Finding a balance amongst Ecosystem Services

Archie Crofton
Monday, 15th December 2014
Finding a balance amongst Ecosystem Services

An attempt to maximize the provision of a single service leads to suboptimal results if the increase of one service happens directly or indirectly at the cost of another service. Due to the multi-functionality of landscapes, decision makers often experience such trade-offs in natural resources management from unexpected and undesirable consequences of their decisions. A key challenge that decision makers face is to consider multiple ecosystem services and their potential consequences rather than focusing only on a few services and ignoring other influences. Thus, trade-offs between ecosystem services have to be addressed in decision making process. 

In order to address emerging interests and importance in trade-offs between ecosystem services across the various ecosystem services research communities, Heera Lee and Sven Lautenbach of the University of Bonn (within WP2 meta analysis) conducted a quantitative review of relationships between ecosystem services. In their work, they studied pairwise combinations of ecosystem services and presented the empirical patterns of relationships between them based on 60 case studies with 389 observations of ecosystem services pairs.


The results of this study will be presented during the session of “Ecosystem Services Within System Frameworks” at the ACES (A Community of Ecosystem Services) 2014 conference held in Washington D.C. December 8-12, 2014.


Heera Lee, University of Bonn,