Ecosystem Services as Boundary Objects for Transdisciplinary Collaboration

Cara Steger, Shana Hirsch, Cody Evers, Benjamin Branoff, Maria Petrova, Max Nielsen-Pincus, Chloe Wardropper, Carena J. van Riper

Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

Abstract

The ecosystem services (ES) framework has potential to bring transdisciplinary teams together to achieve societal goals. Some label ES as “boundary objects” that help integrate diverse forms of knowledge across social groups and organizational scales. However, this classification masks complexities that arise from unique characteristics of ES types (i.e., provisioning, regulating, and cultural), which influence their ability to function as boundary objects. We argue that interpretive flexibility and material structures interact in distinct ways across ES types throughout a boundary object “life cycle.” Viewing a 2015 U.S. federal memorandum as a catalyst, we critically evaluate the evolution of ES and its role as a boundary object. We propose that provisioning and regulating services are transitioning out of boundary object status, moving into a more standardized state. However, we anticipate that cultural services may continue to behave as boundary objects if collaborators maintain them as such. This shift in the functionality of ES as boundary objects is an important consideration for future research that attempts to reach across social worlds and disciplinary perspectives. We urge collaborations to rely on the most relevant disciplinary knowledge, rather than allowing the ease of standardized solutions to dictate the boundary of a given problem.

LanguageEnglish (US)
Pages153-160
Number of pages8
JournalEcological Economics
Volume143
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

Fingerprint

Boundary objects
Ecosystem services
ecosystem service
Provisioning
services
Catalyst
Social groups
Life cycle
Interpretive
Functionality
Cultural influences
cultural influence
life cycle
catalyst
social group
material

Keywords

  • Boundary objects
  • Collaboration
  • Cultural services
  • Provisioning services
  • Regulating services
  • Standards
  • Transdisciplinary research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Economics and Econometrics

Cite this

Steger, C., Hirsch, S., Evers, C., Branoff, B., Petrova, M., Nielsen-Pincus, M., ... van Riper, C. J. (2018). Ecosystem Services as Boundary Objects for Transdisciplinary Collaboration. Ecological Economics, 143, 153-160. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.07.016

Ecosystem Services as Boundary Objects for Transdisciplinary Collaboration. / Steger, Cara; Hirsch, Shana; Evers, Cody; Branoff, Benjamin; Petrova, Maria; Nielsen-Pincus, Max; Wardropper, Chloe; van Riper, Carena J.

In: Ecological Economics, Vol. 143, 01.01.2018, p. 153-160.

Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

Steger, C, Hirsch, S, Evers, C, Branoff, B, Petrova, M, Nielsen-Pincus, M, Wardropper, C & van Riper, CJ 2018, 'Ecosystem Services as Boundary Objects for Transdisciplinary Collaboration' Ecological Economics, vol 143, pp. 153-160. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.07.016
Steger C, Hirsch S, Evers C, Branoff B, Petrova M, Nielsen-Pincus M et al. Ecosystem Services as Boundary Objects for Transdisciplinary Collaboration. Ecological Economics. 2018 Jan 1;143:153-160. Available from, DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.07.016
Steger, Cara ; Hirsch, Shana ; Evers, Cody ; Branoff, Benjamin ; Petrova, Maria ; Nielsen-Pincus, Max ; Wardropper, Chloe ; van Riper, Carena J./ Ecosystem Services as Boundary Objects for Transdisciplinary Collaboration. In: Ecological Economics. 2018 ; Vol. 143. pp. 153-160
@article{96e4d42c4210420da1ff4c9c38af12d4,
title = "Ecosystem Services as Boundary Objects for Transdisciplinary Collaboration",
abstract = "The ecosystem services (ES) framework has potential to bring transdisciplinary teams together to achieve societal goals. Some label ES as “boundary objects” that help integrate diverse forms of knowledge across social groups and organizational scales. However, this classification masks complexities that arise from unique characteristics of ES types (i.e., provisioning, regulating, and cultural), which influence their ability to function as boundary objects. We argue that interpretive flexibility and material structures interact in distinct ways across ES types throughout a boundary object “life cycle.” Viewing a 2015 U.S. federal memorandum as a catalyst, we critically evaluate the evolution of ES and its role as a boundary object. We propose that provisioning and regulating services are transitioning out of boundary object status, moving into a more standardized state. However, we anticipate that cultural services may continue to behave as boundary objects if collaborators maintain them as such. This shift in the functionality of ES as boundary objects is an important consideration for future research that attempts to reach across social worlds and disciplinary perspectives. We urge collaborations to rely on the most relevant disciplinary knowledge, rather than allowing the ease of standardized solutions to dictate the boundary of a given problem.",
keywords = "Boundary objects, Collaboration, Cultural services, Provisioning services, Regulating services, Standards, Transdisciplinary research",
author = "Cara Steger and Shana Hirsch and Cody Evers and Benjamin Branoff and Maria Petrova and Max Nielsen-Pincus and Chloe Wardropper and {van Riper}, {Carena J.}",
year = "2018",
month = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.07.016",
volume = "143",
pages = "153--160",
journal = "Ecological Economics",
issn = "0921-8009",
publisher = "Elsevier",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Ecosystem Services as Boundary Objects for Transdisciplinary Collaboration

AU - Steger,Cara

AU - Hirsch,Shana

AU - Evers,Cody

AU - Branoff,Benjamin

AU - Petrova,Maria

AU - Nielsen-Pincus,Max

AU - Wardropper,Chloe

AU - van Riper,Carena J.

PY - 2018/1/1

Y1 - 2018/1/1

N2 - The ecosystem services (ES) framework has potential to bring transdisciplinary teams together to achieve societal goals. Some label ES as “boundary objects” that help integrate diverse forms of knowledge across social groups and organizational scales. However, this classification masks complexities that arise from unique characteristics of ES types (i.e., provisioning, regulating, and cultural), which influence their ability to function as boundary objects. We argue that interpretive flexibility and material structures interact in distinct ways across ES types throughout a boundary object “life cycle.” Viewing a 2015 U.S. federal memorandum as a catalyst, we critically evaluate the evolution of ES and its role as a boundary object. We propose that provisioning and regulating services are transitioning out of boundary object status, moving into a more standardized state. However, we anticipate that cultural services may continue to behave as boundary objects if collaborators maintain them as such. This shift in the functionality of ES as boundary objects is an important consideration for future research that attempts to reach across social worlds and disciplinary perspectives. We urge collaborations to rely on the most relevant disciplinary knowledge, rather than allowing the ease of standardized solutions to dictate the boundary of a given problem.

AB - The ecosystem services (ES) framework has potential to bring transdisciplinary teams together to achieve societal goals. Some label ES as “boundary objects” that help integrate diverse forms of knowledge across social groups and organizational scales. However, this classification masks complexities that arise from unique characteristics of ES types (i.e., provisioning, regulating, and cultural), which influence their ability to function as boundary objects. We argue that interpretive flexibility and material structures interact in distinct ways across ES types throughout a boundary object “life cycle.” Viewing a 2015 U.S. federal memorandum as a catalyst, we critically evaluate the evolution of ES and its role as a boundary object. We propose that provisioning and regulating services are transitioning out of boundary object status, moving into a more standardized state. However, we anticipate that cultural services may continue to behave as boundary objects if collaborators maintain them as such. This shift in the functionality of ES as boundary objects is an important consideration for future research that attempts to reach across social worlds and disciplinary perspectives. We urge collaborations to rely on the most relevant disciplinary knowledge, rather than allowing the ease of standardized solutions to dictate the boundary of a given problem.

KW - Boundary objects

KW - Collaboration

KW - Cultural services

KW - Provisioning services

KW - Regulating services

KW - Standards

KW - Transdisciplinary research

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85024860047&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85024860047&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.07.016

DO - 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.07.016

M3 - Article

VL - 143

SP - 153

EP - 160

JO - Ecological Economics

T2 - Ecological Economics

JF - Ecological Economics

SN - 0921-8009

ER -