Toward urban frameworks accommodating change in urban cultural landscapes

Characterizing and understanding social-ecological systems (SESs) is increasingly necessary to answer questions about the development of sustainable human settlements.To date, much of the literature on SES analysis has focused on “neat” systems involving a single type of resource, a group of users, and a governance system.

Social-ecological units represent the interactions between the biophysical and socioeconomic subsystems at local scale.Through a review of these notions that presently remain isolated from the contemporary mainstream resilience and climate change discourses, this paper proposes an urban morphological theoretical framework that establishes theoretical and empirical links between urban form on the one hand, and climate change adaptation and resilience on the other.With urban morphology as its underpinning, the proposed theoretical framework identifies a set of variables that could potentially influence the resilience of urban form, hence, are proposed to measure its resilience to climate change.Currently, both the planning and climate change literature highlight the concept of resilience to facilitate long-term adaptation strategies.Yet, decades before the onset of climate change science, uncertainty was dealt with in the urban planning and design literature since the latter half of the 20th century through various notions analogous to resilience.

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