U.S. Environmental Protection Agency


Date of this Version



Ecology and Society 18(1): 9. http://dx.doi.org/10.5751/ES-05180-180109


Panarchy provides a heuristic to characterize the cross-scale dynamics of social-ecological systems and a framework for how governance institutions should behave to be compatible with the ecosystems they manage. Managing for resilience will likely require reform of law to account for the dynamics of social-ecological systems and achieve a substantive mandate that accommodates the need for adaptation. In this paper, we suggest expansive legal reform by identifying the principles of reflexive law as a possible mechanism for achieving a shift to resilience-based governance and leveraging cross-scale dynamics to provide resilience-based responses to increasingly challenging environmental conditions.