Greetings from the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC)! While we are closed to supporting new synthesis teams, we have been busy developing open-access resources on topics related to both interdisciplinarity and sustainability. These are great for self-learning and training. Below are just a few examples. The video tutorials are developed by researchers and are professionally videographed! Please use the resources and share with colleagues. Click here to receive SESYNC newsletters.
Modeling – great for graduate students, postdocs, and researchers:
• Network Modeling for Socio-Environmental Systems This tutorial introduces networks and
their use in research.
• Use of Systems Thinking Archetypes This tutorial explains how archetypes can illuminate
coupled socio-ecological dynamics and how they can help in developing formal S-E models.
• Modeling Approaches: What are the Choices and How do we Select one? This explainer
describes the most common types of models with hints on which are best for different goals.
Bridging Disciplines and Fostering Team Research – great for synthesis teams:
• Best Practices for Interdisciplinary Team Research: Shaping a Team’s Social Environment
This explainer provides activities and tips for positively shaping a team’s social environment to
enhance the effectiveness and productivity of collaborations.
• Building an Interdisciplinary Team This explainer addresses some common questions related
to assembling interdisciplinary teams and offers tips based on team science literature and on
• What Is a Shared Mental Model? Why Are Mental Models Useful for Interdisciplinary Research? This explainer introduces shared team mental models and provides guidance on the
steps in developing these.
Core Concepts in Sustainability – self-learning/teaching for graduate students, postdocs & researchers:
• Sustainability, Resilience, and the Dimensions of Risk: Hazard, Exposure, Vulnerability
This explainer covers: use of “resilience” by ecologists, social scientists, and socio-ecological
systems researchers; and the dimensions of risk. The next resource is a related lesson great for
workshops and classes.
• Introduction to Resilience and Sustainability – Ecological, Social, Socio-Environmental
This lesson merges ecological and social viewpoints to introduce resilience and the dimensions of
risk; it also provides an overview of the diverse perspectives and vast literature on resilience.
• Integrating Spatial Ecology and Resilience Theory to Understand Ecosystem Service Flows Lesson
This lesson is based on research integrating ecological with social benefits by
considering how spatial distributions co-influence ecosystem and social resilience; a guide to
understanding the basics of spatial resilience and applying its insights to a city.