Systemic Integrated Adaptation: Interdisciplinarity, Academia and Practice

Trinity College Scientific Society

Speaker: Ariella Helfgott, Environmental Change Institute, Oxford

Date: Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Time: 5.30 pm

Venue: Danson Room, Trinity College

Refreshments will be provided.


The Systemic Integrated Adaptation (SIA) Research Program draws together diverse forms of knowledge generation and sense-making from across disciplines, sectors and social worlds towards the interrelated goals of climate adaptation, sustainable development, environmental management and food security. The program is fundamentally concerned with small-holder farmers and the integrated social, economic, political and environmental systems in which they are embedded. It aims to co-identify and support appropriate actions at multiple levels within these systems according to the principle of subsidiarity and adopts a critical approach to systems and their boundaries. This talk will introduce the theory of resilience and systems thinking, describe the successes and challenges of the SIA program, and some of the practical issues around designing and implementing interdisciplinary research and practice.

Ariella Helfgott is currently a Senior Research Associate at the Environmental Change Institute. Her field research takes place in East Africa, West Africa, the Indo-gangetic Plain, South-East Asia and Latin America. It spans conceptual and mathematical modeling of system resilience and adaptability, through to participatory approaches to building resilience and adaptive capacity on-the-ground. Her current projects include Himalayan Field Research Program (HFRP) and ROBIN - The Role of Biodiversity in Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation in the Amazon.

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