Connectivity and the Governance of Multilevel Social-Ecological Systems: The Role of Social Capital
Eduardo S. Brondizio
Indiana University Bloomington - School of Public & Environmental Affairs (SPEA); Indiana University Bloomington - Department of Political Science
Oran R. Young
University of California, Santa Barbara
Annual Review of Environment and Resources, Vol. 34, pp. 253-278, 2009
We discuss the challenges confronting environmental governance caused by the increasing connectivity of resource-use systems and the growing functional interdependencies of ecological and social systems. We take as a point of departure the case of the Xingu Indigenous Park (PIX) in Brazil and its surrounding agro-industrial region. This case provides a basis for reviewing the literature on resource governance, including both points of consensus and contentious issues. We argue that no fixed spatial or temporal level is appropriate for governing ecosystems and their services sustainably, effectively, and equitably. We point to the need to recognize the multilevel nature of such problems and the role of institutions in facilitating cross-level environmental governance as an important form of social capital that is essential for the long-term protection of ecosystems and the well-being of different populations.
Date posted: June 4, 2010