Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 498211
Title Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats : A SWOT analysis of the ecosystem services framework
Author(s) Bull, J.W.; Jobstvogt, N.; Böhnke-Henrichs, A.; Mascarenhas, A.; Sitas, N.; Baulcomb, C.; Lambini, C.K.; Rawlins, M.; Baral, H.; Zähringer, J.; Carter-Silk, E.; Balzan, M.V.; Kenter, J.O.; Häyhä, T.; Petz, K.; Koss, R.
Source Ecosystem Services 17 (2016). - ISSN 2212-0416 - p. 99 - 111.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecoser.2015.11.012
Department(s) Environmental Systems Analysis Group
WOT Natuur & Milieu
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2016
Keyword(s) Environmental policy - Expert survey - Young Ecosystem Services Specialists
Abstract

The ecosystem services concept (ES) is becoming a cornerstone of contemporary sustainability thought. Challenges with this concept and its applications are well documented, but have not yet been systematically assessed alongside strengths and external factors that influence uptake. Such an assessment could form the basis for improving ES thinking, further embedding it into environmental decisions and management.The Young Ecosystem Services Specialists (YESS) completed a Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats (SWOT) analysis of ES through YESS member surveys. Strengths include the approach being interdisciplinary, and a useful communication tool. Weaknesses include an incomplete scientific basis, frameworks being inconsistently applied, and accounting for nature's intrinsic value. Opportunities include alignment with existing policies and established methodologies, and increasing environmental awareness. Threats include resistance to change, and difficulty with interdisciplinary collaboration. Consideration of SWOT themes suggested five strategic areas for developing and implementing ES.The ES concept could improve decision-making related to natural resource use, and interpretation of the complexities of human-nature interactions. It is contradictory - valued as a simple means of communicating the importance of conservation, whilst also considered an oversimplification characterised by ambiguous language. Nonetheless, given sufficient funding and political will, the ES framework could facilitate interdisciplinary research, ensuring decision-making that supports sustainable development.

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