Beijer Discussion Paper
Uncertainty can help protect local commons in the face of climate change

Caroline Schill and Juan Carlos Rocha. 2019. Beijer Discussion Paper 270: Uncertainty can help protect local commons in the face of climate change. Beijer Discussion Paper Series.

Climate change is likely to trigger abrupt and potentially persistent changes in the structure and function of marine ecosystems1,2. Such ‘regime shifts’3 threaten the livelihoods of millions of people reliant on small-scale fisheries4. Yet, it is largely unknown how resource users cope with regime shifts, their uncertainty, and impacts. Here, we assess the potential for local collective action to avert uncertain, yet catastrophic, regime shifts....

Beijer Discussion Paper
Cooperation in the face of thresholds, risk and uncertainty

Rocha, J., C. Schill, L. M. Saavedra-Díaz, R. del Pilar Moreno and J. Higinio Maldonado. 2019. Beijer Discussion Paper 268: Cooperation in the face of thresholds, risk and uncertainty. Beijer Discussion Paper Series.

Cooperation is thought to be a necessary condition to solve collective dilemmas such as climate change or the sustainable use of common-pool resources. Yet, it is poorly understood how situations pervaded by thresholds shape the behaviour of people facing collective dilemmas. Here we provide empirical evidence that resource users facing thresholds maintain on average cooperative behaviours by maximising their individual earnings while ensuring future group...

Journal article
A more dynamic understanding of human behaviour for the Anthropocene

Schill, C., J. M. Anderies, T. Lindahl, C. Folke, S. Polasky, JC Cárdenas, A.-S. Crépin, M. A. Janssen, J. Norberg and M. Schlüter. 2019. A more dynamic understanding of human behaviour for the Anthropocene . Nature Sustainability 2:1075–1082.

Human behaviour is of profound significance in shaping pathways towards sustainability. Yet, the approach to understanding human behaviour in many fields remains reliant on overly simplistic models. For a better understanding of the interface between human behaviour and sustainability, we take work in behavioural economics and cognitive psychology as a starting point, but argue for an expansion of this work by adopting a more dynamic...

Journal article
Inequality and the Biosphere

Hamann, M., K. Berry, T. Chaigneau, T. Curry, R. Heilmayr, P. J. G. Henriksson, J. Hentati-Sundberg, A. Jina, E. Lindkvist, Y. Lopez-Maldonado, E. Nieminen, M. Piaggio, J. Qiu, J. C. Rocha, C. Schill, A. Shepon, A. R. Tilman, I. Van Den Bijgaart, and T. Wu. 2018. Inequality and the Biosphere. Annual Review of Environment and Resources 43:1, 61-83.

Rising inequalities and accelerating global environmental change pose two of the most pressing challenges of the twenty-first century. To explore how these phenomena are linked, we apply a social-ecological systems perspective and review the literature to identify six different types of interactions (or “pathways”) between inequality and the biosphere. We find that most of the research so far has only considered one-directional effects of inequality...

Journal article
The undisciplinary journey: early-career perspectives in sustainability science

Haider, L. J., J. Hentati-Sundberg, M. Giusti, J. Goodness, M. Hamann, V.A. Masterson, M. Meacham, A. Merrie, D. Ospina, C. Schill, and H. Sinare. 2018. The undisciplinary journey: early-career perspectives in sustainability science. Sustainability Science 13:191.

The establishment of interdisciplinary Master’s and PhD programs in sustainability science is opening up an exciting arena filled with opportunities for early-career scholars to address pressing sustainability challenges. However, embarking upon an interdisciplinary endeavor as an early-career scholar poses a unique set of challenges: to develop an individual scientific identity and a strong and specific methodological skill-set, while at the same time gaining the ability...

Journal article
Cooperation Is Not Enough—Exploring Social-Ecological Micro-Foundations for Sustainable Common-Pool Resource Use

Schill C,. N.Wijermans, M. Schlüter, and T. Lindahl. 2016. Cooperation Is Not Enough—Exploring Social-Ecological Micro-Foundations for Sustainable Common-Pool Resource Use. PLoS ONE 11(11):e0165009.

Cooperation amongst resource users holds the key to overcoming the social dilemma that characterizes community-based common-pool resource management. But is cooperation alone enough to achieve sustainable resource use? The short answer is no. Developing management strategies in a complex social-ecological environment also requires ecological knowledge and approaches to deal with perceived environmental uncertainty. Recent behavioral experimental research indicates variation in the degree to which a...

Journal article
Social norms as solutions

Nyborg, K., J.M. Anderies, A. Dannenberg, T. Lindahl, C. Schill, M. Schlüter, W. N. Adger, K. J. Arrow, S. Barrett, S. Carpenter, F. S. Chapin III, A-S. Crépin, G. Daily, P. Ehrlich, C. Folke, W. Jager, N. Kautsky, S. A. Levin, O. J. Madsen, S. Polasky, M. Scheffer, B. Walker, E. U. Weber, J. Wilen, A. Xepapadeas, and A. de Zeeuw. 2016. Social norms as solutions. Science 354(6308):42-43.

Journal article
Potential disasters can turn the tragedy into success

Lindahl, T., A.-S. Crépin. and C. Schill. 2016. Potential disasters can turn the tragedy into success. Environmental and Resource Economics 65(3):657-676.

This paper presents a novel experimental design that allows testing how users of a common-pool resource respond to an endogenously driven drastic drop in the supply of the resource. We show that user groups will manage a resource more efficiently when confronted with such a non-concave resource growth function, compared to groups facing a logistic growth function. Even among cooperative groups there is a significant...

Journal article
Collective action and the risk of ecosystem regime shifts: insights from a laboratory experiment

Schill, C., T. Lindahl and A.-S. Crépin. 2015. Collective action and the risk of ecosystem regime shifts: insights from a laboratory experiment. Ecology and Society 20(1):48.

Ecosystems can undergo regime shifts that potentially lead to a substantial decrease in the availability of provisioning ecosystem services. Recent research suggests that the frequency and intensity of regime shifts increase with growing anthropogenic pressure, so understanding the underlying social-ecological dynamics is crucial, particularly in contexts where livelihoods depend heavily on local ecosystem services. In such settings, ecosystem services are often derived from common-pool resources....

Beijer Discussion Paper
Potential disasters can turn the tragedy into success

Lindahl, T., A.-S. Crépin, and C. Schill. 2014. Beijer Discussion Paper 244: Potential disasters can turn the tragedy into success. Beijer Discussion Paper Series.

This paper presents a novel experimental design that allows testing how users of a common resource respond to potential endogenously driven drastic changes in the supply of the resource. We show that user groups will manage a resource more efficiently when confronted with such a non-concave resource growth function. Even among cooperative groups there is a significant difference in behavior, although theory predicts there should...