1. Perceptions and Spatial effects of Human-Bear Encounters across the Pacific Rim

      brwon bears

      In Russian:

      Вы когда-нибудь видели медведя в дикой природе?

      Поделитесь своим опытом и мнениями с нами!

      Примите участие в нашем исследование о взаимодействии человека и медведя и заполните анкету:

      Нажмите здесь


      Исходная информация: Мы проводим опрос о встречах человека с медведями. Если вы отдыхаете или проводите много времени в дикой природе, где есть медведи, вы представляете особый интерес для нашего исследования. Это исследование является частью кандидатской диссертации, готовящейся на базе Университета Аляски в Фэйрбанксе и Университета Аляски в Анкоридже, с целью улучшения управления местами активного отдыха и сохранения дикой природы.
      В зависимости от вашего опыта, разнообразия видов активного отдыха и количества встреч с медведями в дикой природе, этот опрос может занять полчаса, но возможно и меньше. Вам должно быть 18 лет для права участия в опросе-исследовании. Ваше участие в данном опросе-исследовании является добровольным. Вы имеете право закончить опрос в любое время и не отвечать на любой из вопросов, если вы не хотите этого. Прежде, чем мы начнем исследование, мы хотели бы зачитать вам Соглашение. Это Соглашение вы можете оставить у вас, оно содержит дополнительную информацию об исследовании.


      In English:

      Share your Experiences and perspectives on

      human-bear encounters with us!


      Participate in our human-bear encounter survey: click here


  1. This study is the first approach to treat human-bear interactions as a social-ecological system across time and space. Analyses combine both, social and ecological methodologies. The goal is to obtain detailed and structured results describing the linkages between social perceptions, land-use change and urbanisation. Those linkages will help to identify key factors that can achieve resilient bear conservation while managing for an increasing human footprint in Northern regions.

    On the spatial scale this research approach compares Sakhalin Island, Russian Far East, with Alaska, focussing on the human-urban interface around Yuzhno, the largest city on Sakhalin Island, and the Anchorage-Kenai Peninsula region in Southern Alaska. Comparison across the Pacific Rim holds its strength in similarities (like economic interests in oil and gas development, fisheries) and key differences (implementation of a bear management) between regions. Methods include a mixed methods approach to gain qualitative and quantitative information from local people, remote sensing to generate maps in relation to urbanisation and land-use, and predictive modelling analysing relationships between parameters. The time-extend combines data from the 1990ies till today in three 10 year intervals. All research is carried out in both study regions in the same fashion, and compared will help understand key factors increasing human-bear encounters in each region. Results will show positive as well as negative (conflict) encounters between humans and bears, and model hot spots; for both encounter types in relation to urbanization and habitat. Additionally residentsperceptions will be compared, and future human-bear encounters predicted.

    To read up on Consent, please click here


    For further information, please contact:

    Kim Jochum, PhD candidate
    Resilience and Adaptive Management (RAM) Group, University of Alaska Anchorage &
    Biology and Wildlife Department, University of Alaska Fairbanks

    RAM Group, Biological Sciences, UAA
    3101 Science Circle, Anchorage, AK 99508, USA
    Phone 907‐786‐7749

    Homepage Kim Jochum

2. Community of Practice: Agent Based Modelling for the Social Sciences (NSF #0623162)

  1. Ongoing research and a workshop about agent based modelling (ABM), for more ABM information click here. For information on the ABM workshop, including video presentations click here.

3. The Urban Elders Project

  1. The Urban Elders project focuses on local environmental knowledge specifically on perceptions and knowledge that is related to water resources and water use that may contribute to resilience and adaptation to change, that Elders from various cultural backgrounds in the greater Anchorage region have. For more information click here.

4. BSSN (NSF #0634079)

  1. The Bering Sea Sub-Network is a regional initiative of community-based organizations in Western Alaska and Northeast Russia for the collection and local management of a part of regional research and monitoring data required for a pan-arctic perspective on environmental and biological changes.The overall goal of BSSN is to improve the scientific knowledge of the environmental changes in the BSSN region that have significance for understanding of pan-arctic processes, enabling scientists, arctic communities and governments to predict, plan and respond to these changes. For more information please visit the BSSN website at

5. Resilience Mapping as a Tool for characterizing Complexity in Social Ecological Systems:
(NSF OPP #0327296, 0531148, 0328686)

  1. We have developed methodologies that can be used to combine social and biophysical information in a temporal and spatially explicit format. Using GIS as a simple tool and spatial analysis techniques we can analyze both the geographic and temporal extent of processes and interactions. An important component of this analysis is to understand areas of perceived value in the environment (e.g., economic) in relation to actual data. Below are some maps for the Kenai and Seward Peninsulas showing “vulnerability hotspots”. Vulnerability definitions are derived from community-based data as well as expert consensus. The social-ecological system (SES) may then be visualized as a critical first step for resource management. Our focus is on balanced resource development: from tourism to mining.

    Hotspots maps for perceived biological value for six Kenai Peninsula communities

    Map showing the location of mines and future mining prospects

    Social Ecological System maps

6. Resilience Analysis: Cognition and Adaptive Capacity (NSF OPP 0327296)

  1. We are developing methodologies to integrate a range of temporal scales of change into our analyses. For example, impacts of a new industry to a community may bring fast change in the form of economic affluence. However, increased affluence of a community may bring a steadily increasing population. Integration of the lag-effect of population growth is critical to understanding realistic futures for small-resource dependent communities that are subjected to short-term economic gains. Below is a simplified model of how perception of change (cognitive complexity) interacts with actual change. These two overarching dynamics elicit feedbacks which create slow and fast responders that can be articulated using agent-based models (ABM).

    Model of Cognitive Complexity


7. Resilience Application Case Study: Non-Extractive Development (Earthwatch Institute)

  1. There is strong evidence for the global transition from nature-dominated to human-dominated environmental changes, synonymous with the transition from an eco-social to social-ecological system. Over the last few decades, the ecotourism sector has struggled with a similar transition. The mandates of many preferred ecotourism venues (e.g., national parks, wilderness areas, and similar protected area constructions) have been repeatedly challenged as managers struggle to maintain visitation and disturbance within the nebulous threshold that separates a nature-dominated from human-dominated environment. To be successful, managers must maintain impacts within thresholds separating conventional tourism from ecotourism and unimpaired from impaired for future generations. Increasing recognition of indigenous rights to land-claims, to self-determine, and subsist on traditionally used species, necessitates novel and progressive analysis of these linked social-ecological systems (SESs) and the designation of impacts within them.


8. Resilience Concepts: Anthropogenic Gates (Theory Development)

  1. Current interest in climate change and rapid shifts in ecological assemblages (frequently termed regime-shift) has resulted in rich biophysical data (including paleo-data) that have powerful synergistic value to interdisciplinary work with the social sciences. The biophysical data isolates time periods of rapid change. These can then be used to enhance our ability to identify and articulate differing scales of social-ecological processes, their linkages, feedbacks, and thresholds, as well as the epistemology of factors that facilitated or impeded coupled social-ecological resilience. We are developing methodologies to assist in the assessment of systems closer to or farther from a rapid functional transition threshold, termed a "gate". In modernity, many of these "gates" are entered as a consequence of human activity and thus termed "anthropogenic gates". We are using theoretical models of intra- and inter-system non-linear responses, adaptive cycles and resilience to demonstrate variables with applicability and value to understanding locally sustainable relationships between social adaptive capacityand a changing environment. We propose that we can identify "fast" and "slow" linked hierarchies which operate on local to global scales, respectively.