Sustainable management and transitions in social-ecological systems – Satellite at CCS 2022

The objective of this satellite approved at the international conference on Complex Systems CCS 2022 is to question the concept of transition in SES through the lens of sustainable management, with a specific focus on the feedbacks between the transitions of the social system with the ecological system.

Social-ecological systems (SESs) are subjected to more and more exogenous drivers, leading to non-linear transition pathways caused by unexpected feedbacks within the system. These non-linear feedbacks may potentially cause the collapse of one of the two subsystems (either the social or ecological systems) and therefore the potential collapse of the whole system. For coping with such non-linearity, decision-makers need operational tools for sustainably managing SES, especially when SESs are in transitions because of exogenous changes. Such operational tools may be based on qualitative analyses of SES dynamics as well as quantitative approaches based on simulation or statistic tools. The purpose is to have an overview of the different approaches enabling a better handling of transitions in SES and their management. We mainly focus on two areas:

  • The assessment and the modeling of the transitions in SES as well as the conditions of emergence of such transitions;

  • The sustainable management of SES and their (potential) transitions as well as the analysis of the involved SES pathways.


The satellite will be organized as follows:

  • Morning session (3 sessions): presentations of 20mns (6 expected talks), and general discussion and identification of three key-questions about the transitions in SES and their management;

  • Afternoon session: organization of small workshops (4-5 people) on the key-questions identified during the morning. General discussion and conclusion of the satellite.


This satellite is partially funded by the ANR (Agence Nationale de la Recherche) under the VIRGO project (ANR-16-CE03-0003).