn Cycling Index (FCI), 3) Mean Trophic level (MTL), 4) Detritivory to Herbivory ratio (D:H), 5) Keystoneness, 6) Structural Information (SI), and 7) Flow-based Information indices. The procedure for calculating each metric is detailed along with a short evaluation of their potential assessment of environmental status.
    Keywords: Ecological Network Analysis ; Cycling ; Trophic Length ; Marine and Coastal Environment ; Food Web ; Oceanography
    ISSN: 0964-5691
    E-ISSN: 1873-524X
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