This unique addition to reference literature provides an introduction to the major concepts and contemporary issues that are essential for students of environmental science and environmental studies to know. With over 200 entries authored by world-class names like Anthony Brazel, John Day and Edward Keller, this text is divided into six sections: Environmental Science, Environments, Paradigms & Concepts, Processes & Dynamics, Scales & Techniques, and Environmental Issues.
This term refers to the view that a system can be understood by the operation of its ultimate component parts or sub-systems. It has come to be applied to the approach adopted in environmental sciences whereby increasingly detailed study and investigation leads to more sub-divisions of disciplines into increasingly specialized branches of research. Thus explanation may be sought at the cell level or successively at the molecular, atomic or sub-atomic level. A danger of such increasingly detailed investigation is the loss of the overall perspective which is why holism offers an alternative and holistic thinking has been encouraged by systems approaches. Whereas reductionism focuses on increasingly detailed levels of investigation the antonym is emergence whereby progression is from the detailed investigation of physics and ...