Postdoctoral researcher

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Profile summary

  • Social-ecological interactions
  • Agent-based modeling
  • Participatory modeling
  • Resilience principles
  • Ecosystem services
  • Freshwater management
  • Rangeland management

Romina Martin simulates social-ecological interactions in order to support improvements in regional freshwater management

Martin is passionate about simulation model development and analysis to better understand complex phenomena. This activity, she feels, becomes most meaningful for the purpose of untangling ecological dynamics, which are intertwined with human ingenuity to celebrate a more or less sustainable lifestyle. Her applied methods range from agent-based, system dynamics modeling to diverse participatory approaches.

Since 2013, she has worked with centre associate professor Maja Schlüter, and focuses on the application of resilience principles to analyse case studies and improve their management. This primarily involves the stepwise formalisation of social-ecological interactions and specification of characteristic system patterns, such as regime shifts and bundles of ecosystem services, on multiple levels to investigate them through computational models.

Martin is interested in a variety of modelling tools which enable investigating the dynamics of ecosystems that interlink with human well-being. Towards this aim, Martin develops bioeconomic, agent-based, and system dynamics models and simulates decision-making in the human-environmental interface. Further, she engages in multiple participatory stakeholder activities in order to link generic models closer to empirical grounds.

Martin graduated in computer science and biology and holds a PhD in biology from the University in Cologne, Germany, where she was supervised by Prof. Michael Bonkowski and Dr. Anja Linstädter. The topic of her PhD was pastoral livelihood security and rangeland management in drylands using ecological-economic modelling approaches. The project was conducted in close collaboration with the Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) in Leipzig in the Department of Ecological Modelling, where most of the work was carried out and supervised by Prof. Karin Frank and Dr. Birgit Müller.

Beyond simulating complex features from social-ecological systems, Martin is interested in disentangling and translating these complexities for transdisciplinary activities or environmental education purposes. Along with her PhD, Martin developed a board game on pastoral rangeland management (“NomadSed”) and was involved in analysing and improving an online game on sustainable land management (“LandYous”).

Awards and achievements:

  • Best Student Paper Prize: 2nd place for the paper “Which household tolerates droughts? - Strategies to secure pastoral livelihoods”, 2012 at the International Congress on Environmental Modelling and Software (iEMSs)

Publications by Martin, Romina