Towards a conceptual framework and integrated database on Social-Ecological Systems

Understanding how mankind makes use of natural resources, whether this use is sustainable, and how sustainability may be achieved, considering various spatial and temporal scales, remains a major challenge. Much of social science work has limited effect on natural science perspectives and vice versa. The accumulation of scientific knowledge of complex social-ecological and complex socio-technical systems is hindered not by the diversity of theories, models, and methods, but by the lack of a shared conceptual framework that provides the basis for systematic comparison of these theories, models, and methods.


The mission of the "SES Club" is

  1. To work with scholars in multiple locations in the development of a common framework for the analysis of social-ecological systems (SESs) and social-technical systems (STSs). The development will take into account different disciplinary research traditions and is meant to promote cross-sectoral and cross-national research.
  2. To illustrate the multiple purposes this framework can be used in research. Intended purposes include case studies, the development of large-N databases, diagnosis, sustainability assessment, and the comparative analysis of theories, models and frameworks.
  3. To establish a process that leads to the accumulation of knowledge on SETs.


Via this web site we can

  • maintain a list of interested people (as first-tier, second-tier and third-tier members),
  • share (links to) relevant information (meeting minutes, web sites, articles, calls for papers, etc.), and
  • maintain a calendar of events (conferences, workshops, meetings) relevant for this project.