River Futures: An Integrative Scientific Approach to River Repair

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Across much of the industrialized world, rivers that were physically transformed and ecologically ruined to facilitate industrial and agricultural development are now the focus of restoration and rehabilitation efforts. River Futures discusses the emergence of this new era of river repair and documents a comprehensive biophysical framework for river science and management.

The book considers what can be done to maximize prospects for improving river health while maintaining or enhancing the provision of ecosystem services over the next fifty to one-hundred years. It provides a holistic overview of considerations that underpin the use of science in river management, emphasizing cross-disciplinary understanding that builds on a landscape template.


The book

  • frames the development of integrative river science and its application to river rehabilitation programs
  • develops a coherent set of guiding principles with which to approach integrative river science
  • considers the application of cross-disciplinary thinking in river rehabilitation experiences from around the world
  • examines the crossover between science and management, outlining issues that must be addressed to promote healthier river futures

Case studies explore practical applications in different parts of the world, highlighting approaches to the use of integrative river science, measures of success, and steps that could be taken to improve performance in future efforts.

River Futures offers a positive, practical, and constructive focus that directly addresses the major challenge of a new era of river conservation and rehabilitation—that of bringing together the diverse and typically discipline-bound sets of knowledge and practices that are involved in repairing rivers. It is a valuable resource for anyone involved in river restoration and management, including restorationists, scientists, managers, and policymakers, as well as undergraduate and graduate students.

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Editorial Reviews

The Chronicle Review

Mentioned in Review Pages.
Journal of Environmental Quality

"River Futures is an unequivocally positive book with a positive message, looking forward and trying to provide solutions."

— P. M. Haygarth

Book News Inc.

"Focusing on the future rather than the past, an eco-system perspective, and integrating biological and social interests are among the strategies that these earth and environmental scientists apply to restoring rivers that have been damaged by human activity. Most of the contributors, and most of the case studies, are from Australia and New Zealand, but Europe, Japan, South Africa, and Colorado are also represented."

Book Reviews

"In River Futures, Brierley and Fryirs, along with an international team of authors, provide a vision of what river rehabilitation is and how it should be managed."

-- Karen Prestegaard, University of Maryland, Department of Geology, College Park, MD

Abstracts of Public Administration

"Subjects covered in this collection include: the importance of having a future focus for river rehabilitation, a shift in the science and management of river systems, application of carefully targeted measures to monitor the conditions of river systems, and dedication to the concept of healthier river futures."
Journal of Environmental Quality - P. M. Haygarth

"River Futures is an unequivocally positive book with a positive message, looking forward and trying to provide solutions."
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Gary Brierley is a professor in the School of Geography, Geology, and Environmental Science at the University of Auckland in New Zealand.


Kirstie Fryirs is a lecturer in the Department of Physical Geography at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia.

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Table of Contents

Pt. I The Emerging Process of River Repair 1

Ch. 1 Moves Toward an Era of River Repair Gary J. Brierley Brierley, Gary J. Kirstie A. Fryirs Fryirs, Kirstie A. 3

Ch. 2 Vision Generation: What Do We Seek to Achieve in River Rehabilitation? Darren Ryder Ryder, Darren Gary J. Brierley Brierley, Gary J. Richard Hobbs Hobbs, Richard Garreth Kyle Kyle, Garreth Michelle Leishman Leishman, Michelle 16

Ch. 3 Turbulence and Train Wrecks: Using Knowledge Strategies to the Enhance Application of Integrative River Science to Effective River Management Andrew Boulton Boulton, Andrew Herve Piegay Piegay, Herve Mark D. Sanders Sanders, Mark D. 28

Pt. II An Integrative Scientific Perspective to Guide the Process of River Repair 41

Ch. 4 The Spatial Organization of River Systems Carola Cullum Cullum, Carola Gary J. Brierley Brierley, Gary J. Martin Thoms Thoms, Martin 43

Ch. 5 Working with Change: The Importance of Evolutionary Perspectives in Framing the Trajectory of River Adjustment Gary J. Brierley Brierley, Gary J. Kirstie A. Fryirs Fryirs, Kirstie A. Andrew Boulton Boulton, Andrew Carola Cullum Cullum, Carola 65

Ch. 6 Ecological Function in Rivers: Insights from Crossdisciplinary Science Sarah Mika Mika, Sarah Andrew Boulton Boulton, Andrew Darren Ryder Ryder, Darren Daniel Keating Keating, Daniel 85

Ch. 7 Principles of River Condition Assessment Kirstie A. Fryirs Fryirs, Kirstie A. Angela Arthington Arthington, Angela James Grove Grove, James 100

Ch. 8 Social and Biophysical Connectivity of River Systems Mick Hillman Hillman, Mick Gary J. Brierley Brierley, Gary J. Kirstie A. Fryirs Fryirs, Kirstie A. 125

Pt. III International Rerspectives on the Process of RiverRepair 147

Ch. 9 The Australian River Management Experience Kirstie A. Fryirs Fryirs, Kirstie A. Bruce Chessman Chessman, Bruce Mick Hillman Hillman, Mick David Outhet Outhet, David Alexandra Spink Spink, Alexandra 149

Ch. 10 River Management in the United States Ellen Wohl Wohl, Ellen Margaret Palmer Palmer, Margaret G. Mathias Kondolf Kondolf, G. Mathias 174

Ch. 11 Integrative River Science and Rehabilitation: European Experiences Herve Piegay Piegay, Herve Larissa A. Naylor Naylor, Larissa A. Gertrud Haidvogl Haidvogl, Gertrud Jochem Kail Kail, Jochem Laurent Schmitt Schmitt, Laurent Laurent Bourdin Bourdin, Laurent 201

Ch. 12 The Light and Dark of Sabo-Dammed Streams in Steepland Settings in Japan Tomomi Marutani Marutani, Tomomi Shun-ichi Kikuchi Kikuchi, Shun-ichi Seiji Yanai Yanai, Seiji Kaori Kochi Kochi, Kaori 220

Ch. 13 Application of Integrative Science in the Management of South African Rivers Kate M. Rowntree Rowntree, Kate M. Leanne du Preez Preez, Leanne du 237

Pt. IV Managing the Process of River Repair 255

Ch. 14 Restoring Uncertainty: Translating Science into Management Practice Mick Hillman Hillman, Mick Gary J. Brierley Brierley, Gary J. 257

Ch. 15 River Futures Gary J. Brierley Brierley, Gary J. Kirstie A. Fryirs Fryirs, Kirstie A. Mick Hillman Hillman, Mick 273

Index 297

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