This is a brief description of studies that exemplify the methods and approaches that have been developed and used by Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) researchers in conducting integrated assessments. See the complete list of Integrated Assessment Briefs to find out more about ORNL's efforts in integrated assessment. Contact Mike Farrell ( for more information.

Aleut Indian Culture: Integration of Anthropological Study with Ecosystem Model

This diagram represents the carbon model for the Aleutian ecosystem. The values in each compartment represent metric tons (103) of carbon at steady state. The numbers on the arrows represent the flux of carbon (metric tons year -1) between compartments.

Is it feasible to produce the interdisciplinary models needed in integrated assessment?

An anthropological study of Aleut Indian culture was integrated with an ecosystem model to assess impacts on the marine versus upland ecosystems.

The study analyzed the relative sensitivity of the Aleut culture to the marine and terrestrial environments and found four orders of magnitude greater sensitivity to changes in the marine system. This dependence on the marine system is justified by the relative stability of the ocean ecosystem and its insensitivity to environmental changes.

Hett, J. M., and R. V. O'Neill. 1974. Systems analysis of the Aleut ecosystem. Arctic Anthropology XI:31-40.

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Integrated Assessment Briefs. 1995. ORNL/M-4227. Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN.