Course

Resilience of living systems – from fundamental concepts to interdisciplinary applications

Organised by Graduate schools WIAS and PE&RC
Date

Sun 29 April 2018 until Fri 4 May 2018

Venue Conference Centre De Werelt in Lunteren, The Netherlands

During the course, the participants will learn about the basic concepts of resilience and their application, from an interdisciplinary perspective. Accordingly, we will address how resilience theory can be used to tackle fundamental and societal issues from a socio-economic and bio-physical perspective and will provide a critical reflection on the relevance, use, and applicability of the concept of resilience.

Scope

We will focus particularly on:

  1. The identification of resilience related problems and the variance in interpretation between systems under investigation that vary in spatio- and temporal scales of operation and level of complexity
  2. The measurement and prediction and
  3. Management and governance of the systems’ resilience.

Key elements

  • Concepts (positive feedback mechanisms, tipping points, alternate stable states)
  • Measures of resilience
  • Predicting resilience
  • Managing resilience
  • Spatial and temporal scaling / level of integration
  • Complexity vs stability
  • System thinking
  • System vs organism resilience

Learning goals

Participants understand:

  • The basic concepts regarding resilience
  • How it can be used to address societal issues from a socio-economic / bio-physical perspective
  • Being able to apply the concepts
  • Critical reflection of the relevance, use and applicability of resilience

Set-up

The proposed course targets postgraduates from various disciplines. Hence, the first step of the course is to get everyone up to speed on the basic concepts of resilience, simultaneously ensuring that all participants are using the same terminology (Sunday key note address)

To establish an active participation and the opportunity to learn about each other’s visions on resilience, the course will start with a poster carousel on the first introduction day/evening where participants introduce themselves in a set of parallel session based on a predetermined format (who am I, what do I do (description of research), What is my interest in resilience, how can I contribute, what do I want to get out of the course)

Monday – Thursday: Each morning 2 plenary lectures that are dedicated to the basic concepts of resilience and how to apply them. These basic concepts will be introduced using a range of examples from different disciplines (e.g. socio-economic, medical, biophysical, ecological, etc. at different scales of integration (space, time, complexity).

After each lecture participants (in groups of 2–3) will have to convene post-lecture discussions, which they will prepare using literature provided by the speaker.

Monday – Thursday: Afternoon group work in which participants will work on resilience challenges. Product of the group work will be a brief project proposal. To this end, they will work on assignments in multidisciplinary teams where they must take the following into account:

  • Spatial scales
  • Temporal scales
  • Complexity
  • Feedback mechanisms
  • Complexity vs stability

The following potential topics have been identified:

  • The natural system (terrestrial)
  • The farming system
  • The organism system (animal and human body)
  • The climate system
  • Aquatic ecosystem

List of confirmed speakers

(in alphabetical order):

dr Lydia Afman

Associate professor at Wageningen University and Research – AFSG - Human Nutrition

prof dr ir Niels Anten

Professor at Wageningen University and Research – PSG - Centre for Crop Systems Analysis

dr Michael Bahn

Associate professor at University of Innsbruck UIBK - Institute of Ecology

dr Lan Ge

Senior scientist at Wageningen University and Research - Wageningen Economic Research - Innovation, Risk and Information Management

prof dr Ken Giller

Professor at Wageningen University and Research - PSG - Plant Production Systems

prof dr Jef Huisman

Professor at University of Amsterdam - Faculty of Science - Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics

prof dr ir Mart de Jong

Professor at Wageningen University and Research – ASG - Quantitative Veterinary Epidemiology

prof dr Michiel Kleerebezem

Personal professor at Wageningen University and Research – ASG - Host-Microbe Interactomics

prof dr Rik Leemans

Professor at Wageningen University and Research – ESG - Environmental Systems Analysis

prof dr Wolf Mooij

Full professor at Wageningen University and Research – ESG - Aquatic Ecology and Water Quality Management

prof dr Egbert Otten

Professor at University of Groningen – Faculty of Medical Sciences - NeuroMechanics and Prosthetics

dr Jan Jaap Poos

Assistant professor at Wageningen University and Research – ASG - Aquaculture and Fisheries

prof dr Marten Scheffer

Professor at Wageningen University and Research – ESG - Aquatic Ecology and Water Quality Management

prof dr Peter Wadhams

Professor of Ocean Physics, Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, University of Cambridge