“Pulse” and “press” disturbances…

Well, this is useful (to me at least)…

A disturbance that occurs as a relatively discrete event in time is referred to here as a “pulse” disturbance, while more gradual or cumulative pressure on a system is referred to as a “press” disturbance. Both types of disturbances can be part of the natural variability of a social-ecological system. Understanding a disturbance regime, i.e., the pattern of disturbance events over time, can inform how to work with the disturbance regime as opposed to attempting to control or prevent it, which may ultimately weaken a system’s resilience.

Disturbance regimes can also change over time and have an inherent degree of uncertainty. Exactly when a lightning bolt might ignite a forest fire is impossible to predict, but estimates of fuel load, degree of connectedness to surrounding forests, stand maturity, and weather conditions can help reduce the level of uncertainty around the timing and size of a future fire. Whether your goals involve sustainable harvests, securing infrastructure, or protecting habitat, accommodating and mitigating disturbances can, over the long term, minimize the impact of individual events.

from Resilience Alliance. 2010. Assessing resilience in social-ecological systems: Workbook for practitioners. Version 2.0.
Online: http://www.resalliance.org/3871.php

Far be it from me to suggest that activists need to think about being (transruptively) both pulse and press disturbances…

About dwighttowers

Below the surface...
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