Social-Ecological Resilience and Sustainability, Chapter 1

65 Pages Posted: 30 May 2018 Last revised: 16 Jan 2019

See all articles by Shelley Ross Saxer

Shelley Ross Saxer

Pepperdine University School of Law

Jonathan D. Rosenbloom

Drake University Law School

Date Written: 2018


Resilience and sustainability provide analytical frameworks to help understand and address new, changing, and complex economic, environmental, and social systems. These frameworks provide new and innovative ways to explain complex systems and in turn rethink traditional notions of law and policy. This book will help students learn about and utilize resilience and sustainability theories and principles by introducing resilience and sustainability as analytical frameworks and illustrating how these concepts apply in various contexts including: water, food, shelter/land use, energy, natural resources, pollution, disaster law, and climate change. While the authors do not intend this book to teach all of the law and policy of the various contexts, the book is sufficiently comprehensive to serve as a survey course for those schools who do not have the teaching resources, or the student demand, to offer separate courses for each area of the law and policy we address. Chapter 1 introduces and defines the terms “resilience” and “sustainability.” This chapter explores the interdisciplinary nature of R&S and the meanings of, complexities embedded in, and the overlap and differences between R&S.

Keywords: resilience, sustainability, sustainable, environmental studies, environmental science, environmental policy, planning, analytical framework, land use, energy, natural resource, pollution, disaster law, climate change, ecology

Suggested Citation

Saxer, Shelley Ross and Rosenbloom, Jonathan D., Social-Ecological Resilience and Sustainability, Chapter 1 (2018). Pepperdine University Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2018/8. Available at SSRN:

Shelley Ross Saxer (Contact Author)

Pepperdine University School of Law ( email )

24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90263
United States

Jonathan D. Rosenbloom

Drake University Law School ( email )

27th & Carpenter Sts.
Des Moines, IA 50311
United States

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