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[SESYNC Seminar] Understanding Economic/Livelihood Diversity in Modern Socio-environmental Systems

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Presenter: 
Dr. Bill Burnside, Postdoctoral Fellow, SESYNC
Time of Event: 
Tuesday, April 16, 2013 - 12:30

SESYNC - 1 Park Place, Suite 300, Annapolis, MD

A defining characteristic of socio-environmental systems, meaning linked systems of human communities and their environmental contexts, is the diversity of their economic or livelihood base. Members of an agrarian community can, for example, grow one strain of corn, multiple strains of corn, or some mix of corn, beans, and peaches. The community could also supplement traditional crop income with income from other activities, such as work in a nearby factory or with cash inputs from community members living elsewhere, such as in major cities. I will review insights and case studies from economics, geography, anthropology, and ecology about economic diversity and discuss a simple conceptual framework for considering how economic reward and risk and social connectedness might affect these diversity patterns in a globalizing world.