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Bridging disciplinary gaps in studies of human-environment relations : A modelling framework

Title data

Hauhs, Michael ; Trancón y Widemann, Baltasar ; Klute, Georg:
Bridging disciplinary gaps in studies of human-environment relations : A modelling framework.
In: Modern Africa : Politics, History and Society. Vol. 5 (2017) Issue 2 . - pp. 35-76.
ISSN 2336-3274
DOI: https://doi.org/10.26806/modafr.v5i2.196

Abstract in another language

Modern human-environment relations are problematic and difficult to analyse in terms of nature and culture. Many authors suggest to abandon and overcome the nature-culture dichotomy in order to reorganise the academic division of labour, not onlyon environmental questions. Anthropologist Philippe Descola, forexample, surveyed the empirical evidence of patterns in humanenvironmental relations, suggesting four abstract cosmologies.Here, we propose a translation into a modelling terminology, which is compatible with the formalisation of programmes in computer science. The generalised framework contains four ideal types of modelling paradigms. It can be tested on various other classification schemes in a number of disciplines. In each application, thecategories of classification can be translated and then the patternsof the four logic types can be compared with the phenomenology ofeach case. Implications for interdisciplinary cooperation betweenscience and the humanities are sketched for some environmentalissues. This work demonstrates how tools from computer science can help, metaphorically, conceptually and technically, to organiseinterdisciplinary exchanges between science and the humanities. Thecategorical approach of applying the “divide and conquer” technique to different disciplinary models serves as a yardstick for comparing the implicit logic and modelling assumptions across examples whosephenomenological contents appear as unrelated. It gives useful hints how a dilemma of choosing between rigorous or relevant models can be resolved (e.g., in environmental science) and how the nature-culture dichotomy might be replaced by a general and flexible framework of a few model types.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Additional notes: BAYCEER144609
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Chair Ecological Modelling
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Chair Ecological Modelling > Chair Ecological Modelling - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Michael Hauhs
Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Research Centres
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 500 Science
Date Deposited: 08 Apr 2019 10:27
Last Modified: 08 Apr 2019 10:27
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/48311