Aarhus University Seal

Management of complex social-ecological systems is of paramount importance and societal relevance. There is an increasing understanding that these systems include multiple interconnected feedbacks and drivers, and that decision-making occurs within an environment of changing context.

SESS generates scientific outputs, which can feed directly to policy development, implementation and administrative structures, and has direct influence in solving key issues of societal concern.

The Social-Ecological Systems Simulation centre aims to facilitate systems understanding and decision-making. SESS focuses on the development of simulation as a tool to explore the implications of management decisions on the environmental, societal and economic aspects of managed systems. 

SESS strives to become a center of excellence, leading international scientific advances on theory and practice of simulation of social-ecological systems. 

We aim to understand the complexity of dynamic, adaptive systems, and to develop theoretical and methodological approaches to social-ecological systems simulation in support of goal-oriented systems management, by establishing an international reputation for scientific and technological excellence in applied social-ecological simulation modelling.

We work with complex software simulations, GIS, agricultural systems and weather data, and have ALMaSS species models for insects, bird and mammals, as well as people.

Our approach is ideal to address questions of integrating food, energy generation, and natural resources in circular sustainable economies, as:

  • How best to implement regulatory risk assessment for pesticides and other stressors to ensure sustainable food production?

  • How best to enhance ecosystem services (e.g. pollination)?

  • How to slow and reverse biodiversity declines?

  • How to use circular management of farming inputs and outputs in order to ensure sustainable production?

SESS shares developments on ALMaSS models, projects outputs and news, upcoming and ongoing events and courses, as well as SESS job adverts. Follow us to gain insights to our work and team as well as the projects and initiatives we engage in:

In 2020, Aarhus University established the Social-Ecological Systems Simulation centre, now based at the Department of Ecoscience in Aarhus C.

SESS has collaborations with European and national institutions (e.g. EFSA & the Danish Enrivonmental Protection Agency), as well as scientific establishments, agroindustry organisations and NGOs, throughout Europe. 

We collaborate with researchers from Europe through development of the ALMaSS model system.

Christopher John Topping

Full Professor
SESS Centre Leader

Sort by: Date | Author | Title