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Kimberly R. Hall

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Ecologists who specialize in translational ecology (TE) seek to link ecological knowledge to decision making by integrating ecological science with the full complement of social dimensions that underlie today's complex environmental issues. TE is motivated by a search for outcomes that directly serve the needs of natural resource managers and decision makers. This objective distinguishes it from both basic and applied ecological research and, as a practice, it deliberately extends research beyond theory or opportunistic applications. TE is uniquely positioned to address complex issues through interdisciplinary team approaches and integrated scientist–practitioner partnerships. The creativity and context‐specific...
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As global temperatures continue to rise, the frequency and severity of droughts in North America are expected to increase, leading to a wide range of social and ecological impacts. Identifying these impacts and the consequences for ecosystems and human communities are essential for effective drought management. Equally important is to improve the capacity of nature and people to prepare for and cope with drought by identifying management strategies that benefit both. An interdisciplinary working group within the Science for Nature and People Partnership (SNAPP) was established by the U.S. Geological Survey, The Wildlife Conservation Society, and The Nature Conservancy to synthesize our current understanding of...
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Water laws and drought plans are used to prioritize and allocate scarce water resources. Both have historically been human-centric, failing to account for non-human water needs. In this paper, we examine the development of instream flow legislation and the evolution of drought planning to highlight the growing concern for the non-human impacts of water scarcity. Utilizing a new framework for ecological drought, we analyzed five watershed-scale drought plans in southwestern Montana, USA to understand if, and how, the ecological impacts of drought are currently being assessed. We found that while these plans do account for some ecological impacts, it is primarily through the narrow lens of impacts to fish as measured...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Resources
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Translational ecology (TE) prioritizes the understanding of social systems and decision contexts in order to address complex natural resource management issues. Although many practitioners in applied fields employ translational tactics, the body of literature addressing such approaches is limited. We present several case studies illustrating the principles of TE and the diversity of its applications. We anticipate that these examples will help others develop scientific products that decision makers can use “off the shelf” when solving critical ecological and social challenges. Our collective experience suggests that research of such immediate utility is rare. Long‐term commitment to working directly with partners...
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