A lot of work on resilience has focused on the capacity to absorb shocks and still maintain function. But, there is also another aspect of resilience that concerns the capacity for renewal, re-organization and development, which has been less in focus but is essential for the sustainability discourse.
In a resilient social-ecological system, disturbance has the potential to create opportunity for doing new things, for innovation and for development. In vulnerable system even small disturbances may cause dramatic social consequences.
The resilience perspective shifts policies from those that aspire to control change in systems assumed to be stable, to managing the capacity of social-ecological systems to cope with, adapt to, and shape change.
Source: Resilience, the emergence of a perspective for social-ecological systems analyses, Carl Folke, 2006.