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"Ecology and the Environment"

Plutynski, A (2008) "Ecology and the Environment". Oxford Handbook in Philosophy of Biology.

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Abstract

Ecology is the study of the interactions of organisms and their environments. The methods of ecology fall roughly into three categories: descriptive surveys of patterns of species and resource distribution and abundance, theoretical modeling, and experimental manipulations. Ecological systems are “open” systems, and patterns and processes are products of a huge number of interacting forces. Ecology and the environmental sciences have made enormous advances since the mid-twentieth century in the understanding of ecological systems, as well as in the human impact on the environment. Theory in ecology usually centers on the development of models. Environmental outcomes are uncertain and when making decisions under uncertainty, there are a variety of options available. One option is to carry out a cost benefit analysis based upon expected utilities and other is to adopt the precautionary principle. Uncertainty and under determination of theory by evidence is a fact of life in science.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Plutynski, Aaplutyns@wustl.edu
Keywords: ecology, environment, interaction, system, model, theory, balance of nature
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology > Ecology/Conservation
General Issues > Science and Policy
General Issues > Theory/Observation
Depositing User: A Plutynski
Date Deposited: 20 Nov 2018 01:43
Last Modified: 20 Nov 2018 01:43
Item ID: 15351
Journal or Publication Title: Oxford Handbook in Philosophy of Biology
Publisher: OUP
Official URL: http://www.oxfordhandbooks.com/view/10.1093/oxford...
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195182057.003.0022
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology > Ecology/Conservation
General Issues > Science and Policy
General Issues > Theory/Observation
Date: 2008
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/15351

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