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Nonlinear landscape and cultural response to sea-level rise

Barnett, RL; Charman, DJ; Johns, C; Ward, SL; Bevan, A; Bradley, SL; Camidge, K; ... Stevens, T; + view all (2020) Nonlinear landscape and cultural response to sea-level rise. Science Advances , 6 (45) , Article eabb6376. 10.1126/sciadv.abb6376. Green open access

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Abstract

Rising sea levels have been associated with human migration and behavioral shifts throughout prehistory, often with an emphasis on landscape submergence and consequent societal collapse. However, the assumption that future sea-level rise will drive similar adaptive responses is overly simplistic. While the change from land to sea represents a dramatic and permanent shift for preexisting human populations, the process of change is driven by a complex set of physical and cultural processes with long transitional phases of landscape and socioeconomic change. Here, we use reconstructions of prehistoric sea-level rise, paleogeographies, terrestrial landscape change, and human population dynamics to show how the gradual inundation of an island archipelago resulted in decidedly nonlinear landscape and cultural responses to rising sea levels. Interpretation of past and future responses to sea-level change requires a better understanding of local physical and societal contexts to assess plausible human response patterns in the future.

Type: Article
Title: Nonlinear landscape and cultural response to sea-level rise
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abb6376
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.abb6376
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2020 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works. Distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 (CC BY). This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Institute of Archaeology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Institute of Archaeology > Institute of Archaeology Gordon Square
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10115292
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