Environmental Methodologies: Why Isn't the Use of Adaptive Management More General?

15 Pages Posted: 20 Sep 2016 Last revised: 5 Mar 2017

Date Written: December 30, 2014

Abstract

Although “adaptive management” has been around for some fifty years and despite the fact that there is a substantial body of literature on its applicability to scientific problems, it is necessary to conclude that it has not been adopted widely either as a research or a management technique. The “blueprint” approach still dominates mainstream scientific methodologies despite its demonstrable and documented limitations. The issue is all-pervasive, affecting scientific research, management, conservation (including international treaties) and development. This paper examines the essential differences between a process-based approach and a blueprint approach and gives examples to demonstrate the generality of the epistemological problem. The author concludes that until adaptive management is treated as a formal scientific discipline and given a name reflecting its application to the study of uncertainties and complex systems it is unlikely to be adopted by a larger group of followers.

Keywords: Adaptive Management

JEL Classification: C90

Suggested Citation

Martin, Rowan, Environmental Methodologies: Why Isn't the Use of Adaptive Management More General? (December 30, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2840436 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2840436

Rowan Martin (Contact Author)

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

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