MS THESIS: Building resilience to climate-driven regime shifts

Type of the Dataset


Brief description of the dataset or resource

There is increasing concern about potential climate-driven regime shifts
– large abrupt shifts in social-ecological systems that could have large impacts on ecosystems services and human well-being. This paper aims to synthesize the potential pathways for building resilience to such regime shifts. Ten examples from the Regime Shift Database provided the cases for analysis. Causal loop diagrams were used to analyze feedback mechanisms at different scales and identify “leverage points” – places to intervene in the system in order to build resilience. Sixteen of these leverage points were identified, most of which relate to agricultural management. Most feedback mechanisms include at least one leverage point highlighting the potential for
building resilience to climate-induced regime shifts. The most common leverage points identified in our analyses were vegetation cover, algae volume and atmospheric temperature. These leverage points were compared to mitigation strategies discussed by the IPCC. This comparison indicates that current climate change mitigation strategies do not alter most of the leverage points directly. This suggests that IPCC
strategies should be broadened in order to reduce the risk of regime shifts, and the associated impacts on human well-being.

Area or region to which the resource applies


Contact person & contact details

Rolands Sadauskis
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Conditions of use & citation details

Sadauskis, R. 2011. Building resilience to climate-driven regime shifts. MSc thesis. Stockholm Resilience Centre, Stockholm University, Sweden.