Selecting methods for ecosystem service assessment: A decision tree approach
Paula A. Harrison,
David N. Barton,
Michiel van Eupen,
Diana Tuomasjukka and
Ecosystem Services, 2018, vol. 29, issue PC, 481-498
A range of methods are available for assessing ecosystem services. Methods differ in their aims; from mapping and modelling the supply and demand of ecosystem services to appraising their economic and non-economic importance through valuation techniques. Comprehensive guidance for the selection of appropriate ecosystem service assessment methods that address the requirements of different decision-making contexts is lacking. This paper tackles this gap using the experience from 27 case studies which applied different biophysical, socio-cultural and monetary valuation methods to operationalise the ecosystem service concept towards sustainable land, water and urban management. A survey of the reasons why the case study teams selected particular methods revealed that stakeholder-oriented reasons, such as stakeholder participation, inclusion of local knowledge and ease of communication, and decision-oriented reasons, such as the purpose of the case study and the ecosystem services at stake, were key considerations in selecting a method. Pragmatic reasons such as available data, resources and expertise were also important factors. This information was used to develop a set of linked decision trees, which aim to provide guidance to researchers and practitioners in choosing ecosystem service assessment methods that are suitable for their context.
Keywords: Guidance; Method; Tool; Decision trees; Biophysical; Monetary; Socio-cultural (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:ecoser:v:29:y:2018:i:pc:p:481-498
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