Posts

What Is a[n Urban] Watershed?

Watershed are urban features Watersheds in Baltimore Watersheds are important parts of both wild and civilized places.  In both city and countryside, watersheds express the flow of water, with its power to connect places, its ability to accumulate and move chemicals and materials, its capacity to support rich biological activity, and its power to nourish […]

Ecosystem as Place; Ecosystem as Network

The most frequently cited definition of the ecosystem concept owes its origin to Sir Arthur G. Tansley in 1935 (Pickett and Grove 2009).  It has proven to be a very flexible concept, and can be applied to any scale that includes aggregations of physical environment and organisms, plus the interactions among all physical and biological […]

The Science of Connection in a Disconnected Place

The news from Baltimore has been sad and disturbing over the past few weeks.  Urban ecologists, like all ecologists, I think, love the places where they work.  So I must remark on what is happening in Baltimore and what it means to me, as a scientist who has committed more than two decades to research […]

The Kind of Solution A City Is

A while ago I wrote about Jane Jacobs’ insight that cities were complex systems[i].  The stone that she dropped in the urban pond in 1961 has rippled widely, and the ideas of cities as complex adaptive systems, with emergent properties, good and bad resilience, and non-linear dynamics now guide much cutting edge urban research. Of […]