Strong nonlinearities in an ever-changing social-ecological system: A data-driven empirical study of the historical development of the Baltic Sea
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Understanding linked social and ecological dynamics is a pre-requisite for sustainable use of natural resources. Integrated quantitative studies of such linked systems have however been scarce due to lack of suitable methods and data. In this paper, we apply state-of-the-art nonlinear time series methods (EDM) to nine decades of spatially explicit fisheries data to investigate their empirical dynamics. We found that fish prices, and to a less extent fish catches, were predictable beyond linear change or temporal correlations, and highly nonlinear. Moreover, we found that the system appeared to be drifting, indicating gradual changes in internal feedback strength and thus limiting predictability over long time periods. Our results indicate that predictability in social-ecological systems may be relatively modest, which may call for an adaptive, risk-averse approach to ecosystem management.
Social-ecological systems, Complex adaptive systems, Baltic Sea, EDM
Research subject Sustainability Science
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-122353OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-122353DiVA: diva2:865728