Forecasting resilience profiles of the run-up to regime shifts in nearly-one-dimensional systems

Matthew W. Adamson, Jonathan H.P. Dawes, Alan Hastings, Frank M. Hilker

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3 Citations (SciVal)
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The forecasting of sudden, irreversible shifts in natural systems is a challenge of great importance, whose realization could allow pre-emptive action to be taken to avoid or mitigate catastrophic transitions, or to help systems adapt to them. In recent years, there have been many advances in the development of such early warning signals. However, much of the current toolbox is based around the tracking of statistical trends and therefore does not aim to estimate the future time scale of transitions or resilience loss. Metric-based indicators are also difficult to implement when systems have inherent oscillations which can dominate the indicator statistics. To resolve these gaps in the toolbox, we use additional system properties to fit parsimonious models to dynamics in order to predict transitions. Here, we consider nearly-one-dimensional systems-higher dimensional systems whose dynamics can be accurately captured by one-dimensional discrete time maps. We show how the nearly one-dimensional dynamics can be used to produce model-based indicators for critical transitions which produce forecasts of the resilience and the time of transitions in the system. A particularly promising feature of this approach is that it allows us to construct early warning signals even for critical transitions of chaotic systems. We demonstrate this approach on two model systems: of phosphorous recycling in a shallow lake, and of an overcompensatory fish population.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
JournalJournal of the Royal Society, Interface
Issue number170
Early online date16 Sept 2020
Publication statusPublished - 30 Sept 2020


  • critical transition
  • data requirements
  • early-warning signal
  • global bifurcation
  • model-based indicator

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomedical Engineering


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