Lilian Na'ia Alessa

Lilian Na'ia Alessa
University of Idaho | UID · Department of Landscape Architecture

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92
Publications
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3,184
Citations

Publications

Publications (92)
Article
Full-text available
Scenarios of landscape change have the capacity to address spatial and temporal issues, current and future trends, and solutions that increase capacity and/or resilience in social-ecological systems and their networks. In this study, we present a resilience framework for food–energy–water systems and demonstrate it with a case study in Magic Valley...
Article
This paper examines the challenges faced by the U.S. intelligence community (IC) in recognizing and responding to the elements inherent in asymmetric competition with China. We offer that cultural and procedural impediments are negatively impacting the community’s capabilities and argue that reliance on outdated methodologies and ad hoc technology...
Article
Full-text available
As pressure on the dairy industry to reduce its environmental impact increases, efficient recycling of manure nutrients through local cropping systems becomes crucial. The aim of this study was to calculate annual nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) budgets in six counties located in the Magic Valley, Idaho and estimate what distance manure would need...
Chapter
In this chapter, the authors refer to resilience as a process predicated on the ability to accurately sense, perceive, and/or evaluate change trajectories, frequency, and magnitude. As a social process, resilience is governed by perceptions—they determine awareness, or lack thereof, of social-ecological system states and guide responsive actions un...
Article
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New applied approaches are needed to address urgent, global environmental issues. Practitioners, scholars, and policy makers alike call for increased integration of natural and social sciences to develop new frameworks for better addressing the range of contemporary environmental issues. From a theoretical perspective, social–ecological systems (SE...
Article
This paper applies a social metabolism framework and energy flow analysis for evaluating agroecosystem and land use transitions in food-energy-water systems using the Upper Snake River Basin (USBR), Idaho, USA as a case-study. The study area is one of the primary agricultural regions of the State of Idaho. Dairy products are the primary agricultura...
Article
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One of the factors for the success of simulation studies is close collaboration with stakeholders in developing a conceptual model. Conceptual models are a useful tool for communicating and understanding how real systems work. However, models or frameworks that are not aligned with the perceptions and understanding of local stakeholders can induce...
Article
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People in the Arctic and sub-Arctic continue to face uncertainty in their livelihoods as they contend with environmental variability and change operating at multiple scales. The arctic water resources vulnerability index (AWRVI) was proposed as a tool that arctic communities could use to assess their susceptibility to both changing biophysical cond...
Article
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Water availability and use are increasingly critical factors determining the resilience and vulnerability of communities in the Western United States (US). Historical water availability and use in the state of Idaho is synthesized by considering the biophysical drivers of climate and surface runoff alongside human drivers of land-use, hydrologic en...
Article
Adaptation to environmental change has become a necessity and a norm for many Arctic communities. We examine whether the adaptive capacity varies in different communities in Alaska with contrasting ecologies and socio-economic systems using the Arctic Water Resources Vulnerability Index (AWRVI). We applied the index to six communities in three dist...
Conference Paper
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Conceptual and mental models are useful platforms for communicating and understanding how systems work. However, models or frameworks that are not aligned with the perceptions and understanding of the local stakeholders can propagate model output errors and uncertainties. This paper focuses on two sources of epistemic uncertainty in building food-e...
Article
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Environmental monitoring and observation by members of local communities have become increasingly common in the US and Canada over the past several decades. During the same period, social–ecological systems (SES) science has been developed to explain and predict human and environmental interactions, but empirical methods to generate matched social...
Article
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There is a growing consensus that transdisciplinary environmental networks are required to generate knowledge of the dynamics of coupled human–natural systems (CHANs) and to assess societal and policy consequences of complex environmental issues. Few of the existing large environmental observatory networks collect much, if any, data on the CHANs co...
Article
To address socioeconomic challenges in rural Idaho, some communities have participated in a community review process through Idaho Rural Partnership’s Community Review program. To understand patterns and trends in perceptions of local assets and challenges, we used a mixed-methods approach, including aggregation and statistical analysis of survey d...
Article
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The habitat-adapted symbiosis hypothesis predicts that the most positive effects of symbiosis are expected in the most stressful sites for a plant host. Stress varies with site characteristics but also during the life cycle of a plant, with winter annuals experiencing the most stress after fall emergence. For Bromus tectorum, fecundity can vary tre...
Article
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Paleoecological and paleosocial synthesis, meaning the examination of data and patterns derived from past social and ecological systems, provides an important long-term perspective on adaptive strategies and their consequences. Data and analyses from extended timescales (centuries, millennia) have yet to be routinely incorporated into adaptive capa...
Article
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Integrative research is increasingly a priority within the scientific community and is a central goal for the evolving field of sustainability science. While it is conceptually attractive, its successful implementation has been challenging and recent work suggests that the move towards interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity in sustainability s...
Article
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In this study, we investigate perception of likely environmental change as a factor of community adaptive capacity. A comparison of perceived change with science-based assessment of change is proposed to better understand community risk assessment and decision-making. Based on this analysis, we identify shared attitudes and perceptions of change th...
Research
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The purpose of this report is to give the reader insight into a range of community-based observing (CBO) types as well as understand their appropriate applications and trade-offs. In this report, we address CBO broadly, in part as a result of a workshop held on October 4-5, 2015 at the University of Washington, and in part as a reflection of broade...
Article
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Effective and standardized assessment of social-ecological systems is crucial for supporting increased resilience of human communities and for developing adaptation strategies. However, few analytical frameworks exist to assess the social-ecological resilience and vulnerability of different landscapes. To help fill the gap in this literature, we in...
Article
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Wildland fire management has reached a crossroads. Current perspectives are not capable of answering interdisciplinary adaptation and mitigation challenges posed by increases in wildfire risk to human populations and the need to reintegrate fire as a vital landscape process. Fire science has been, and continues to be, performed in isolated “silos,”...
Article
Community-based observing networks (CBONs) use a set of human observers connected via a network to provide comprehensive data, through observations of a range of environmental variables. Invariably, these observers are Indigenous peoples whose intimacy with the land- and waterscape is high. Certain observers can recall events precisely, describe ch...
Article
Water is a key issue in sustainable urban development. SWIM (Simulating Water, Individuals and Management) is an agent-based model of water supply, management structure, and residential water consumer perception and behavior. Initial work applied data mining on newspaper articles to map networks of water management institutions and structures. SWIM...
Article
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Community-based monitoring (CBM) in the Arctic is gaining increasing support from a wide range of interested parties, including community members, scientists, government agencies, and funders. Through CBM initiatives, Arctic residents conduct or are involved in ongoing observing and monitoring activities. Arctic Indigenous peoples have been observi...
Article
Full-text available
Community-based monitoring (CBM) in the Arctic is gaining increasing support from a wide range of interested parties, including community members, scientists, government agencies, and funders. Through CBM initiatives, Arctic residents conduct or are involved in ongoing observing and monitoring activities. Arctic Indigenous peoples have been observi...
Article
Situated in the Bering Strait region of Russia and Alaska, the ethnographic documentation presented here elucidates the role of the olfactory aesthetic in shaping human attitudes toward food. The focus is on the practices connected with the use of marine mammal products and recipes prepared by means of aging and fermentation. Since recent times, th...
Article
Agriculture is a severely underdeveloped industry in Alaska and throughout most of the Subarctic. Growers and entrepreneurs must overcome a diverse set of challenges to achieve greater sustainability in northern communities where resilience is threatened by food insecurity and challenges to northern agriculture have limited the industry. However, s...
Article
Local agriculture, food security and food supply are limited in Alaska, as well as in much of the circumpolar North. These limitations stem from a suite of challenges that have never been well characterized, categorized, or wholly defined. We identify these challenges as being environmental, geophysical, biological, or socioeconomic in nature, noti...
Article
Alaska is food insecure, importing the vast majority of its agricultural products and commodities and maintaining a minimal year-round food supply. Much of the circumpolar North, with some notable exceptions, is also food insecure and similarly reliant on foods imported from outside regions. The stark differences in food policies, food security, an...
Article
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Natural language processing (NLP) and named entity recognition (NER) techniques are applied to collections of newspaper articles from four cities in the U.S. Southwest. The results are used to generate a network of water management institutions that reflect public perceptions of water management and the structure of water management in these areas....
Article
The Bering Sea Sub-Network, a Community-Based Observation Network, was initiated to improve knowledge of environmental changes occurring in the Bering Sea and to enable scientists, Arctic communities and governments to predict, plan and respond. Climate change can affect the health of the social-ecological system of Indigenous communities through n...
Article
Alaska Native coastal communities interact with the marine environment in many ways, especially through the harvest of fish, marine mammals, and seabirds. The spatial characteristics of this interaction are often depicted in terms of subsistence use areas: the places where harvests and associated travel occur. Another way to consider the interactio...
Article
Warming trends in some parts of Alaska have previously been linked to the degradation of permafrost, water resources, and community infrastructure. As the topic of climate change continues to garner media attention and public interest, temperature trend estimations are likely to play a greater role in Alaska's decision-making and development of pol...
Article
Individuals have distinct roles within communities in the development of adaptive responses to environmental change. We articulate the phenomenon of different roles, or agent types, that people take in initiating, supporting, or opposing collective organization in remote, resource dependent communities. Based on both participant observations and in...
Article
New advances in spatial technology enable ethnographic data and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to be integrated in innovative ways. These include mapping and virtual reconstruction of buildings no longer standing, of routes used for transportation and hunting, and other spatial ethnographic data, visualized in three dimensions (3D). Represent...
Article
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The introduction of new technologies into small remote communities can alter how individuals acquire knowledge about their surrounding environment. This is especially true when technologies that satisfy basic needs, such as freshwater use, create a distance (i.e., diminishing exposure) between individuals and their environment. However, such distan...
Article
Alessa, Lilian, Mark Altaweel, Andrew Kliskey, Christopher Bone, William Schnabel, and Kalb Stevenson, 2011. Alaska’s Freshwater Resources: Issues Affecting Local and International Interests. Journal of the American Water Resources Association (JAWRA) 47(1):143-157. DOI: 10.1111/j.1752-1688.2010.00498.x Abstract: The State of Alaska faces a broad r...
Article
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Quantifying temperature trends across multiple decades in Alaska is an essential component for informing policy on climate change in the region. However, Alaska’s climate is governed by a complex set of drivers operating at various spatial and temporal scales, which we posit should result in a sensitivity of trend estimates to the selection of refe...
Article
As anthropogenic and environmental behaviors rapidly evolve many ecosystems and communities, managers of natural resources, scientists, and other stakeholders increasingly need tools that can rapidly alert them to emerging events that can affect social well-being. Data detailing such behaviors may derive from textual sources with varying content, r...
Article
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Social and environmental factors affecting land use change are among the most significant drivers transforming the planet. Such change has been and continues to be monitored through the use of satellite imagery, aerial photography, and technical reports. While these monitoring tools are useful in observing the empirical results of land use change a...
Article
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Field irrigation is costly in arid regions, and over-fertilization of farmland can lead to high groundwater nitrate levels and significant environmental challenges. Integrative aquaculture and agriculture (IAA) systems allow the reuse of water and nutrients to offset production costs while promoting greater sustainability. The aim of this study was...
Article
Technology is often touted as a collective solution to environmental problems. However, what if technology results in trade-offs in long-term resilience that ultimately pose a critical vulnerability for society? In this study, we examine the change in values of freshwater from traditional to convenience-oriented values in remote, resource-dependent...
Article
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This paper presents a model, using concepts from artificial neural networks, that explains how small rural communities make decisions that affect access to potable freshwater. Field observations indicate that social relationships as well as individual goals and perceptions of decision makers have a strong influence on decisions that are made by com...
Article
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Agent-based models (ABMs), perhaps used along with other methods, are increasingly being applied to address problems involving social-ecological systems (SES). However, systematic and standardized techniques for organizing data requirements and collecting information for such models are generally not applied. Defining the types of data that need to...
Article
CLIMATE CHANGE AND GLOBALIZATION IN THE ARCTIC. CarinaE.KeskitaloH.. 2008. London and Sterling, VA: Earthscan. xii + 254 p, hardcover. ISBN 978-1-84407-528-7. - Volume 46 Issue 1 - Lilian Alessa, Andrew Kliskey
Article
Altaweel, Mark R., Lilian N. Alessa, and Andrew D. Kliskey, 2009. Forecasting Resilience in Arctic Societies: Creating Tools for Assessing Social–Hydrological Systems. Journal of the American Water Resources Association (JAWRA) 45(6):1379-1389. Abstract: Arctic communities are increasingly faced with social–ecological changes that act at variable s...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods The trajectories, patterns, and evolution exhibited by ecosystems and the way they are currently structured now force us to re-examine the dominant approaches to their description, interactions and management. We propose that a paradigm shift is necessary in which we re-integrate the human animal with the natural world....
Article
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. While these studies prov...
Article
Human activities now dominate most of the ice-free terrestrial surface. A recent article presents a classification and global map of human-influenced biomes of the world that provides a novel and potentially appropriate framework for projecting changes in earth-system dynamics.
Article
Full-text available
People in the Arctic face uncertainty in their daily lives as they contend with environmental changes at a range of scales from local to global. Freshwater is a critical resource to people, and although water resource indicators have been developed that operate from regional to global scales and for midlatitude to equatorial environments, no approp...
Article
Climate change exerts influence on the globe over relatively long temporal and at broad spatial scales. However, at the local scale in which communities undertake their daily activities, changes in land-use may result in changes that accumulate and manifest more quickly in the landscape. In this paper we set out a methodology for identifying social...
Article
This paper advances the concept of a coupled social–ecological system (SES), where human and biophysical systems are closely linked, to examine and explain variations in landscape values perceived by people in their region. In this paper, we describe an approach that allows the mapping of SES by linking survey research with geographic information s...
Article
Full-text available
Agent-based modelling has become an increasingly important tool for scholars studying social and social-ecological systems, but there are no community standards on describing, implementing, testing and teaching these tools. This paper reports on the establishment of the Open Agent-Based Modelling Consortium, www.openabm.org, a community effort to f...
Article
This paper provides empirical evidence to support existing anecdotal studies regarding the mechanisms by which human communities become vulnerable to rapid changes in freshwater resources on the Seward Peninsula, Alaska. We interviewed adults, stratified by age, sex, and extended family, in Inupiat communities on the Seward Peninsula. Using categor...
Article
This paper discusses the potential impacts of climate change on community drinking water sources on the Seward Peninsula. The vulnerability assessment was largely based on the likelihood that the water source would be impacted by a change in the permafrost regime. Factors that were considered were the likely change in the permafrost condition of a...
Article
Full-text available
Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2007. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Geophysical Research 112 (2007): G04S54, doi:10.1029/2006JG000353. Dramatic changes have been observed in the Arctic over the last ce...
Article
This paper provides empirical evidence to suggest that modernization, and its resulting infrastructure, creates a filter which distances people from the resources they use. The data presented suggest that installation of a municipal water supply, piped water to residences, affects a community's ability to perceive change in surrounding water source...
Article
Full-text available
To date, many communities of practice (COP) in the social sciences have been struggling with how to deal with rapidly growing bodies of information. Many CoPs across broad disciplines have turned to community frameworks for complexity modeling (CFCMs) but this strategy has been slow to be discussed let alone adopted by the social sciences communiti...