Gordon is an internationally recognised scientist in sustainability of water, food, and the biosphere. She conducts innovative research that combines work with small scale farmers in Africa, global models of land-use and rainfall interactions, and culinary innovators.
She has previously served as deputy director, deputy science director and research theme leader at the Stockholm Resilience Centre.
As a researcher, Gordon is particularly interested in how intentional and unintentional actions in one place can influence systemic change elsewhere. In research she integrates insights from resilience thinking, land use change, food systems, hydrology, and social-ecological systems.
Her work also includes extensive experience in leading international research projects. One example is her research on Moisture recycling, analysing how land use change influence rainfall patterns and hydrology elsewhere.
She has also led, and still contributes to several research projects in the Sahel region including research on ecosystem services, livelihoods and social-ecological resilience assessments. This research has been funded by grants from SIDA, the Swedish Research Council, CGIAR and the French National Research Agency (ANR).
She currently co-leads the food theme in the Wallenberg Foundation funded Stanford collaboration programmes on ‘Natural capital, resilience and biosphere stewardship’ and ‘Fundamental research in biosphere-based sustainability science’. She is one of the authors of the forthcoming EAT-Lancet Commission, and on its Executive Editorial Team.
She is on the board of directors of the EAT Foundation, a science-based global platform for food system transformation. One of her key interests in terms of food system change is related to aspirational change, especially in the Nordic region.
Gordon has published more than 50 research articles, including articles in PNAS and Trends in Ecology and the Environment. She also co-authored the book Water Resilience for Human Prosperity (2014) and has contributed to several other book chapters.
Gordon has a PhD in Natural Resources Management from Department of Systems Ecology at Stockholm University, and a Post Doc at the International Water Management Institute in Sri Lanka.
She is a popular speaker at Swedish and International events, especially around food system change, water resources management and more general aspects of sustainable development.
Research news | 2020-03-19
Four-year programme receives SEK 64 million from the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research (Mistra)
Research news | 2020-02-09
A new study harmonizes the water planetary boundary with local boundaries for the La Cienega wetlands in Colombia
Research news | 2020-02-03
Limited data and statistics on food availability in Ghana and Burkina Faso still produced insights that could boost sustainable resource management
Research news | 2019-12-17
Uncovering society’s hidden footprint on the water cycle and its implications for future water security
2020 - Journal / article
Achieving sustainable development goals requires targeting and monitoring sustainable solutions tailored to different social and ecological contexts. A social-ecological systems (SESs) framework was developed to help diagnose problems, identify complex interactions, and solutions tailored to each SES. Here we develop a data-driven method for upscaling the SES framework and apply it to a context where data is scarce, but also ...
2020 - Journal / article
We welcome the interest in our work on transnational corporations (TNCs) and biosphere stewardship. TNCs have rarely been linked to ecosystem dynamics, and even less so considered suitable partners for knowledge co-production in sustainability research. How TNCs shape the intertwined nature of people and planet therefore represents a timely and critical topic and the Correspondence articles by Schneider et al. and Etzion offer...
2019 - Journal / article
Water security is key to planetary resilience for human society to flourish in the face of global change. Atmospheric moisture recycling – the process of water evaporating from land, flowing through the atmosphere, and falling out again as precipitation over land – is the invisible mechanism by which water influences resilience, that is the capacity to persist, adapt, and transform. Through land-use change, mainly by agricultu...
2019 - Journal / article
Globally, food systems face multifaceted sustainability challenges and the need for food system transformation is increasingly acknowledged. However, there is still a lack of knowledge on the pathways for transformation and how they will play out in diverse regional social-ecological contexts. We explored transformation towards more sustainable and resilient food systems in a specific regional context – the Stockholm city-regi...