Workshop 3: Sustainable Management of Living Natural Resources

(November 4,2013 - November 8,2013 )

Organizers


Paul Armsworth
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Tennessee
Alan Hastings
Department of Environmental Science and Policy, University of California, Davis
Andrew Liebhold
US Forest ServiceNorthern Research Station, Northern Research Station

Natural resources, such as forests, fish, land, and biodiversity, while renewable, are being pushed to the brink and beyond by sectorial mismanagement and the resulting cumulative impacts on the macroscopic environmental and ecosystem conditions. For many, the solution is to take a more holistic or ecosystem-based approach to management (EBM). While this approach seems intuitive, there are many unanswered questions as to the information and modeling requirements for implementing EBM and the potential impacts both at a micro and macroscopic level that it would have on the sustainability of natural resources and the communities that rely on them. It is clear that EBM requires a synthesis of our understanding of ecology and economics, which are both complex systems in their own right. Each has its own highly developed mathematical models and modeling approaches. Methods from optimal control have been applied in the context of fisheries and forestry, as exemplified by the classic text by Colin Clark, Mathematical Bioeconomics. These approaches have proved extremely useful, but for the most part have focused on single species questions. Extending these ideas to questions that are larger in scope in terms of more species and including spatial heterogeneity is a real mathematical challenge. Optimal control theory provides one potential framework for evaluating EBM, but the complexities of spatially distributed, age structured, and/or stochastic population models will push the frontier of analytical and numerical analysis. Answering the many questions surrounding the implementation and effects of EBM also requires developing mathematical tools and methods for understanding complex coupled natural-human systems, that is, the interaction between ecosystem dynamics and human community dynamics. Mathematical models for EBM need to take into account both the dynamics of coupled ecological and economic systems and the game theoretic issues arising from the differing interests and values of different stakeholders. Some mathematical approaches to those issues have been developed in both ecology and economics. On the ecological side there are ideas such as the theory of adaptive dynamics. On the economic side there is the theory of differential games, where the single control parameter that can be used for optimization in traditional control theory is replaced by a collection of controls, and where different controls are in the hands of different stakeholders who may want to optimize different things. What is needed for scientific progress is a high level synthesis of these and other ideas, which can occur only if experts on modeling in both ecology and economics collaborate with each other and with experts in mathematical sub-disciplines that are likely to be relevant, including game theory, control theory, dynamical systems, and stochastic processes. An important goal of the mathematical modeling is to analyze the likely consequences of policy choices proposed by Congress, government agencies, or eco-system managers. These choices will have important consequences not only for ecological systems, but also for the health and economic well being of human communities. Therefore, this workshop will have a public policy component, and representatives of policy makers and fellows of public policy institutes will be invited. At least two afternoons will be devoted to case studies which will develop new research directions, rather than lectures.

Accepted Speakers

Paul Armsworth
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Tennessee
Carl Boettiger
Applied Mathematics and Statistics, University of California, Santa Cruz
Michael Bonsall
Zoology, University of Oxford
Iadine Chadès
Ecosystem Sciences, CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences
Rebecca Epanchin-Niell
Resources for the Future, Non-profit research institution
Bill Fagan
National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, SESYNC
Alan Hastings
Department of Environmental Science and Policy, University of California, Davis
Jacob LaRiviere
Economics, University of Washington
Brian Leung
Biology, McGill University
Hugh Possingham
Centre for Biodiversity & Conservation Science, Centre for Biodiversity & Conservation Science
Katriona Shea
Department of Biology, Pennsylvania State University
Monday, November 4, 2013
Time Session
08:00 AM

Shuttle to MBI

08:15 AM
08:45 AM

Breakfast

08:45 AM
09:00 AM

Greetings and info from MBI

09:00 AM
09:45 AM

Hastings, Liebhold and Armsworth

09:45 AM
10:30 AM
Alan Hastings - Challenges in the management of natural systems

I will give an overview of mathematical challenges that arise in developing management strategies for natural systems. The emphasis will be on issues that arise from the nature of the biological systems, including, but not limited to, limited data, nonlinearities, stochasticity, constraints that arise from biological issues, and time scales. I will illustrate the concepts by starting with some of the best studied examples, which come from fisheries, then discuss issues of invasive species, and finally move on to lesser studied and more poorly specified areas. The goal of the talk will be to set the stage for the workshop and initial discussions.

10:30 AM
11:00 AM

Break

11:00 AM
11:45 AM
Lou Gross - Regional Natural Resource Management: Comments on Optimization, Control, Feasibility and Future Directions

I will discuss a few major national and international initiatives that impinge on sustainability of resource management. Based on experiences with one of the larger projects on natural system restoration in the Everglades of South Florida, I will provide some insight and lessons learned in linking models to planning and policy. These will in part emphasize the difficulty in obtaining concensus on control objectives and the benefits of taking a rather less optimization- focused perspective but one considering robustness of relative rankings of alternatives. Finally I will point out some challenges in the topic areas of the workshop that may benefit from mathematical approaches.

11:45 AM
12:15 PM

Agree break-out topics

12:15 PM
02:15 PM

Lunch Break

02:15 PM
03:30 PM

Break-outs, Leaders: Cuddington, Wilen & Cantrell

03:30 PM
04:00 PM

Report back

04:30 PM
06:00 PM

Reception and poster session in MBI Lounge

06:00 PM
06:15 PM

General

06:15 PM

Shuttle pick-up from MBI

Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Time Session
08:00 AM

Shuttle to MBI

08:15 AM
09:00 AM

Breakfast

09:00 AM
09:45 AM
Paul Armsworth - "Buying" conservation benefits from private landowners

Conservation organizations often rely on incentive payments to private landowners to "buy" conservation benefits. In evaluating the efficiency of such programs, conservation biologists have often assumed contracts can be acquired at landowners' willingness-to-accept. Were this possible it would represent something of a best possible outcome for conservation from a negotiation with private landowners. Drawing on game theory, optimization methods and agent-based simulations, I will examine how conservation outcomes would be affected if landowners instead were to hold out for payments over and above their willingness-to-accept to gain some surplus from the transaction.

09:45 AM
10:30 AM
Hugh Possingham - The maths of biodiversity actions

My talk will be flexible and depend in the events of the first day. I can cover the application of Marxan and Marxan with zones to conservation planning with a focus on ecosystem services. The disadvantages of using Marxan and other spatial planning tools will be explained. I can also explain how we have calculated biodiversity benefits for offsetting.

10:30 AM
11:00 AM

Break

11:00 AM
11:45 AM
Bill Fagan - Linking Individual Movements and Population Patterns in Dynamic Landscapes

Real landscapes are dynamic in space and time, and the scales over which such variation occurs can determine the success of different conservation strategies for resident species. Within such landscapes, real species rely on a variety of individual-level behaviors for movement and navigation. Movement behaviors such as long-distance searching and fine-scale foraging are often intermixed but operate on vastly different spatial and temporal scales. Individual experience, life-history traits, and resource dynamics combine to shape population-level patterns such as range residency, migration, and nomadism.


I will discuss how a combination of empirical movement data and powerful statistical approaches ("animal models" of pedigree effects; semi-variance functions) can be used to inform our understanding of animal movement and help guide conservation planning. Animal models can be used to control for genetic variation among individuals while exploring alternative hypotheses about other factors that influence animal movement. Semi-variance approaches can be used to identify multiple movement modes and solve the sampling rate problem for tracking data, allowing for the identification of critical scales for movement. Together these approaches can help reveal the relationships among individual movements, landscape dynamics, and population level patterns.

11:45 AM
12:15 PM

Agree break-out topics

12:15 PM
02:15 PM

Pizza lunch provided by MBI

02:15 PM
03:30 PM

Break-outs, Leaders: Haight, Potts, Regan

03:30 PM
04:00 PM

Report back

04:15 PM

Shuttle pick-up from MBI

Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Time Session
08:00 AM

Shuttle to MBI

08:15 AM
09:00 AM

Breakfast

09:00 AM
09:45 AM
Rebecca Epanchin-Niell - Integrating Ecologu and Economics to Manage Bioinvasions: where, when, who, and how much?

Biological invasions are spatial-dynamic processes €” they unfold over space and time, driven by a combination of reproduction and dispersal. Consequently, their management requires weighing not only how much and when to invest in control to reduce their damages, but where controls should be applied. Furthermore, invasions unfold in landscapes comprising numerous, independently managed properties such that their spread depends on the control choices of many landowners. Here I present three bioeconomic studies that address these complexities of bioinvasion management. They examine 1) optimal surveillance design for early detection of invasions, 2) optimal spatial control strategies, and 3) individual and cooperative invasion management.

09:45 AM
10:30 AM
Katriona Shea - Disturbance, diversity and invasion ecology

Disturbances are ubiquitous in nature, and are believed to be strong drivers of both ecological diversity and species invasion. The need to address the impacts of environmental disturbance is increasingly urgent in the face of anthropogenic alterations to existing disturbance regimes. I will discuss how an ecological niche-based theory of disturbance, encompassing five interacting aspects (frequency, intensity, duration, extent and timing), can be used to study a wide range of issues related to disturbance regimes and their effects on biological systems. This conceptual framework allows an integrated study of disturbance across levels of biological organization: from the individual through to the population, the community and entire ecosystems. Ongoing theoretical and empirical research not only informs us about when disturbances are likely to pose a problem, but also lets us assess how we can manipulate disturbances to achieve desired management outcomes. As disturbances of many types are increasingly used to manage ecosystems, this approach therefore can be applied to a wide range of management issues. Managers and policy makers need to be able to make reliable predictions €” only if we can anticipate them, can we avoid or ameliorate the impacts of such disturbances.

10:30 AM
11:00 AM

Break

11:00 AM
11:45 AM
Brian Leung - Data, uncertainty and risk in biological invasions

Risk analysis are increasingly recognized as important for prioritizing effort in biological invasions. I will review the state of the science on alien species risk assessment, identify where research has been focused, and identify gaps in the literature, which if filled may improve the science and application of risk analyses. I will walk through individual studies estimating components of risk, given data available. Finally, I will present the outcome of a pathway level bioeconomic risk analysis of an existing policy for invasive species.

11:45 AM
12:30 PM
Michael Bonsall - Vector Dynamics and Disease Control

In this talk I will focus on the role of vector dynamics and its ecological and economic implications for disease control. Genetic methods of controlling insects and agricultural pests have advanced in recent years but their economic benefits remain largely unexplored. By integrating epidemiological and economic approaches we can build sensible mathematical models for exploring the implications of vector control on levels of disease burden. In this talk I will illustrate the ways that we have approached this for understanding Dengue dynamics and some of the subtle ways that understanding human movement and flows are important for implementing disease invention strategies.

12:30 PM
02:15 PM

Lunch Break

02:15 PM
03:30 PM

Break-outs, Leaders: Eisenberg, Liebhold, Cosner

03:30 PM
04:00 PM

Report back

04:15 PM

Shuttle pick-up from MBI

Thursday, November 7, 2013
Time Session
08:00 AM

Shuttle to MBI

08:15 AM
09:00 AM

Breakfast

09:00 AM
09:45 AM
Iadine Chadès - Optimal adaptive management over time and space

Using stochastic dynamic programming techniques, we can optimize our decisions over time and space to maximize our chance of achieving our conservation goal at a minimum cost. In doing so, we assume that although uncertain, the future dynamics of the system can be represented using transition probabilities. When several future dynamics of the system are possible (model uncertainty), finding the best decision over time becomes an adaptive management problem. Unfortunately adaptive management problems suffer from a lack of solution methods. I will demonstrate how partially observable Markov decision processes (POMDP) can help solving large adaptive management problems over time and space.

09:45 AM
10:30 AM
Jacob LaRiviere - Comparing Uncertainties: How to tell what is Most Important

Management of stochastic renewable natural resources occurs in the presence of various forms of uncertainty (e.g., parametric, model, and state).While the implications of different types of uncertainty for management have been carefully analyzed individually, it is not clear when each different type of uncertainty is relatively more or less important for the resource manager.In this talk, I will attempt to define three different forms of uncertainty.I will then discuss some of the challenges of comparing the value of learning about these different uncertainties within the same resource management problem. I will then describe and simulate one candidate method for comparing two different types of uncertainty.

10:30 AM
11:00 AM

Break

11:00 AM
11:45 AM
Carl Boettiger - Avoiding tipping points in the management of ecological systems: a non-parametric Bayesian approach to structural uncertainty

Model uncertainty and limited data coverage are fundamental challenges to robust ecosystem management. These challenges are acutely highlighted by concerns that many ecological systems may contain tipping points. Before a collapse, we do not know where the tipping points lie, if the exist at all. Hence, we know neither a complete model of the system dynamics nor do we have access to data in some large region of state-space where such a tipping point might exist. These two sources of uncertainty frustrate state-of-the-art parametric approaches to decision theory and optimal control. I will illustrate how a non-parametric approach using a Gaussian Process prior provides a more flexible representation of this inherent uncertainty. Consequently, we can adapt the Gaussian Process prior to a stochastic dynamic programming framework in order to make robust management predictions under both model and uncertainty and limited data.

11:45 AM
12:15 PM

Agree break-out topics

12:15 PM
02:15 PM

Lunch Break

02:15 PM
03:30 PM

Break-outs, Leaders:Springborn, Kellner & Zeeman

03:30 PM
04:00 PM

Report back

04:15 PM

Shuttle pick-up from MBI

06:30 PM
07:00 PM

Cash Bar

07:00 PM
09:00 PM

Banquet in the Fusion Room at Crowne Plaza Hotel

Friday, November 8, 2013
Time Session
08:00 AM

Shuttle to MBI

08:15 AM
09:00 AM

Breakfast

09:00 AM
10:30 AM

Synthesis + discussion (Mary Lou Zeeman, Chris Cosner, Richard Rebarber, Lee Altenberg, Sandy Liebhold and Carrie Manore)

10:30 AM
11:00 AM

Break

11:00 AM
12:00 PM

Hastings, Liebhold & Armsworth - Next steps + general discussion

12:00 PM

Shuttle pick-up from MBI (one to Hotel/ one to Airport)

Name Email Affiliation
Altenberg, Lee altenber@santafe.edu Editorial Board, BioSystems, Elsevier Journal
Armsworth, Paul p.armsworth@utk.edu Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Tennessee
Bakshi, Bhavik bakshi.2@osu.edu Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, The Ohio State University
Boettiger, Carl cboettig@gmail.com Applied Mathematics and Statistics, University of California, Santa Cruz
Bonsall, Michael michael.bonsall@zoo.ox.ac.uk Zoology, University of Oxford
Byrne, Erin byrne@math.hmc.edu Mathematics, Olin College of Engineering
Cantrell, Steve rsc@math.miami.edu Mathematics, University of Miami
Chades, Iadine iadine.chades@csiro.au Ecosystem Sciences, CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences
Christian, Aaron christiankobina@yahoo.com Regional Institute for Population Studies, Regional Institute for Population Studies, University of Ghana, Legon. Accra
Collins, Charles collins@utk.edu Mathematics, University of Tennessee
Cosner, Chris gcc@math.miami.edu Mathematics, University of Miami
Cuddington, Kim kcuddington@uwaterloo.ca Biology, University of Waterloo
De Leo, Giulio deleo@stanford.edu dept. of biology and woodsa institute for the environment, Stanford University
Eisenberg, Marisa marisae@umich.edu Department of Epidemiology, University of Michigan
Epanchin-Niell, Rebecca epanchin-niell@rff.org Resources for the Future, Non-profit research institution
Fagan, Bill bfagan@umd.edu National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, SESYNC
Federico, Paula pfederic@capital.edu Mathematics, Computer Science and Physics, Capital University
Geddes, John john.geddes@olin.edu Mathematics, Olin College of Engineering
Gopalakrishnan, Varsha gopalakrishnan.29@osu.edu Chemical and BIomolecular Engineering, The Ohio State University
Gopalakrishnan, Sathya gopalakrishnan.27@osu.edu Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics, The Ohio State University
Gross, Louis gross@tiem.utk.edu Depts. of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology & Math, University of Tennessee
Haight, Robert rhaight@fs.fed.us Northern Research Station, USDA Forest Service Northern Research Station
Hastings, Alan amhastings@ucdavis.edu Department of Environmental Science and Policy, University of California, Davis
Hurtado, Paul hurtado.10@mbi.osu.edu Mathematical Biosciences Institute & Aquatic Ecology Laboratory, The Ohio State University
Johnson, Leah lrjohnson@uchicago.edu Department of Ecology and Evolution, University of Chicago
Kellner, Julie jkellner@whoi.edu Biology, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Kelly, Michael mkelly14@utk.edu Mathematics, University of Tennessee
Landsbergen, Kim landsbergen.2@osu.edu EEOB, The Ohio State University
LaRiviere, Jacob jlarivi1@utk.edu Economics, University of Washington
Leander, Rachel rleander@mbi.osu.edu Mathematics, Middle Tennessee State University
Leung, Brian brian.leung2@mcgill.ca Biology, McGill University
Liebhold, Andrew aliebhold@fs.fed.us US Forest ServiceNorthern Research Station, Northern Research Station
Manore, Carrie cmanore@tulane.edu Mathematics, Tulane University
Matsuda, Hiroyuki matsuda@ynu.ac.jp Environment and Information Sciences, University
McCarthy, Maeve mmccarthy@murraystate.edu Mathematics & Statistics, Murray State University
Moritz, Mark moritz.42@osu.edu Anthropology, The Ohio State University
Mummert, Anna mummerta@marshall.edu Mathematics, Marshall University
Pomeroy, Laura pomeroy.26@osu.edu Veterinary Preventive Medicine, Ohio State University
Possingham, Hugh h.possingham@uq.edu.au Centre for Biodiversity & Conservation Science, Centre for Biodiversity & Conservation Science
Potts, Matthew mdpotts@berkeley.edu ESPM, UC Berkeley
Rebarber, Richard rrebarber1@unl.edu Mathematics, University of Nebraska
Regan, Helen helen.regan@ucr.edu Biology, University of California, Riverside
Ross, Noam noam.ross@gmail.com Environmental Science and Policy, University of California-Davis
Shea, Katriona k-shea@psu.edu Department of Biology, Pennsylvania State University
Sims, Charles cbsims@utk.edu Economics, University of Tennessee
Springborn, Mike mspringborn@ucdavis.edu Environmental Science and Policy, UC Davis
Wilen, James wilen@primal.ucdavis.edu Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of California, Davis
Yamanaka, Takehiko apple@affrc.go.jp BioDiversity Division, National Institute for Agro-Environmental Sciences
Yokomizo, Hiroyuki hiroyuki.yokomizo@nies.go.jp Center for Environmental Risk Research, National Institute for Environmental Studies
Zeeman, Mary Lou mlzeeman@bowdoin.edu Department of Mathematics, Bowdoin College
"Buying" conservation benefits from private landowners

Conservation organizations often rely on incentive payments to private landowners to "buy" conservation benefits. In evaluating the efficiency of such programs, conservation biologists have often assumed contracts can be acquired at landowners' willingness-to-accept. Were this possible it would represent something of a best possible outcome for conservation from a negotiation with private landowners. Drawing on game theory, optimization methods and agent-based simulations, I will examine how conservation outcomes would be affected if landowners instead were to hold out for payments over and above their willingness-to-accept to gain some surplus from the transaction.

Avoiding tipping points in the management of ecological systems: a non-parametric Bayesian approach to structural uncertainty

Model uncertainty and limited data coverage are fundamental challenges to robust ecosystem management. These challenges are acutely highlighted by concerns that many ecological systems may contain tipping points. Before a collapse, we do not know where the tipping points lie, if the exist at all. Hence, we know neither a complete model of the system dynamics nor do we have access to data in some large region of state-space where such a tipping point might exist. These two sources of uncertainty frustrate state-of-the-art parametric approaches to decision theory and optimal control. I will illustrate how a non-parametric approach using a Gaussian Process prior provides a more flexible representation of this inherent uncertainty. Consequently, we can adapt the Gaussian Process prior to a stochastic dynamic programming framework in order to make robust management predictions under both model and uncertainty and limited data.

Vector Dynamics and Disease Control

In this talk I will focus on the role of vector dynamics and its ecological and economic implications for disease control. Genetic methods of controlling insects and agricultural pests have advanced in recent years but their economic benefits remain largely unexplored. By integrating epidemiological and economic approaches we can build sensible mathematical models for exploring the implications of vector control on levels of disease burden. In this talk I will illustrate the ways that we have approached this for understanding Dengue dynamics and some of the subtle ways that understanding human movement and flows are important for implementing disease invention strategies.

Optimal adaptive management over time and space

Using stochastic dynamic programming techniques, we can optimize our decisions over time and space to maximize our chance of achieving our conservation goal at a minimum cost. In doing so, we assume that although uncertain, the future dynamics of the system can be represented using transition probabilities. When several future dynamics of the system are possible (model uncertainty), finding the best decision over time becomes an adaptive management problem. Unfortunately adaptive management problems suffer from a lack of solution methods. I will demonstrate how partially observable Markov decision processes (POMDP) can help solving large adaptive management problems over time and space.

Integrating Ecologu and Economics to Manage Bioinvasions: where, when, who, and how much?

Biological invasions are spatial-dynamic processes — they unfold over space and time, driven by a combination of reproduction and dispersal. Consequently, their management requires weighing not only how much and when to invest in control to reduce their damages, but where controls should be applied. Furthermore, invasions unfold in landscapes comprising numerous, independently managed properties such that their spread depends on the control choices of many landowners. Here I present three bioeconomic studies that address these complexities of bioinvasion management. They examine 1) optimal surveillance design for early detection of invasions, 2) optimal spatial control strategies, and 3) individual and cooperative invasion management.

Linking Individual Movements and Population Patterns in Dynamic Landscapes

Real landscapes are dynamic in space and time, and the scales over which such variation occurs can determine the success of different conservation strategies for resident species. Within such landscapes, real species rely on a variety of individual-level behaviors for movement and navigation. Movement behaviors such as long-distance searching and fine-scale foraging are often intermixed but operate on vastly different spatial and temporal scales. Individual experience, life-history traits, and resource dynamics combine to shape population-level patterns such as range residency, migration, and nomadism.


I will discuss how a combination of empirical movement data and powerful statistical approaches ("animal models" of pedigree effects; semi-variance functions) can be used to inform our understanding of animal movement and help guide conservation planning. Animal models can be used to control for genetic variation among individuals while exploring alternative hypotheses about other factors that influence animal movement. Semi-variance approaches can be used to identify multiple movement modes and solve the sampling rate problem for tracking data, allowing for the identification of critical scales for movement. Together these approaches can help reveal the relationships among individual movements, landscape dynamics, and population level patterns.

Regional Natural Resource Management: Comments on Optimization, Control, Feasibility and Future Directions

I will discuss a few major national and international initiatives that impinge on sustainability of resource management. Based on experiences with one of the larger projects on natural system restoration in the Everglades of South Florida, I will provide some insight and lessons learned in linking models to planning and policy. These will in part emphasize the difficulty in obtaining concensus on control objectives and the benefits of taking a rather less optimization- focused perspective but one considering robustness of relative rankings of alternatives. Finally I will point out some challenges in the topic areas of the workshop that may benefit from mathematical approaches.

Challenges in the management of natural systems

I will give an overview of mathematical challenges that arise in developing management strategies for natural systems. The emphasis will be on issues that arise from the nature of the biological systems, including, but not limited to, limited data, nonlinearities, stochasticity, constraints that arise from biological issues, and time scales. I will illustrate the concepts by starting with some of the best studied examples, which come from fisheries, then discuss issues of invasive species, and finally move on to lesser studied and more poorly specified areas. The goal of the talk will be to set the stage for the workshop and initial discussions.

Comparing Uncertainties: How to tell what is Most Important

Management of stochastic renewable natural resources occurs in the presence of various forms of uncertainty (e.g., parametric, model, and state).While the implications of different types of uncertainty for management have been carefully analyzed individually, it is not clear when each different type of uncertainty is relatively more or less important for the resource manager.In this talk, I will attempt to define three different forms of uncertainty.I will then discuss some of the challenges of comparing the value of learning about these different uncertainties within the same resource management problem. I will then describe and simulate one candidate method for comparing two different types of uncertainty.

Data, uncertainty and risk in biological invasions

Risk analysis are increasingly recognized as important for prioritizing effort in biological invasions. I will review the state of the science on alien species risk assessment, identify where research has been focused, and identify gaps in the literature, which if filled may improve the science and application of risk analyses. I will walk through individual studies estimating components of risk, given data available. Finally, I will present the outcome of a pathway level bioeconomic risk analysis of an existing policy for invasive species.

The maths of biodiversity actions

My talk will be flexible and depend in the events of the first day. I can cover the application of Marxan and Marxan with zones to conservation planning with a focus on ecosystem services. The disadvantages of using Marxan and other spatial planning tools will be explained. I can also explain how we have calculated biodiversity benefits for offsetting.

Disturbance, diversity and invasion ecology

Disturbances are ubiquitous in nature, and are believed to be strong drivers of both ecological diversity and species invasion. The need to address the impacts of environmental disturbance is increasingly urgent in the face of anthropogenic alterations to existing disturbance regimes. I will discuss how an ecological niche-based theory of disturbance, encompassing five interacting aspects (frequency, intensity, duration, extent and timing), can be used to study a wide range of issues related to disturbance regimes and their effects on biological systems. This conceptual framework allows an integrated study of disturbance across levels of biological organization: from the individual through to the population, the community and entire ecosystems. Ongoing theoretical and empirical research not only informs us about when disturbances are likely to pose a problem, but also lets us assess how we can manipulate disturbances to achieve desired management outcomes. As disturbances of many types are increasingly used to manage ecosystems, this approach therefore can be applied to a wide range of management issues. Managers and policy makers need to be able to make reliable predictions — only if we can anticipate them, can we avoid or ameliorate the impacts of such disturbances.

video image

Comparing Uncertainties: How to tell what is Most Important
Jacob LaRiviere

Management of stochastic renewable natural resources occurs in the presence of various forms of uncertainty (e.g., parametric, model, and state).While the implications of different types of uncertainty for management have been carefully anal

video image

Vector Dynamics and Disease Control
Michael Bonsall

In this talk I will focus on the role of vector dynamics and its ecological and economic implications for disease control. Genetic methods of controlling insects and agricultural pests have advanced in recent years but their economic benefit

video image

Disturbance, diversity and invasion ecology
Katriona Shea

Disturbances are ubiquitous in nature, and are believed to be strong drivers of both ecological diversity and species invasion. The need to address the impacts of environmental disturbance is increasingly urgent in the face of anthropogenic

video image

Integrating Ecologu and Economics to Manage Bioinvasions: where, when, who, and how much?
Rebecca Epanchin-Niell

Biological invasions are spatial-dynamic processes €” they unfold over space and time, driven by a combination of reproduction and dispersal. Consequently, their management requires weighing not only how much and when to in

video image

"Buying" conservation benefits from private landowners
Paul Armsworth

Conservation organizations often rely on incentive payments to private landowners to "buy" conservation benefits. In evaluating the efficiency of such programs, conservation biologists have often assumed contracts can be acquired a

video image

Challenges in the management of natural systems
Alan Hastings

I will give an overview of mathematical challenges that arise in developing management strategies for natural systems. The emphasis will be on issues that arise from the nature of the biological systems, including, but not limited to, limite