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SFS Annual Meeting

Abstract Details

5/24/2018  |   16:00 - 17:00   |  Grand Riverview Ballroom B

Keynote: Dr. Rebecca Lave
BRIDGING THE GAP: INTEGRATING CRITICAL SOCIAL AND PHYSICAL SCIENCE IN THE STUDY OF STREAMS Do we need to integrate physical and social science to understand what is happening at our field sites? I argue in this talk that the answer is unequivocally yes, and that there is already a strong and growing body of work that does so: critical physical geography. Individually or in teams, critical physical geographers are bridging the gap, combining insights from geomorphology, ecology, and biogeography with approaches from political ecology, science and technology studies, and environmental history. By way of illustration, I present the results of a study of stream mitigation banking in the US. Drawing on social science data from document analysis and interviews and natural science data from geomorphic fieldwork, I argue that while the fluvial landscape bears a surprisingly clear signature of both environmental policy and the development of ecosystem service markets in “stream credits,” that signature is different than we would expect based on the economic incentives built into stream mitigation markets.

Rebecca Lave (Primary Presenter), Indiana University,;
Rebecca Lave is an Associate Professor in Geography at Indiana University. She has published in journals ranging from Science to Social Studies of Science, and is the author of Fields and Streams (2012), a book about the political economy of stream restoration in the U.S. and the construction of environmental expertise. Her research, funded primarily by the National Science Foundation, combines social and physical science to address environmental markets, the Clean Water Act, and stream restoration. Lave is a co-founder of EDGI (the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative), an international network of academics and environmental professionals that advocates for evidence-based environmental policy and robust, democratic scientific data governance. She has won numerous teaching awards, including the Campus Catalyst Award for Excellence in Teaching Sustainability.