An integrative approach to conceptualizing sustainable resilience


Vulnerability, resilience, and sustainability are three concepts commonly used in assessing the quality of a variety of systems. While each can be applied independently when performing risk analysis, there is growing interest across multiple disciplines in understanding how these concepts can be integrated when considering complex adaptive systems, such as communities. In this paper, we identify issues related to the use of these respective concepts in assessing complex adaptive systems, and describe how these issues may produce imbalanced results and maladaptive outcomes. We identify five critical areas where alignment and integration across concepts can lead to improved system assessment. As a result, we introduce a new paradigm, sustainable resilience, in which these concepts are integrated to enable alignment of adaptation and transformation strategies with desired resilience outcomes. This work provides the foundation for the development of an integrated assessment framework to help guide informed risk-based decisionmaking for sustainable and resilient systems.



Sustainable Resilience, Vulnerability, Integrative framework, Transformation, Complex adaptive systems