Teitelbaum, S., Montpetit, A., Bissonnette, J.-F., Chion, C., Chiasson, G., Doyon, F., Dupras, J., Fortin, M.-J., Leclerc, E., Saint Amour, C., Tardif, J. (2019). « Studying resource-dependent communities through a social-ecological lens? Examining complementarity with existing research in Canada ». Society and Natural Resources 32. 1, p. 93-112.
Studying resource-dependent communities through a social-ecological lens? Examining complementarity with existing research in Canada
This article explores the suitability of Ostrom and colleagues’ social-ecological systems framework (SESF) for the study of resource-dependent communities in Canada. Through a broad literature about resource-dependent communities in Canada, three main approaches are identified, named staples research, rural development, and sustainability studies. Each of these research traditions is analyzed with regards to a common set of criteria – focus, scale, methods, treatment of institutions, and treatment of environmental dimensions. Research in each category is compared and contrasted with the SESF approach, to identify areas of overlap and divergence. Results indicate that the SESF is unlikely to provide additional benefit in terms of in-depth of social analysis, however, it does provide a unique contribution in terms of its coupled approach to conceiving social and ecological systems and its ability to operationalize these relationships through structured variables.