Evolution and Ecology (EEP) Program: Scientific Achievements in 2012

Through the development of new methods and the pioneering of their applications, the Evolution and Ecology Program (EEP) analyzes and forecasts how ecological and evolutionary dynamics shape populations, communities, and ecosystems.

Modern approaches to describing complex adaptive systems need to account for nonlinear feed-backs, non-equilibrium dynamics, discontinuities and break points, collective phenomena, systemic transitions, behavioral dynamics, as well as multi-level and multi-scale interactions among processes and agents.

EEP is building bridges between fundamental and policy-oriented, theoretical and empirical, biological and mathematical, and analytical and numerical approaches to the systems analysis of the living world, as follows:

• Work on the equitable governance of common goods investigates how top-down regulations for managing common goods or open-access resources can be improved by integrative assessments of stakeholder conflicts and by scaling up successful characteristics of self-organized and resilient bottom-up governance (Poverty and Equity).

• Studies on the eco-evolutionary dynamics of living systems, on Systemic risk and network dynamics, and on Evolutionary vegetation modeling and management open up new methodological avenues for the applied systems analysis of biodiversity, tangled interactions, and ecosystem dynamics (Advanced Systems Analysis).

• The last project’s process-based modeling approach will enable novel features in next-generation dynamic global vegetation models, which are instrumental for assessing climate impacts (Energy and Climate Change). 

To access EEP research, click on any of the links below or in the right-hand box Evolution and Ecology 2012.

Evolutionarily sustainable consumption

EEP’s research on exploitation-induced evolution is overcoming a blind spot in the management of living natural resources: over time, exploitation not only changes the abundance, but also the heritable traits of the targeted species.  More

Integrated assessment of fisheries systems

Fisheries continue to play an important role for food security worldwide. Many resource populations, however, are not harvested sustainably. In addition to sub-optimal performance in terms of traditional criteria related to stock abundance and economic profits, research in EEP has shown that fishing might induce undesirable evolutionary changes.  More

Equitable governance of common goods

EEP’s research on the evolution of cooperation is following the lines defined in IIASA’s 2011-2015 research plan, by analyzing the evolution of cooperation in joint enterprises and resource management, with particular emphasis on the nature and impact of incentives. More

Eco-evolutionary dynamics of living systems: Applications

The concept of the ecological niche – the way a species makes its living – is a cornerstone of studying the eco-evolutionary dynamics of living systems.  More

Eco-evolutionary dynamics of living systems: Theory

EEP  develops innovative principles for analyzing ecological and eco-evolutionary models at various levels of complexity. More

Systemic risk and network dynamics

EEP is pursuing analyses of systemic risk and of the underlying network dynamics in close collaboration with IIASA’s ASA Program, to identify indicators of systemic risk and resilience across different network-structured natural and anthropogenic systems. More

Evolutionary vegetation modeling and management

EEP’s research on evolutionary vegetation modeling and management aims to improve models of the formation and maintenance of vegetation diversity, structure, and functioning.  More

Policy Impact in 2012

EEP’s long-lasting investments into elucidating the evolutionary implications of fishing are attracting increasing attention among scientists charged with providing advice to fisheries managers.  More


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Last edited: 31 October 2013

Evolution and Ecology Program 2012

Evolutionarily sustainable consumption

Integrated assessment of fisheries systems

Equitable governance of common goods

Eco-evolutionary dynamics of living systems: Applications

Eco-evolutionary dynamics of living systems: Theory

Systemic risk and network dynamics

Evolutionary vegetation modeling and management

Policy Impact in 2012

International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
Schlossplatz 1, A-2361 Laxenburg, Austria
Phone: (+43 2236) 807 0 Fax:(+43 2236) 71 313