Adaptive Management of Urban Ecosystem Restoration: Learning From Restoration Managers in Rhode Island, USA


Urban aquatic restoration can be difficult to accomplish because of complications like industrial pollutants, population density, infrastructure, and expense; however, unique opportunities in urban settings, including the potential to provide benefits to many diverse people, can make urban restoration especially rewarding. The success of urban restoration projects—even those focused primarily on ecological targets—depends on community involvement and managers considering community needs. However, research on the social barriers to urban restoration and strategies managers use to overcome them is relatively rare. This work attempts to fill that gap by presenting barriers for aquatic restoration projects in urban settings and strategies to overcome them. Building from interviews with restoration managers involved in urban aquatic restoration projects in Rhode Island, we contribute through an adaptive management approach: identifying and synthesizing the lessons learned from managers’ work in urban settings. Ultimately, we suggest potential for double- and triple-loop learning by disentangling and critiquing the frames and policy/power structures that influence decision making in urban aquatic restoration.

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Society & Natural Resources


Taylor & Francis

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