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Exploring Energy Cultures in Rural Romania

From refrigerators to electric toothbrushes, our daily lives are simplified, supported and shaped by energy usage. While the majority of the world’s population has access to energy, norms and energy practices vary significantly. Klaniecki et al. (2020) apply the Energy Cultures Framework to explore the social and material energy culture of a rural region inContinue reading “Exploring Energy Cultures in Rural Romania”

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Human-Nature Connectedness in Simplified Landscapes: Exploring Relational Values

From soy monocultures in the Amazon to palm oil plantations in Southeast Asia and agricultural intensification in Europe: landscape simplification is taking place all over the world. In a recently published paper, Riechers et al. (2020) argue that in addition to ecological degradation, the simplification of landscapes can also have detrimental effects on human-nature relationships.Continue reading “Human-Nature Connectedness in Simplified Landscapes: Exploring Relational Values”

Staying Grounded: Using Vegetation Indices to Inform Carabid Beetle Conservation

Large parts of China are covered by steppes: more than 40% of the country’s terrestrial surface exhibit different types of grassland. In these ecosystems, carabids constitute one of the most abundant beetles. These carabid or ground beetle communities do not only depend on the biotic and abiotic characteristics of their local habitat but are alsoContinue reading “Staying Grounded: Using Vegetation Indices to Inform Carabid Beetle Conservation”

Harmonising Biodiversity Conservation and Food Security: Five Years of Research in Southwestern Ethiopia

The southwest of Ethiopia is home to a rich variety of animal and plant species – many of them endemic or threatened. These species, in combination with intense human pressure on land, make the region a globally recognized biodiversity hotspot and thus highly relevant for conservation. At the same time, millions of people in theContinue reading “Harmonising Biodiversity Conservation and Food Security: Five Years of Research in Southwestern Ethiopia”

From Cocoa to Pandas: Assessing Interregional Ecosystem Service Flows

Nature is fundamental to human well-being as it provides countless services to people. This flow of benefits from ecosystems to humans is called ecosystem services (ES). From the provisioning of freshwater to pest control by migratory species, the flow of ES between regions connects social-ecological systems across space through a process called telecoupling. But whileContinue reading “From Cocoa to Pandas: Assessing Interregional Ecosystem Service Flows”

A Reconciliation of Success in Times of a Global Crisis

By Jacqueline Loos Currently, many people are worrying about their lives and the lives of their beloved ones. Some people, especially the most vulnerable among us, may be losing the little income they have during this time of shutdown, or work under circumstances that won´t allow them the luxury of physical distancing, not enjoying anyContinue reading “A Reconciliation of Success in Times of a Global Crisis”

Growing Hope – Supporting Biodiversity and Enhancing Human Well-Being

A myriad of factors drive habitat loss from the local to the global level: global warming, land-use change, pollution, agricultural intensification and land abandonment all contribute to the current decline in biodiversity. Although not as visible as large mammals, insects are also subjected to a loss in their species richness. This in turn directly andContinue reading “Growing Hope – Supporting Biodiversity and Enhancing Human Well-Being”

Human Disturbances and Land-Cover Types: Understanding Woody Plant Species Diversity in Ethiopia

In the 21st century, there are no places left on earth which are truly untouched by humans. This also holds true for the Wanchi watershed in the Ethiopian highlands. There, a mix of human land-use change and environmental variables shape local ecosystems. To find out how the diversity of woody plant species in the areaContinue reading “Human Disturbances and Land-Cover Types: Understanding Woody Plant Species Diversity in Ethiopia”

Not So Different After All? Linking Sustainability Science and Social-Ecological Systems Research to Foster Transformation

The sustainability challenges we face in the Anthropocene are diverse and complex. Different disciplines, all aiming at creating socially relevant sustainability outcomes, have developed distinct approaches to knowledge creation over time. Typically, these disciplines collaborate to generate solutions to sustainability problems. Horcea-Milcu et al. (2020) take a closer look at sustainability science and social-ecological systemsContinue reading “Not So Different After All? Linking Sustainability Science and Social-Ecological Systems Research to Foster Transformation”

Return to Sender: Bringing Back the Science to Stakeholders and Communities

By Jannik Schultner Taking back the results of our social-ecological research to stakeholders and communities is key to making our science relevant in the real-world. To make an effort beyond putting a policy-relevance section at the end of our publications may seem tedious, but can have massive impact at the level where our science isContinue reading “Return to Sender: Bringing Back the Science to Stakeholders and Communities”