Fire in the forest
Document Type: Conference Proceedings
Author(s): James M. Saveland
Editor(s): Lane G. Eskew
Publication Year: 1995

Cataloging Information

  • disturbance
  • management
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: December 13, 2016
FRAMES Record Number: 21629


From ancient philosophies to present day science, the ubiquity of change and the process of transformation are core concepts. The primary focus of a recent white paper on disturbance ecology is summed up by the Greek philosopher Heraclitus who stated, "Nothing is permanent but change." Disturbance processes, such as fire, provide a window into the emerging world of nonequilibrium theory. In contrast to a steady state view of the world, non- equilibrium theory asserts that biological communities are always recovering from the last disturbance. Disturbance is somewhat of a misnomer, connoting disruption of an equilibrium. Disturbance is about death and rebirth, the continuous process of renewal. Incorporating the process of renewal and transformation is the key to creating healthy forests and effective organizations. The process of continuous renewal in organizations is embodied in the concept of learning organizations. Building shared vision is one of the cornerstones of a learning organization and is the first step to incorporating disturbance ecology in land management practices.

Online Link(s):
Link to this document (450 KB; pdf)
Saveland, Jim. 1995. Fire in the forest. Pages 14-19. In: Eskew, Lane G. (editor). Forest health through silviculture. Proceedings of the 1995 National Silviculture Workshop; 1995 May 8-11; Mescalero, New Mexico. General Technical Report RM-GTR-267. Fort Collins, CO: USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station.