Figure 1: Adaptive Cycle
The model of the adaptive cycle was derived from the comparative study of the dynamics of ecosystems. It is meant to be a tool for thought. It focuses attention upon processes of destruction and reorganization, which are often neglected in favour of growth and conservation. Including these processes provides a more complete view of system dynamics that links together system organization, resilience, and dynamics. An adaptive cycle that alternates between long periods of aggregation and transformation of resources and shorter periods that create opportunities for innovation, is proposed as a fundamental unit for understanding complex systems from cells to ecosystems to societies.
Figure 2: Resilience and non-linearity of complex systems
Regime shifts are large, abrupt, persistent changes in the structure and function of a system. An external shock can trigger a completely different system behaviour, here represented by the ball moving into a new regime. But regime shifts also depend on slow changes in external drivers and internal feedbacks that change the domains of attraction of the regime: from a resilient state represented in the figure by the dotted line to a less resilient state represented by the continuous line. The resilience of a state corresponds to the width of a stability pit. The loss of system resilience changes the thresholds that push the system into a new regime.
Figure 3: Environmental programs in the Bronx
Environmental programs in multiple organizations in the Bronx, New York City serve as learning arenas, and are networked to have larger impact on the Bronx River watershed restoration. They involve youth and other residents in environmental stewardship, monitoring, activism, outdoor recreation, and urban agriculture.
1. Mosholu Preservation Corporation
"Students at Mosholu Preservation Corporation are taking a Citizen Pruner Tree Care course offered by Trees New York."
2. Phipps Community Development Coporation "Educators, volunteers, and youth volunteering at a farmers market organized by Drew Gardens, Phipps CDC to promote healthy eating habits and urban agriculture"
3. Arturo A. Schomburg Satellite Academy High School
"Students from the EcoLeaders program at Satellite Academy High School are doing an art project in their school garden to celebrate urban culture, memory, and environment"
4. The POINT Community Development Corporation
Activists speaking during the Fish Parade in the South Bronx to call for waterfront access, watershed restoration, and environmental justice.
5. The Bronx River Alliance
Bronx River Alliance connecting urban residents to the urban environment through paddling events.
6. Youth Ministries for Peace and Justice
Youth stewarding a green roof on top of a catholic church in the South Bronx.
7. Rocking the Boat
Students and environmental professionals at Rocking the Boat are restoring oyster reefs at the mouth of the Bronx River.
Source: Dr. Alex Kudryavtsev