Utilising his background in theoretical physics, Steve’s research at the Stockholm Resilience Centre applies theoretical modelling tools, such as dynamical systems theory and network theory, to the study of social-ecological systems. Currently he holds a FORMAS grant to investigate interactions between the planetary boundaries, focusing initially on the feedbacks between biodiversity (biosphere integrity) and climate change.
Other research interests include extending economic poverty trap models to better take into account the complex cultural and biophysical settings in which poverty occurs and the diversity of alleviation strategies that are used to alleviate poverty. Previously, Steve modelled the social-ecological dynamics of Baltic Sea fisheries.
Steve holds a PhD in theoretical physics from the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia. Previous positions include: a postdoctoral position at the Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems in Dresden, Germany; and a guest affiliation as Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow at NORDITA, the Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics.
Awards and achievements:
Research news | 2015-08-26
How humans matter for ecological regime shifts
Research news | 2013-08-23
Better understanding of the coupling between human behavior and ecological dynamics key to predicting ecological regime shifts
2015 - Journal / article
High levels of cellular damage are associated with impairment of cellular function and cell death. Partitioning the damage into a fraction of cells in the population improves population fitness and survival. We have previously shown that protein aggregates, resulting from misfolded, damaged proteins, fuse with each other leading to damage partitioning during cell division. Here, using an analytical treatment of aggregate fus...
2015 - Journal / article
"Natural resource management is people management" is a cliché, but the effects of human behavior on the condition of natural resources, and vice versa, are often still not sufficiently acknowledged when modeling and managing natural resources. We constructed an empirically parameterized model of the boom and collapse of Baltic cod fisheries in the 1980s that explicitly took these two-way interactions between human action and...
2014 - Journal / article
Asymmetric segregation of damaged proteins at cell division generates a cell that retains damage and a clean cell that supports population survival. In cells that divide asymmetrically, such as Saccharomyces cerevisiae , segregation of damaged proteins is achieved by retention and active transport. We have previously shown that in the symmetrically dividing Schizosaccharomyces pombe there is a transition between symmetric ...
2013 - Journal / article
Ecological regime shifts are rarely purely ecological. Not only is the regime shift frequently triggered by human activity, but the responses of relevant actors to ecological dynamics are often crucial to the development and even existence of the regime shift. Here, we show that the dynamics of human behaviour in response to ecological changes can be crucial in determining the overall dynamics of the system. We find a social–e...