Our first session was an exciting kickoff for the day! We had a full room gathered to explore SES dynamics in response to global change. The session featured the broad topic and the different ways that people are addressing the session topic. We began the session with two conceptual approaches to addressing SES in mountains. Sandra Lavorel introduced the TARA (Transformative Adaptation Research Alliance) network, that addresses transformation, adaptation services and rules/values/knowledge. Andreas Muhar then presented a framework for bringing values into existing SES frameworks. Sybyl Brunner and Anne Nolin presented their innovative approaches to participatory modeling of mountain SES and showed the state-of-the-art in modeling SES in conjunction with stakeholders enngagement and the way in which to assess future trajectories of change in mountain SES. Gurgiser and Klein emphasized the value of local observations in dialogue with scientific observations as way to advance understanding of adaptation and resilience of SES under global change. Johansson emphasized small-scale farmer vulnerability and adaptation to climate risks in East Africa. The session was very dynamic, in covering mountain systems from around the world and demonstrating the breadth of tools and approaches required to address mountain SES issues under global change.