Contributed session - Multi-level governance and biosphere stewardship
C3 (180)
11:00 - 12:30
Christo Fabricius
From vulnerability transfer to maladaptation: exploring processes at stake through observation, experimentation and simulation
Olivier Barreteau 1, J. Marty Anderies 2, Bruno Bonte 1, Chloe Guerbois 4, Raphaël Mathevet 3, Clara Therville 5
1 IRSTEA UMR G-EAU, Montpellier, France
2 Arizona State University, Tempe, United States
3 CNRS UMR CEFE, Montpellier, France
4 Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, George, South Africa
5 Cirad GREEN, Montpellier, France
Adaption patterns undertaken by policy makers within their own jurisdiction may bump into adaptation patterns undertaken by others at their own level. The consequences of these interactions may lead to mutual reinforcement or a neutralization of each policy maker’s adaptation capacity. Since adaptation plans are proliferating we seek to better understand the processes behind these transfers of vulnerability that might incidentally lead to maladaptation.
In this presentation, we adapt Anderies (2014) framework by considering social ecological system (SES) adaptive management as autonomous feedback loop. We identify the interactions between these loops to characterize transfers of vulnerability or robustness as a mechanistic process, without the need to assume any intention of transfer. We use this representation in its capacity to encompass narratives observed in coastal case studies in France, South Africa and England. This enables the interpretation of observations and identification of possible connections between adaptive management autonomous processes, and the proposition of a typology of sources of transfers.
We complete our analysis of observations through simulations in an artificial society, SugarScale, and experimentations with serious games. Sugar Scale features transfers of vulnerability between “countries” that use two complementary resources with contrasted exposure to hazards. The possibility to trade resources and migrate from one “country” to another generates virtual examples of vulnerability transfers among populations.
Ultimately policy makers seek ways to increase the overall efficiency of adaptation plans but lack understanding of these complex relations. Our serious games raised the awareness of these possible transfers, made them visible and enabled discussion of (1) the plurality of adaptation patterns (and related goals), and (2) the mechanisms behind them that could be corrected. The outcomes of these preliminary experiments demonstrated the considerable potential of these settings to raise awareness and trigger discussion about vulnerability transfers.

Olivier Barreteau
Presentation type:
Contributed session oral presentation
C3 (180)
Christo Fabricius
Wednesday, 23 August
11:00 - 12:30
Session times:
11:00 - 12:30