Resilience: From Systems Theory to Social Sciences

The study, which is the introductory article of the “Resilience” thematic issue of Replika, provides an overview of the emergence and current use and interpretation of the notion of resilience in various disciplines and discourses. The author compares the different definitions and typologies used by resilience theorists, and presents these in a combined framework. The difference between resilience and resistance is illustrated by several examples, with special regard to the fact that “resilience” has no equivalent in Hungarian language. Special emphasis is laid on the importance of the temporal dimension: on the one hand slow recovering from stresses and shocks may question the possibility or desirability of returning to the original state of an entity, and on the other hand, the resilient components of the entity may recover in a significantly differing pace and thus their resultant will determine the degree of resilience in the whole process. Th e author synthesizes the elements of the assessment framework developed by Longstaff et al.; analyzes the often contradictory use of resilience in various application areas, in particular in the field of securitization, and argues for the value-neutral nature of the notion. The study concludes by providing a brief overview of the small number of Hungarian scientific and practical application areas of the notion of resilience, and attempts to locate the articles of the thematic issue on the ever expanding map of resilience theory.

Released: Replika 94, 7–23.
Replika block: