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K-State Today

March 28, 2024

Nancy Grimm to present Division of Biology Seminar

Submitted by Division of Biology

Nancy Grimm, Regents professor and Virginia M. Ullman professor of ecology in the School of Life Sciences at Arizona State University, will present "Envisioning Positive Futures and Nature-Based Solutions for the Anthropocene" as part of the Division of Biology Seminar Series at 3 p.m. Monday, April 1, in Room 181 of Hale Library.

The Anthropocene, an age where humans have become the main force shaping the environment, is characterized by rapid change, compounded problems, and increasing complexity and uncertainty. For cities, extreme events driven by climate change pose particular challenges, including threats to lives and livelihoods, compounded infrastructure failures, and unequal distribution of risk due to past unjust practices. Strengthening the capacity of these social-ecological-technological systems to maintain their essential structure and function when faced with such events — i.e., resilience — is of paramount importance. Yet solutions have been based on prevailing views that the world is complicated, not complex; that events are predictable, not uncertain; and that people are apart from nature rather than part of nature.

In this talk, Grimm will explore examples of nature-based solutions, asking if these strategies can build resilience to extreme events in cities. Co-produced visions for present and future urban configurations from neighborhood to regional scales will illustrate the potential for reducing risk from extreme heat and flooding in urbanized central Arizona.

If you would like to visit with Grimm, contact Walter Dodds at wkdodds@k-state.edu. This lecture is the keynote presentation for the Division of Biology's 49th annual Graduate Student Research Forum. Sponsored by the Division of Biology and Professor Ton Damman Distinguished Lectureship in Ecology.