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Coupled Human and Natural Systems: Natural Resource Management in Tropical Environments

Type: Paper
Sponsor Groups:
Organizers: Leandra Merz, Audrey Smith
Chairs: Leandra Merz


Coupled human and natural systems (CHANS) are integrated systems in which people interact with natural components. Despite numerous studies examining human-nature interactions, the complexity of coupled systems has not been well understood. Traditionally, the separation between the social and ecological sciences has led to slow progress in CHANS research. However, more recently an increasing number of interdisciplinary programs have been integrating ecological and social sciences to study coupled human and natural systems (e.g., social-ecological systems and human-environment systems).

The goal of this proposed session is to focus on the role of natural resource management in social-ecological systems in tropical environments. We expect that papers in this session will contribute towards an improved descriptive, analytical, and explanatory understanding of the complex CHANS in the tropics. Papers should address social and ecological impacts of natural resource use and management (e.g. reciprocal relationships, cross-scale interactions, and feedbacks). Potential topics of interest include human-wildlife interactions; agricultural development and food production systems; conservation strategies and programs; environmental governance; land-use change; and ecosystem services. If you are interested in participating in this session please email Leandra Merz at with your abstract and participant ID number.


Type Details Minutes Start Time
Presenter Leandra Merz*, University of Florida, Human-Wildlife Coexistence outside North Luangwa National Park, Zambia 15 12:00 AM
Presenter Audrey Culver Smith*, University of Florida, Reza Khatami, University of Florida, Carly Muir, University of Florida, Jane Southworth, University of Florida, Dan Brown, School of Environment and Forest Sciences, College of Environment, University of Washingtondan, Large-scale land acquisitions and ecosystem services: Impacts on natural woodlands and energy security in Ethiopia 15 12:00 AM
Presenter Bernadette Arakwiye*, Clark University, Drivers of forest transitions and impacts on smallholder farmers in Western Rwanda 15 12:00 AM
Presenter Reza Khatami*, University of Florida, Jane Southworth, University of Florida, Carly Muir, University of Florida, Quantification of recent land cover changes in Ethiopia 15 12:00 AM

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