Shifting baselines to thresholds: Reframing exploitation in the marine environment

Lane M. Atmore*, Magie Aiken*, Fabricio Furni

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

6 Citaten (Scopus)
51 Downloads (Pure)


Current research on anthropogenic impacts on marine ecosystems often relies on the concept of a “baseline,” which aims to describe ecosystems prior to human contact. Recent research is increasingly showing that humans have been involved in marine ecosystems for much longer than previously understood. We propose a theoretical framework oriented around a system of “thresholds” referring to system-wide changes in human culture, ecosystem dynamics, and molecular evolution. The concept of the threshold allows conceptual space to account for the fluid nature of ecosystems throughout time while providing a critical framework for understanding drivers of ecosystem change. We highlight practical research approaches for exploring thresholds in the past and provide key insights for future adaptation to a changing world. To ensure ecological and societal goals for the future are met, it is critical that research efforts are contextualized into a framework that incorporates human society as integral to ecology and evolution.

Originele taal-2English
Aantal pagina's15
TijdschriftFrontiers in Marine Science
StatusPublished - 19-nov.-2021

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