Interim Director

+46 73 460 70 68

Stockholm Resilience Centre,Stockholm University, Sweden


Albert Norströms research has focused on understanding and managing the resilience of coral reefs, and has included laboratory experiments, extensive field sampling and theoretical/synthetic work. It has led to new understanding on variables influencing recruitment and dispersal of corals, has shown how artisanal fishing can increase the vulnerability of coral reefs to macroalgal regime shifts, has given innovative insights into the complex dynamics of coral reef regime shifts and provided a suite of novel empirical indicators of reef resilience.

Current projects

1. Assessing and predicting regional coral reef resilience in the Hawaiian archipelago.

This project will, for the first time, quantitatively assess the regional resilience of a marine ecosystem, the Hawaiian archipelago, across distinct gradients of human impact. The analyses will be generated from one of the most comprehensive and extensive coral reef datasets available and will provide novel insights into the multi-scale dynamics of reef resilience and regime shifts. It will also produce dynamic models that will help understand the future impacts of climate change and direct human impacts on these critical marine ecosystems. The project builds on existing long-term collaborations between research partners with deep and diverse experience in developing theory, tools and empirical studies of coral reef resilience and dynamics. A long-term objective of this project, which extends beyond this application, is to use our findings as a blueprint for resilience assessments across different marine ecosystems. This will be ensured through the integration of the project to several of the most prominent networks on resilience and marine ecosystem dynamics including The Resilience Alliance, the ICSU Program on Ecosystem Change and Society (PECS) and the Ocean Tipping Points program

2. SEEN. The broad scientific aim of this project is to explore the dynamics that contribute to the reliable production of ecosystem services in social-ecological systems (i.e. interdependent and linked complex systems of people and nature). We will assess the patterns of trade-offs and synergies among 6-12 key ecosystem services within local municipalities (kommuner) in the Norrström drainage basin and then identify the social, ecological and geographic drivers of ecosystem service change across the study region. We will generate novel policy-and-practice relevant knowledge on ecosystem service governance in the region, and establish how historical and current governance arrangements affect the provision and deterioration of ecosystem services as well as access to these services in practice. Finally, we will prepare a regional Resilience Assessment of ecosystem services across the Norrström region through participatory engagement with relevant stakeholders - e.g. through the Stockholm metropolitan region strategic spatial planning process. This will ensure the results of the project are connected to an appropriate decision making context and facilitate the operationalization of the ecosystem service concept in the region.

3. REPICORE. REPICORE combines social and natural sciences for an integrated assessment to achieve a more holistic understanding of coupled social-ecological systems. Marine resource use and coastal livelihoods are examined acros three Melanesian countries in conjunction with field assessments of reef fish and benthic communities. This is combined with meta-analyses of reef fish community and associated socio-economic data and an assessment of marine governance structures in the region. The overall aim is an improved understanding of social-ecological feedbacks that erode or strengthen resilience. The project brings together leading international experts on social-ecological resilience assessment, and links up with institutions in the Pacific Islands. The project aims to link outcomes to regional decision makers via science-to-policy workshops and policy briefs.

Albert is Executive Director for the Programme on Ecoystem Change and Society (PECS), which has its International Programme Office hosted by the Stockholm Resilience Centre.

    Printable version

    2019-01-24 Albert Norström

    PECS - Programme on Ecosystem Change and Society

    Stockholm Resilience Centre

    Stockholm University
    SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
    Visiting address: Kräftriket 2

    +46 734 60 70 68


    The Programme on Ecosystem Change and Society (PECS), is a core project of Future Earth. It aims to integrate research on the stewardship of social–ecological system and the relationships among natural capital, human wellbeing, livelihoods, inequality and poverty.