Spatial information on ecosystem services for improved landscape decision making

Authors and Affiliations: 

Louise Willemen
Faculty of Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC), University of Twente, the Netherlands

Corresponding author: 
Louise Willemen

Landscapes are shaped and changed by continuous interactions between natural and human processes Ecosystem services, the benefits of nature to humans, are therefore a clear entry point integrated landscape management targeting human well-being and environmental improvements. Both the science and awareness of human dependence on nature are currently at unprecedented heights, which drives the concept of ecosystem services being included in a growing number of decision making strategies. Robust, transparent, and stakeholder-relevant maps of ecosystem services are crucial for informed decision making and planning. Spatial information, including maps, can play different roles throughout a decision making process; to inform, facilitate discussion, explore, monitor, and evaluate. Experience shows that science-science and science-practice collaborations are needed to identify and synthesize needs and aligning spatial information on ecosystem services in order to support decision making processes. The development, alignment, and interpretation of spatial information not only requires data and tools, but also strong institutional competencies.
During this presentation will I provide an overview and examples of the role(s) of spatial information on ecosystem services in different decision making contexts, the current challenges, and way(s) forward.


Willemen, L., R. Kozar, A. Desalegn, and L. Buck. 2014. Spatial Planning and Monitoring of Landscape Interventions: Maps to link People with their Landscapes. A Users' Guide. , Washington DC, USA. Freely available online

Oral or poster: 
Oral presentation
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