EPA Science Inventory

Managing for resilience: early detection of regime shifts in complex systems

Citation:

EASON, T., A. GARMESTANI, AND H. CABEZAS. Managing for resilience: early detection of regime shifts in complex systems. CLEAN TECHNOLOGIES AND ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY. Springer Berlin-Heidelberg, , Germany, 16(4):773-783, (2014).

Description:

The goal of sustainability is to maintain a condition or regime of the Earth, which supports human existence from generation to generation. Hence, the ability to detect, characterize, and manage regime shifts, particularly catastrophic ones, is critical to maintaining human sustainability. Therefore, there is a need for methods that are not only able to detect regime shifts but more importantly, identify them before they occur. Rising variance, skewness, kurtosis and critical slowing down have all been proposed as indicators of impending regime shifts. However, these approaches typically do not signal a shift until it is well underway. Further, they have primarily been used to evaluate simple systems; hence, additional work is needed to adapt these methods, if possible, to real systems which typically are complex and multivariate. Fisher information is a key method in information theory and affords the ability to characterize the dynamic behavior of systems. In this work, Fisher information is compared to traditional indicators through the assessment of model and real systems and identified as a leading indicator of impending regime shifts. Evidenced by the great deal of activity in the research area, it is understood that such work could lead to better methods for detecting and managing systems that are of significant importance to humans. Thus, we believe the results of this work offer great promise for resilience science and sustainability.

Purpose/Objective:

To inform the public

URLs/Downloads:

http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10098-013-0687-2   Exit

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (JOURNAL/PEER REVIEWED JOURNAL)
Projected Completion Date: 04/01/2014
Record Last Revised: 08/27/2014
Record Created: 04/07/2011
Record Released: 04/07/2011
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 234616

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL RISK MANAGEMENT RESEARCH LABORATORY

SUSTAINABLE TECHNOLOGY DIVISION

SYSTEMS ANALYSIS BRANCH