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A constructivist approach toward a general definition of biodiversity


Meinard, Yves; Coq, Sylvain; Schmid, Bernhard (2014). A constructivist approach toward a general definition of biodiversity. Ethics, Policy & Environment, 17(1):88-104.

Abstract

Biodiversity sciences witness a double dynamic. Whereas the need for interdisciplinary approaches is increasingly appreciated, most disciplinary studies are still confined to developing operational, discipline-specific indices. We show that a reassessment of the general notion of biodiversity is needed to clarify this situation. We advocate a new approach, according to which the main usefulness of this notion is not to capture quantitatively biological objects or processes, but to organize meaningful and coherent interdisciplinary interactions by constructively criticizing disciplinary studies. We apply this approach to ecological-economic models, in the hope of launching more fruitful critical dialogs between economists and biologists.

Biodiversity sciences witness a double dynamic. Whereas the need for interdisciplinary approaches is increasingly appreciated, most disciplinary studies are still confined to developing operational, discipline-specific indices. We show that a reassessment of the general notion of biodiversity is needed to clarify this situation. We advocate a new approach, according to which the main usefulness of this notion is not to capture quantitatively biological objects or processes, but to organize meaningful and coherent interdisciplinary interactions by constructively criticizing disciplinary studies. We apply this approach to ecological-economic models, in the hope of launching more fruitful critical dialogs between economists and biologists.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
590 Animals (Zoology)
Uncontrolled Keywords:surrogates, politics and policy, philosophy, economics, ecosystem management
Language:English
Date:2014
Deposited On:20 May 2014 14:45
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 17:52
Publisher:Routledge
ISSN:2155-0085
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/21550085.2014.885490
Permanent URL: https://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-95800

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