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Evaluating the role of ecosystem services in participatory land use planning: proposing a balanced score card


Abstract and Figures

The application of the ecosystem services (ES) concept in land use planning has great potential to enhance the awareness of planning actors on their interactions. At the same time it can contribute to improve the linkage between the role of land use patterns and the understanding of land system functioning and its contribution to human well-being. The concept should be developed in a way that can be applicable in socio-ecological systems where nature and society are capable of enhancing their roles mutually. The objective of this paper is to suggest a standardized scheme and generalizable criteria to assess how successful the application of the ES concept contributed to facilitate participatory planning. We consider three potential advantages and three critical aspects for how to improve the applicability and relevance of the ES concept in planning. Hereon based, we present a balanced score card tool for which we broke down to advantages and risks into concrete questions. We illustrate the application of this approach with two case studies, representatives of two major governance schemes in relation to land use planning. We demonstrate that the balanced score card approach helps to reveal potential imbalances regarding the consideration of different ES groups. It supports testing the potential of the ES concept to enhance or not interactions of local and regional actors. We conclude that the framework should be reconsidered after a set of case studies to be developed into a monitoring tool for supporting planning practices.
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2Evaluating the role of ecosystem services in participatory
3land use planning: proposing a balanced score card
4Christine Fu
¨rst Paul Opdam Luis Inostroza
5Sandra Luque
6Received: 29 April 2014 / Accepted: 9 June 2014
7ÓSpringer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014
8Abstract The application of the ecosystem services
9(ES) concept in land use planning has great potential to
10 enhance the awareness of planning actors on their
11 interactions. At the same time it can contribute to
12 improve the linkage between the role of land use
13 patterns and the understanding of land system func-
14 tioning and its contribution to human well-being. The
15 concept should be developed in a way that can be
16 applicable in socio-ecological systems where nature
17 and society are capable of enhancing their roles
18 mutually. The objective of this paper is to suggest a
19 standardized scheme and generalizable criteria to assess
20 how successful the application of the ES concept
21 contributed to facilitate participatory planning. We
22 consider three potential advantages and three critical
aspects for how to improve the applicability and
relevance of the ES concept in planning. Hereon based,
we present a balanced score card tool for which we
broke down to advantages and risks into concrete
questions. We illustrate the application of this approach
with two case studies, representatives of two major
governance schemes in relation to land use planning.
We demonstrate that the balanced score card approach
helps to reveal potential imbalances regarding the
consideration of different ES groups. It supports testing
the potential of the ES concept to enhance or not
interactions of local and regional actors. We conclude
that the framework should be reconsidered after a set of
case studies to be developed into a monitoring tool for
supporting planning practices.
A1 C. Fu
¨rst (&)
A2 Department of Ecology and Natural Resources
A3 Management, Center for Development Research,
A4 University of Bonn, Walter Flex Str. 3, 53113 Bonn,
A5 Germany
A6 e-mail:; cfuerst@uni-
A7 P. Opdam
A8 Spatial Planning Group, Alterra-Wageningen UR Team
A9 Nature and Society, Wageningen University, PO Box 47,
A10 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands
A11 L. Inostroza
A12 Institute of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing,
A13 Technische Universita
¨t Dresden, 01062 Dresden,
A14 L. Inostroza
A15 Centre for Latin American Studies, University of
A16 Economics, W. Churchilla Sq. 4, 130 67 Prague 3,
A17 Czech Republic
A18 S. Luque
A19 EMGR, National Research Institute of Science and
A20 Technology for Environment and Agriculture (IRSTEA),
A21 Grenoble, France
A22 S. Luque
A23 Department of Geography and Sustainable Development,
A24 University of St Andrews, St. Andrews, Scotland, UK
Landscape Ecol
DOI 10.1007/s10980-014-0052-9
Journal : Medium 10980 Dispatch : 26-6-2014 Pages : 12
Article No. : 52 hLE hTYPESET
MS Code : LAND-D-14-00188 hCP hDISK
38 Keywords Ecosystem services Participatory land
39 use planning Balanced score card Actors
40 Ecosystem services groups Efficiency of land use
41 planning processes Quality of land use plans
42 Introduction
43 There is a growing consensus that in democratic
44 societies a greater involvement of local citizens,
45 interest groups and entrepreneurs is indispensable to
46 achieve broad acceptance of landscape change and to
47 successfully translate plans into actions (Opdam et al.
48 2013). Solving multi-scale environment-society
49 dilemmas needs innovative governance approaches
50 that foster collaboration and mutual learning, contrib-
51 ute to building trust and support towards the develop-
52 ment of social networks of researchers, communities
53 and policy makers (Armitage et al. 2009). Case studies
54 and lessons learnt from practice provide evidence that
55 participatory planning systems increase sustainability
56 and self-reliance at local and regional scale. Also, they
57 are more efficient in the implementation phase and
58 consequently more responsive to change (Werner et al.
59 2003). Within participatory planning, we can identify
60 two major governance schemes. They are decisive for
61 the overall organization and performance of the
62 planning processes and the efficiency to which target
63 formulations, such as ecosystem services (ES) can be
64 used for support. The first one, self-governance, also
65 known under ‘‘integrated land use planning’’ in
66 development research and aid (Fu
¨rst et al. 2013b), is
67 understood as a planning strategy which is driven by
68 actors at place. In this case, actors overtake full
69 responsibility for the whole process up to results
70 implementation (Bourgoin et al. 2012; Klug 2012).
71 The second scheme, known as ‘‘multi-level gover-
72 nance’’ (Schroeter et al. 2014), is mainly based on
73 cooperation between hierarchic and institutionalized
74 planning structures at regional or local communities
75 (Fu
¨rst et al. 2012).
76 Many prerequisites for the improvement and evo-
77 lution of such participatory land use planning schemes
78 have been identified (Ostrom 2009; Gruber 2010). The
79 majority of them are dependent on the resource and
80 governance system, and socio-cultural traditions con-
81 sidering the involvement of stakeholders and the
82 distribution of power. An important prerequisite for
land owners and land users, is then, the availability of a
shared knowledge base that informs planning actors
about relationships between land use patterns, land-
scape functioning and benefits. Of equal importance,
participatory land use planning, benefits nowadays
from social networks that foster social learning and
collective actions, for example collaboration between
land owners and managers across the landscape
¨m and Rova 2010; Albert et al. 2010).
Usually, the position and role of science is affected
when policy regulations are released by governments.
Hence, it is crucial to open up challenges and
opportunities for increasing involvement of actors in
land use planning (Beunen and Opdam 2011).
According to the type of planning process, different
sources of knowledge and experiences can have
different impacts on direct inputs for policy improve-
ment to facilitate various negotiation processes. Sim-
ilarly, in cases where the role of the government
diminishes, we may ask how expert and scientific
knowledge can play a role to achieve sustainability.
Consequently, we can identify a strong need for
scientific methods that do not only facilitate shared
understanding of the human-landscape relationships,
but also foster collective management of common
values (Opdam 2013). To develop such methods, a
comprehensive, integrative common language with
shared concepts and reference systems is of highest
importance. The ES concept might be the most
prominent and—due to its meanwhile great success
in inflowing science and policy making—most sus-
tainable solution to support integration. On the other
hand, we have to acknowledge that ES is a concept that
is still unknown in practice or not yet perceived by the
wider society as applicable for decision making (de
Groot et al. 2010; Hauck et al. 2013). Existing
environmental monitoring and survey approaches
deliver incomplete information, missing sometimes
the decision scale level (Chapman 2012; Koschke
et al. 2012), and therefore might not satisfy the need to
identify and manage trade-offs related to the optimal
provision of one or several services (Inostroza et al.
The spatial dimension of ES is a key issue for
stakeholders since they are more interested to know
‘where’’ to implement planning than ‘‘why’’. Usually,
they have clear ideas of local and regional problems,
but they need operational and spatial solutions.
Although landscape ecological assessment tools
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132 support the application of ES (McIntyre et al. 2013;
133 Risser and Iverson 2013; Iverson et al. 2014), suffi-
134 cient information of stakeholders in evaluating deci-
135 sion alternatives at landscape scale is still challenging,
136 particularly when it comes to an integration of the
137 supply and demand side in ES (e.g. Mastrangelo et al.
138 2014).
139 The objective of this paper is to suggest general-
140 izable ‘‘success and risk criteria’’ within an opera-
141 tional scheme that can be standardized. The aim is to
142 be able to assess how successful the application of the
143 ES concept contributes to facilitate participatory
144 planning. Hereby we consider the two main gover-
145 nance schemes, self-governance and multilevel gov-
146 ernance to test concretely how our scheme can
147 contribute to learn from practice. First, we identify
148 criteria that represent the above described main
149 advantages and potential critical aspects to assess
150 strengths and weaknesses of the ES concept in
151 planning. Subsequently, we combine strengths (S)–
152 weaknesses (W) analyses with a balanced score card
153 approach that breaks our criteria down to a qualitative
154 assessment on a scale from minus twenty to plus
155 twenty to compare their degree of fulfillment. Finally,
156 this framework is applied on two case studies, each
157 representing one of the two governance modes. We
158 discuss the applicability of the balanced score card
159 approach and how to further adapt and develop it into a
160 monitoring tool that provides guidance for planning
161 practitioners when applying the ES concept.
162 Advantages of using the ES concept
163 in participatory land use planning
164 Shared knowledge base: integrating disciplinary
165 knowledge
166 The concept of ES has greatly contributed in integrat-
167 ing knowledge on ecosystem functioning and pro-
168 cesses and may therefore serve as a holistic framework
169 for many disciplinary oriented scholars towards
170 implementation of operational outputs into planning
171 practice (Baker et al. 2013; Fu et al. 2013; Opdam et al.
172 2013). In all, the concept has gained high public
173 and scientific perception in the integrative assess-
174 ment of land use and land use patterns changes (Fu
175 et al. 2013b; Jessel and Jacobs 2005). The concept
176 is acknowledged to support thinking towards
opportunities rather than towards problems (Baker
et al. 2013). It helps in the elaboration of municipal
budgets (Go
´mez-Baggethun and Barton 2013),
embraces both individual and common benefits (e.g.
Broch et al. 2013), fosters a landscape level thinking
rather than micro-scale solutions (Temorshuizen and
Opdam 2009) and facilitates the balancing of short
term and long term needs and benefits for sustainable
development (e.g. Bos
´2006). Being a broad
concept, ES could bridge disciplinary views on the
nature–human relationship and link values perceived
by widely different actors in the landscape (e.g.
Larondelle and Haase 2012).
Building a shared vision
One of the benefits of the concept of ES, is the
capability for the formulation of different perceptions
and desires regarding benefits and values for future
landscapes. This provides a conceptual basis for
integrating actor preferences’ as a starting point for
adapting a land system based on participative land use
planning. The fact that desired goals are expressed in a
similar set of terms will facilitate understanding by
actors of each other’s values and beliefs. However, it
must be considered that perceptions of actors depend
on their position within social groups and might vary
with culture, gender, lifestyles and knowledge (Frank
et al. 2013). As pointed out by Temorshuizen and
Opdam (2009), deliberation about why and how to
adapt the landscape to future challenges always
pertains to values and benefits perceived by people
that own or use the landscape in a particular way.
Therefore, actors should be capable of linking knowl-
edge on biophysical processes to perception of values.
This exercise can be complex because of the wide
variety of opinions regarding how landscapes develop
outside the interaction of natural processes and human
interventions. Views may entail gaining purely eco-
nomic profits from using the land, ensuring the holistic
principle of sustainable use or even legal protection for
reasons of intrinsic values such as landscape aesthetics
or biodiversity (Koschke et al. 2012; Frank et al.
Social network and collaboration
The concept of ES can help to improve relationships
between actors in a land use planning process and
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222 thereby influence the building of social networks that
223 form a sustainable structure for translating plans and
224 ideas into actions. Actors can play two major roles, the
225 one of a supplier of agreed private and public services
226 and commodities and/or the one of a demander.
227 Demanders might be interested in several services at
228 the same time, and several demanders may share
229 interests. On the supplier side, the application of the
230 ES concept could contribute knowledge about the
231 required environmental and spatial conditions for their
232 delivery and might therefore stimulate awareness how
233 to better coordinate the land use pattern and make use
234 of place-based benefits for a service and related
235 externalities. Steingro
¨ver et al. (2010) showed that the
236 perception of common benefits from ES, stimulated
237 collaboration in relation to vision building and land-
238 scape level partnerships among farmers, water man-
239 agers and advocates for cultural landscape and
240 biodiversity. Thus, within this actors interplay, the
241 willingness to cooperate can be strongly influenced by
242 beliefs about different goals and aims. In this context,
243 the potential of the ES concept to address the interests
244 of multiple actors is of relevance: landscape scale
245 plans need to capture and communicate a vision on
246 how to represent real word complexity and should
247 allow actors to work together without formalistic
248 agreement. Such plans can be understood as boundary
249 objects, characterized by being vague enough to bring
250 the different discourses together in a ‘middle ground’,
251 but strong enough to emphasize common benefits
252 (Fu
¨rst et al. 2013a). The terms ecosystem service and
253 landscape service have been proposed to play such a
254 role as boundary concept (Temorshuizen and Opdam
255 2009), but as far as we know empirical evidence
256 supporting this proposition has not been published.
257 Critical aspects of using the ES concept
258 in participatory planning
259 Requested knowledge basis and training, actor
260 inequality
261 A successful application of the ES concept requests
262 the standardization of easily assessable and accessible
263 sets of indicators that support the selection of case-
264 sensitive services without restrictions. However, many
265 actors in land use planning might not have enough
266 understanding of what is hidden behind the different
services and how these are based on such indicators.
As a result, communication between scientific actors
and professionals in planning, and those, who are
locally concerned, but not trained in using the concept,
becomes more complex (Fu
¨rst et al. 2011). In the
worst case, non-professional actors might even fail to
express their needs and ideas being unable to cope
with transforming them into services which reflect
their intentions (see e.g. Boaden et al. 1980). On the
other hand, Casado-Arzuaga et al. (2013) highlighted
for urban greenbelts in the Bilbao region, Spain, that
users and interest groups are very well capable of
distinguishing current and desired benefits. Cairns
(1996) warned however against an overemphasis of
easily assessable and visible services through not well
trained actors that provokes an imbalance in selected
services for regional planning decisions and therefore
might question long-term sustainability.
Supporting the detection of supply–demand
It is important, when applying ES in planning, to
consider discrepancies between the areas where one or
several services are requested and consumed, and
where these are produced. Also, some areas might
connect provisioning areas and those, where services
are consumed without benefiting from these services
or being confronted to environmental and economic
impacts to provide them (Syrbe and Walz 2012). The
ES concept supports thereby the identification of prior
areas where one or a bundle of services can be
provided. Also, trade-offs can be evaluated as they
occur in the landscape when its functioning is
optimized (Nelson et al. 2009). Participatory land
use planning as such does not support balancing
supply and demand in a supra-regional context and can
thereby provoke trade-offs through resource overex-
ploitation outside the planning system boundaries that
are not considered in the decision making process.
Schemes as the ecological footprint analysis (Rees
1996) help to detect such spatial shortcomings and
could be included as a decisive and helpful criterion in
using the ES concept: by combining both, the virtual
area that is needed to feed the demand for a service or
bundle of services within a planning context can be
calculated and compared against the land availability.
So far however, this integration has not yet been
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314 Involvement of socio-ecological–economic
315 system aspects in planning
316 The ES approach does not address properly two major
317 aspects in the understanding and functioning of socio-
318 ecological systems. First, socio-ecological systems
319 must be understood as a spatially and temporally
320 dynamic compound of interacting entities that impact
321 each other and may provoke different expression of
322 properties and behavior of each entity. Economic
323 decisions done by actors to settle and stay within a
324 particular region, are driven by concrete needs such as
325 job provision, income generation and security, that are
326 only indirectly and unclearlyexpressed as benefits taken
327 from ecosystems and their services without concretiza-
328 tion of how this process is done. This is closely related
329 with the problem of how to express best qualitatively or
330 quantitatively the value of an ecosystem service to make
331 it applicable in planning processes. Perceived values of
332 ES can vary greatly depending on the axiological,
333 ontological, and epistemological viewpoint of those
334 who perform the evaluation (Go
´mez-Baggethun and
335 Barton 2013). If the expression of a service value by
336 monetary or non-monetary terms is overemphasized, it
337 might hide the fact that this value is only a virtual one
338 which does not correspond to any real willingness to pay
339 or invest (Bos
´2006). A request is therefore to
340 appropriately define epistemological system boundaries
341 within which different valuation approaches can be
342 consistently combined (Becker 2012).
343 Score card for assessing the success of applying
344 the ES concept in planning
345 To assess how successful the ES concept adds to
346 facilitating planning processes and building consensus
347 between actors, we structured the above suggested
348 advantages and potential critical aspects in a matrix
349 (Fig. 1) that involves questions related to text sections
350 ‘‘ Shared knowledge base: integrating disciplinary
351 knowledge’’ , ‘‘ Building a shared vision’’ , ‘‘ Social
352 network and collaboration’ (advantages) and
353 ‘‘ Requested knowledge basis and training, actor
354 inequality’’ , ‘‘Supporting the detection of supply-
355 demand relationships’’ , ‘‘Involvement of socio-eco-
356 logical–economic system aspects in planning’’ (criti-
357 cal aspects). To fine-detect where an advantage was
358 particularly met or where a critical aspect was of
specific importance, we structured our questions into
two scales, a temporal scale that addresses short and
medium term impacts, and a spatial scale that focuses
on the local and regional level. For the spatial scale,
we restrict our analysis to the regional and local
context, where participatory planning that leads to
concrete actions can happen, while national or EU
contexts that would mean policy planning are outside
of our focus. Consequently, at the temporal scale, we
focus on short and medium term as we assume that
participatory land use planning addresses time scales
from (intra)annual (management planning, regional
economic development) up to 5–10 years maximum.
Figure 1: score card for assessing how efficient the
use of the ES concept was in facilitating the planning
process by supporting consensus building and enhanc-
ing collective action.
To get an overall assessment, we suggest first
assessing each of the questions related to potential
advantages on a scale from 0 (=advantage was not
successfully realized or was irrelevant for this study)
to 5 (=advantage was highly relevant in facilitating the
process and in consensus building). Similarly we
suggest assessing the impact of each of the critical
aspects on a scale from -5(=critical aspects were
highly relevant) to 0 (=critical aspect had no impact or
was not relevant). In a second step, we suggest to
calculate an average value for each matrix cell
(=advantages relevant at short and long term, and at
local and regional scale; critical aspects relevant at
short and long term, and at local and regional scale by
division through 3). By doing so, we can fine-detect at
which temporal or spatial scale the application of the
ES concept added or hampered particularly the
successful planning. In a third step, we suggest adding
the points achieved for each matrix cell on the
advantages side and on the critical aspects side. On
the advantage scale, maximally 20 points can be
achieved, on the critical aspects side, maximally -20
points. Finally, summing up the points achieved for
advantages and risks will help to analyze the general
balance: an overall score closer to ?20 will highly
recommend the use of ES approach for similar cases.
Contrariwise, a score closer to -20 might warn about
weaknesses in its application. A score close to 0 is
neutral, in terms that advantages are equal to potential
disadvantages. Similarly, also partial overall-scores
could be calculated line-by-line to weight advantages
and risks for the different temporal and spatial scales.
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408 Appraisal of the framework based on case studies
409 For illustrating our framework, we selected two case
410 studies, which represent two governance modes in
411 participatory land use planning that are typical in a
412 European and international context. The case study
413 Hoeksche Waard, The Netherlands, stands for the
414 highest level in participation, community based plan-
415 ning, with a pure bottom-up process in planning. Such
416 cases might also be relevant for developing countries,
417 where legal instruments in planning are difficult to be
418 applied due to the great impact of ethnical aspects and
419 the high decision power of land-owning communities.
420 The case study Upper-Elbe-Valley–Eastern-Ore-Mts.,
421 Germany stands for a form of multi-level governance
422 with a more modest level of participation and high
423 relevance of a decision hierarchy; this might be more
424 representative for typical European planning systems.
425 We made use of these case studies to explore the
426 applicability of our suggested framework and learn
427 how it can be further developed. In both cases, the
428 assessment was conducted by us as the coordinators of
429 the application cases so that it can only be considered
430 as a highly subjective assessment example. Further
431 tests with more actors from the presented and other
432 case studies are planned.
Case study Hoeksche Waard, The Netherlands
The Hoeksche Waard is a 300 km
former estuarine
floodplain used for agriculture ever since the early
middle ages (Steingro
¨ver et al. 2010). The area, close
to the cities of Rotterdam and Dordrecht, is largely
used for arable farming. With urban populations close
by, farmer groups decided to establish sustainable
agriculture by bringing down the level of chemical
pest control. They expected that by reconstructing
their way of farming, they will create in the long run a
stronger position as a provider of highly important ES,
particularly of food, in this peri-urban landscape.
¨ver et al. (2010) were asked to help them with
achieving this ambition.
Initially, the ecosystem service of natural pest
regulation was used as a common perspective for the
farmers. The researchers connected this ecosystem
service to the spatial network of semi-natural elements
extending over the farm landscape. They combined
farmer’s knowledge about agricultural practices with
generic knowledge from landscape ecology and insect
ecology to construct a spatial design tool. This tool
was used by the farmer groups to detect where the
green infrastructure network should be expanded and
enforced to achieve the desired performance of the
Fig. 1 Score card for
assessing how efficient the
use of the ES concept was in
facilitating the planning
process by supporting
consensus building and
enhancing collective action
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458 natural pest control service. Green infrastructure also
459 included parts of the landscape that were owned and
460 managed by public organizations and other actors.
461 Therefore, the researchers proposed that green infra-
462 structure could provide further services such as water
463 purification, protecting species and creating landscape
464 identity. This made it possible to involve a local
465 conservationists group, the water board and road
466 managers, resulting in cooperative relationships with
467 the farmers. Farmer and naturalist groups, which were
468 previously opposing, found that they shared the same
advantages by contributing to the green infrastructure
network and they developed a shared management plan.
All actor groups worked together in applying the
design tool. The tool connects the structure of the
network to the provisioning of the priority service. It
helped to reveal to farmers where the existing network
was not robust enough to provide the desired pest
control service, and together, from a landscape level
perspective, they agreed where additional measures
were demanded. A collective management plan for the
green infrastructure was finally made.
Table 1 Application of the balanced score card to the Hoeksche Waard case study
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480 Following a first year in which one farm successfully
481 refrained from using pesticides, an increasing number
482 of farmers started to create flowery strips in the margins
483 of their fields, while the water board and the conser-
484 vation group adapted the management of dykes and
485 water courses. The network expanded over the years
486 and farmers insisted to give the green infrastructure a
487 prominent place in the regional landscape plan. The
488 effect of the structural change on the occurrence of
489 natural enemies of pests was monitored on the request
490 of farmers. In the course of the implementation project,
491 an improvement of biodiversity and recreational visi-
492 tors was noticed. The use of ES improved the sustain-
493 able use of the land. The landscape change enforced the
494 role of natural processes in the production of food,
495 which is less aggravating for the ecological system and
496 uses less energy and resources. Above that, the social
497 network was enhanced, farmers enjoyed their work
498 better and the area is becoming an internationally
499 known example of innovative landscape management.
500 When applying our suggested matrix, we achieve
501 the following result (Table 1).
502 Case study Upper-Elbe-Valley–Eastern-Ore-Mts
503 Focus of this case study was updating a regional plan for
504 the region Upper-Elbe-Valley–Eastern-Ore-Mts., which
505 is situated in the middle of Saxony, Germany. With the
506 Saxon capital Dresden, it comprises an area of 3,500 km
507 with high land use conflicts and great public interest in
508 contributing to the plan. Take notice that the German
509 planning system is strictly hierarchically organized and
510 the role of the regional plan is to break down political
511 goals formulated at EU, national and federal state level to
512 a concrete and spatially explicit delineation of areas
513 which are dedicated prior or preferably to the provision of
514 a specific service or good, including nature conservation
515 (Fu
¨rst et al. 2012). Consequently, the question how to
516 realize these measures in collaborative actions was out of
517 the scope of this study.
518 Updating the regional plan in Upper-Elbe–Eastern-
519 Ore-Mts. was organized as a participatory consensus
520 building process including consultation of institutional
521 actors (state administrations in agricultural, forest and
522 water management planning, NGO’s in nature con-
523 servation and tourism and other regional interest
524 groups) and of public opinion. While the institutional
525 actors with their professional background contributed
526 easily by own planning suggestions, actors from the
general public needed support by the scientists that
accompanied the process to spell out their specific
desires and concerns (Fu
¨rst et al. 2011,2012): to
enable a higher level of public participation and equity
between institutional actors and publicity in submit-
ting comments and suggestions, the planning support
tool GISCAME was adapted. With this tool, partici-
patory scenario building and impact assessment were
conducted in a series of workshops and public events
organized by the regional planning authority, and the
LEADER and ILE (integrated rural development)
regions in the case study area (Fu
¨rst et al. 2011,2012;
Koschke et al. 2012; Frank et al. 2012).
The ES concept was used in the case study as a
consensus building framework, firstly between differing
philosophies of the institutional actors how to assess the
impact of land use alternatives and secondly as a means to
moderate between professional and public opinion. By
using the ES concept, areas that are highly exposed to
conflicting services requests could be detected, and most
preferable, integrative land use planning alternatives
were identified. An example where the ES concept was of
particular help for conflict detection and solution was the
search for most appropriate areas for wind power plant
parks. Furthermore, the concept helped to plan the
restructuring of industrial agricultural areas which
impacted their neighborhood through immense mass
movements due to missing capacity in regulating water
erosion. Preferable combinations between spatial re-
arrangements and introduction of green infrastructure
with altered management concepts such as no-till
farming and intercropping were identified (Lorenz et al.
2013). Finally, combined agriculture-agro-forestry and
forest land use pattern changes were tested and new
priority areas for afforestation and short rotation coppices
were selected that were clearly larger, better connected
and provided an improved overall benefit for multiple
services compared to the old regional plan (Fu
2013a; Witt et al. 2013). When applying our suggested
matrix, we achieve the following result (see Table 2).
Discussion: appraisal of the approach and way
Assessment of the applicability of the concept
We proposed six criteria to assess the performance of
the ES concept in participatory landscape planning,
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572 and based hereon a balanced score card approach to
573 apply them in a systematic way. As such, we intended
574 to contribute to a better understanding of how ES
575 contribute to collaborative decision making for land
576 use adaptation. We applied the tool in two case studies.
577 In both cases the suggested framework helped us to
578 detect advantages, but also potential shortcomings in
579 the practical use of the ES concept. The scoring of the
580 single criteria and matrix cells and the final calculation
581 of an overall balance was easily applicable for the
582 assessment of the case studies and for their
comparison. For instance, overemphasis of some
services groups such as regulating services or cultural
services was discovered; i.e. the framework shows
potential to contribute to an improved balance
between services groups for the future design of ES
applications in planning. In both cases, the framework
revealed that positive effects from using the ES
concept apply more in the long run, while in the
German study case, also some negative effects became
more pronounced when using a long term perspective.
With this, our suggested frame work can add to a
Table 2 Application of the balanced score card to the Upper-Elbe-Valley–Eastern-Ore-Mts. case study
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594 sustainability and intergenerational equity check by
595 revealing potential shortcomings from short or long
596 term optimization. Advantages at local scale achieved
597 for the two case studies a higher scoring than for the
598 regional scale, i.e. by using the score-card criteria we
599 could reveal that local participation processes were
600 better supported through the ES concept as compared
601 to strengthening interactions and collaboration
602 between local and regional actors.
603 Considering the applicability for different gover-
604 nance systems in planning, we found that our criteria
605 worked well for both case studies. For the Dutch case
606 study Hoeksche Waard with its community-based
607 planning background, our score card delivers a higher
608 overall balance of 14.7 points, i.e. the use of the ES
609 concept was of an overall higher benefit compared to
610 the multi-scale governance context in Germany with
611 an overall score of only 8.7.
612 The impact of the ES concept on the quality of
613 participation in planning, as revealed by the balanced
614 score card, is influenced by the type ofplanning process
615 and its organizational structure, for example by the
616 method that is used to involve local planning groups.
617 For instance, collaboration between regional authorities
618 and local stakeholder groups may be enhanced by using
619 the ecosystem service concept in goal setting, but also
620 by how the actor involvement is organized by a regional
621 planning authority. Therefore, we suggest that the
622 application of the balanced score card is complemented
623 by analyzing the perception of the planning actors of the
624 organizational structure of the planning process. Infor-
625 mation on the role and contribution of social networks
626 before, during and after the planning process may also
627 add to the understanding of the role of the ES concept in
628 land use planning.
629 A possible weakness of the suggested score card
630 when being applied to compare planning cases is that
631 the different sub-criteria in the matrix might not be
632 unequivocal enough to exclude subjectivity in per-
633 forming the assessment. Accompanying information
634 boxes that explain the background of the criteria and
635 give examples how to judge them might be helpful to
636 overcome this problem.
637 Outlook
638 All in all, as a mission-oriented discipline, ecosystem
639 service research should be user-inspired and user-
640 useful (Raymond et al. 2010), which will require that
researchers respond to stakeholder needs from the
outset and collaborate with them in strategy develop-
ment and implementation. Outcomes of social, bio-
physical, and valuation assessments are needed to
identify opportunities and constraints in order to build
up scenarios that support rational planning. Opera-
tional models in the future should focus on projects for
safeguarding ES that are likely to empower stake-
holders to implement effective on-the-ground man-
agement that will achieve resilience of the
corresponding social–ecological systems.
Many papers comment on the value of the ES
concept for planning and criticize at the same time its
failure in the planning practice. ES often go unrecog-
nized in policies, markets, conservation and natural
resource management practices. This occurs in part
because the concept is still too new, compared to
concepts such as sustainability or multifunctionality to
resonate with mainstream decision-makers at regional
scale (Seppelt et al. 2012). Consequently, demands for
ecosystem service based instruments that support
planning and the sustainable of natural resources are
increasing at a greater pace than scientists are able to
provide robust tools to support planning processes.
With our balanced score card approach, we intended to
contribute to a more objective assessment why failures
happened and how to take benefit from positive
examples. Working with the balanced score card
approach supports reflecting in a structured and
detailed way own case studies, fosters comparing
application cases of ES in planning and creates the
basis for a collective learning process not only
between scientist and planning actors, but also among
planning scientists.
For developing the full potential of the balanced
score card tool, it will be essential to apply and
reconsider the presented structure and criteria in a
series of case studies and governance systems in
planning. This would help to detect if the questions
and criteria are generic enough for a larger audience or
if essential aspects for assessing the usability of the ES
concept in planning as such or in specific planning
phases were ignored. By doing so, a reference system
for the scoring could be generated that facilitates the
judgment and leads to its further standardization.
The score card should be iteratively adapted and
developed into a monitoring tool that provides guid-
ance for planning practitioners in the ES concept
application: we suggest that it may be used for
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690 comparing ex-ante and ex-post the overall perfor-
691 mance and success of the ES concept in planning
692 processes. With this, a data base could be built for
693 training in order to improve the role of ES in land use
694 planning.
695 Acknowledgments The idea for this paper was born from the
696 workshop organized at the EcoSummit 2012 ‘‘Structure
697 matters—The potential of land-use pattern to contribute to ES
698 provision’’. It underwent an intensive discussion process and we
699 wish to thank cordially the participants of this workshop, for
700 sharing ideas and supporting the development of this paper.
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... Наважимось умовно об'єднати досліджені нами роботи з цієї проблематики у кілька принципово різних груп. Перша -це теоретики, які розробляють саму концепцію ЕП та намагаються оцінити потенційний вплив застосування ЕП на взаємовідносини між суб'єктами ЕП [360,372,374,376,384,395]. Друга група публікацій намагається дослідити саме шляхи затосування ЕП, проблеми, що його супроводжують, для виробників і користувачів ЕП [359,383,397,413,429,435]. ...
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Nature forms interdependent networks in a landscape, which is key to the survival of species and the maintenance of genetic diversity. Nature provides crucial socio-economic benefits to people, but they are typically undervalued in political decisions. This has led to the concept of Green Infrastructure (GI), which defines an interlinked network of (semi-)natural areas with high ecological values for wildlife and people, to be conserved and managed in priority to preserve biodiversity and ecosystem services. This relatively new concept has been used in different contexts, but with widely diverging interpretations. There is no apparent consensus in the scientific literature on the methodology to map and implement GI. This paper serves as an informed primer for researchers that are new to GI mapping understand the key principles and terminology for the needs of their own case-study, and as a framework for more advance researchers willing to contribute to the formalization of the concept. Through a literature review of articles on creating GI networks, we summarized and evaluated commonly used methods to identify and map GI. We provided key insights for the assessment of diversity, ecosystem services and landscape connectivity, the three ‘pillars’ on which GI identification is based according to its definition. Based on this literature review, we propose 5 theoretical levels toward a more complex, reliable and integrative approach to identify GI networks. We then discuss the applications and limits of such method and point out future challenges for GI identification and implementation.
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Engineers play a vital role in enabling the sustainable development of their societies. Thus, it is necessary to teach sustainability in universities, especially for engineering students, for a more sustainable future. The present work aims to measure and enhance engineering students’ awareness of sustainability by monitoring and evaluating learning and student outcomes during the last stages of an engineering curriculum and its culminating major design experience. A questionnaire to assess students’ awareness of sustainability and its tools is implemented. From this empirical study, obstacles to the awareness of sustainability through engineering education are discussed. The analysis of the results of the questionnaire implies the modification of the structure of senior projects and other capstone design courses in order to include a proposed teaching and assessment framework. This framework emphasizes students’ ability to understand and use effective sustainability tools, within the environment of their major design experience. The framework is composed of two paths. The first path concerns course design through which sustainability concepts and methods are included in several course elements. The second path addresses the assessment of the attainment of sustainability objectives by the students.
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Three case-studies were used to understand the conflicts and synergies between forage production, the nature conservation value, carbon stocks and their relations to several ecosystem properties. The first case study highlights the importance of abiotic gradients and land use parameters in the genesis of conflicts and synergies between services and properties. Identifying the chain of causes and effects on final services allows targeting the most relevant determinants of services in planning and management schemes. For instance, biomass removal, ANPP and fertilization need to be well balanced on the landscape scale in order to both conserve endangered birds and yield sales from forage production. Incorporating this chain of responses and effects into new spatial optimization models should allow us to identify the best spatial planning strategy that resolves the trade-off between sales of forage-based products and species conservation in multifunctional landscapes.The second case allows us to understand the perceptions of stakeholders, who have a strong concept about how the landscape provides services and ecosystem properties. The different perceptions are revealed through multi-dimensional constructs based on biophysical variables, reflecting the importance of social contexts. Even elementary provisioning services such as forage production were linked to different values, ecosystem properties and land uses. Our results indicate that notions and values of services are strongly influenced by different social contexts, involving current livelihoods, professional interests and traditions. Formal stakeholder assessments of ecosystem services to establish or improve sustainable land management thus need to take into account that stakeholder groups interpret ecosystem services in different ways and give them different meanings. We therefore argue that ecosystem service assessments by stakeholders should be complemented by determining indicators of biophysical ecosystem properties, allowing the evaluation of the correspondence between stakeholder perceptions. Ultimately, analyses of the complex social-ecological contexts forming stakeholder attitudes towards ecosystems should be encouraged. The third case provides revealing results on the functionality of the vegetation in response to key environmental variables, i.e. biomass removal, soil nutrients and water gradient, and how associations of traits determine trade-offs and synergies between ecosystem properties and services. Contrary to the plant- or leaf economics, our results suggest the trade-offs and synergies between plant functional traits found here are not explained by a resource acquisition vs. resource conservation trade-off. Here the variation of plant functional traits in respond to disturbance, may express a trade-off on a gradient of well-established competitors’ species (persistence) vs. competition for establishment. These results indicate that plant community assemblies and associated specific key plant traits can well explain the variation of determinant environmental parameters and their effects on ecosystem properties and services. Empirical approaches, as used here, may help to optimize management strategies under the threats of environmental change and strong land-use pressure. This thesis is an example of scientific work based on the understanding of a complex socio-ecological system through the study of (1) ecosystem processes and (2) the conceptual system of the main actors responsible for its future. The ecosystem service framework served as basis to analyze and structure parameters and relationships by applying structural equation models. The use of these results may offer insights to regional managers, policy makers and landscape planners in order to implement successful management solutions.
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Co-management constitutes a certain type of institutional arrangement that has gained increased attention among both policy makers and researchers involved in the field of natural resource management. Yet the concept of co-management is broad, and our knowledge about how different kinds of management structures affect the ability to deal with challenges pertinent to the commons is limited. One of these challenges is to foster an adaptive management process, i.e., a process in which rules are continuously revised and changed according to what is known about the ecological system. We aim to address the relationship between different kinds of co-management structures and adaptive management. To this end, we conducted a comparative case study of two Fishery Conservation Areas in Sweden. The concept of networks and the formal method of social network analysis are applied as theoretical and methodological devices. Building on previous research, we propose that adaptive management processes occur in co-management networks consisting of a heterogeneous set of actors that are centrally and densely integrated. Networks of this kind are believed to promote a management process in which actors with disparate perspectives and resources formulate a common view regarding the condition of the ecosystem, the basic problem to be solved, and what measures to adopt. The empirical findings support the existence of such a relationship. Nonetheless, the restricted empirical material, an inability to control for hidden variables, and a lack of success in determining causality among variables are all factors that call for more research.
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Communities situated in protected areas generate conflicts among park administrators, residents and scientists. Should they stay or should they go? This article presents a positive example of a community existing in a state park. The study describes the community’s governance process as well as how the park administration and the community solve the conflicts that arise and achieve a method of co-management in a multi-level governance process. The analysis is based on the Management and Transition Framework (MTF). We used a case study approach and collected data via document study, participatory observation and qualitative interviews. We find that the agreed system of community-based co-management has improved the implementation and enforcement of the state park’s rules through negotiation and communication mechanisms in the park council. This relative success is due to the construction of social capital, equality and empowerment. For state parks in similar situations, the findings suggest that: 1) a community should have at least a minimal level of self-organization; 2) the empowerment of the community in the decision-making process is useful; 3) the park administration should gain the trust of the residents; and 4) the effective management of ecosystem services can create a win-win situation for the community as well as the park.
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To continue the reflections on the 30 year anniversary of the Allerton Park Workshop as initiated by Wu (2013), we present some reflections of the situation just before and developments after the workshop from two participants—one who was a chief organizer and synthesizer of the workshop as well as lead author of the subsequent document (and this piece), and one who was a brand new entrant into the newly formulated and wonderfully fascinating field of landscape ecology at the time of the workshop.
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The potential of landscapes to supply multiple benefits to society beyond commodities production has received increasing research and policy attention. Linking the concept of multifunctionality with the ecosystem services (ES) approach offers a promising avenue for producing scientific evidence to inform landscape planning, e.g., about the relative utility of land-sharing and land-sparing. However, the value for decision-making of ES-based multifunctionality assessments has been constrained by a significant conceptual and methodological dispersion. To contribute towards a cohesive framework for landscape multifunctionality, we analyse case studies of joint ES supply regarding ten criteria designed to ultimately answer four aspects: (i) the multifunctionality of what (e.g., landscapes), (ii) the type of multifunctionality (e.g., based on ES synergies), (iii) the procedure of multifunctionality assessments, and (iv) the purpose of multifunctionality. We constructed a typology of methodological approaches based on scores for criteria describing the evaluation method and the level of stakeholder participation in assessments of joint ES supply. Surveyed studies and underlying types of methodological approaches (spatial, socio-spatial, functional, spatio-functional) differed in most criteria. We illustrate the influence of methodological divergence on planning recommendations by comparing two studies employing contrasting approaches (spatial and functional) to assess the joint supply of wildlife habitat and agricultural production in the Argentine Chaco. We distinguish between a pattern-based and process-based multifunctionality, where the latter can only be detected through approaches considering the ecological processes (e.g., ES complementarities) supporting the supply of multiple ES (functional and spatio-functional). Finally, we propose an integrated approach for assessing a socially-relevant process-based multifunctionality.
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Abstract The concept of ecosystem services from landscapes is rapidly gaining momentum as a language to communicate values and benefits to scientists and lay alike. Landscape ecology has an enormous contribution to make to this field, and one could argue, uniquely so. Tools developed or adapted for landscape ecology are being increasingly used to assist with the quantification, modelling, mapping, and valuing of ecosystem services. Several of these tools and methods encased therein are described among the eleven papers presented in this special issue, and their application has the potential to facilitate the management and promotion of services within ecosystems. Papers are associated with each of the four key categories of services that ecosystems provide to humans: supporting, provisioning, regulating, and cultural. The papers represent work conducted in eleven different countries, especially from South America. Each carries a unique approach to address a particular question pertaining to a particular set of ecosystem services. These studies are designed to inform and improve the economic, environmental and social values of the ecosystem services. This knowledge should help to develop new management alternatives for sustaining and planning ecosystems and the services they provide at different scales in space and time. We believe that these papers will create interest and inform management of some potential methods to evaluate ecosystem services at the landscape level with an integrative approach, offering new tools for management and conservation.
Community-based landscape governance is considered as conditional to achieving sustainable landscape. I consider landscape governance from the point of view of adapting landscapes to create value out of ecosystem services, using the social–ecological system model as a theoretical framework. I advocate the use of the term landscape services because it can serve as a common ground between science and local communities, and between scientists from different disciplines. Six principles for sustainable landscape change are presented, which can be developed as a checklist in planning, and as requirements to scientific methods. From the current literature it is obvious that ecosystem service research does not provide the type of science that is required to support sustainable, community-based landscape planning. Research is mainly science driven, focussed on assessments at large spatial scale, and with policy users in mind. Active involvement of local stakeholders is scarce. There is a strong demand for approaches that are able to involve local governance networks and move the ecosystem services research out of the static mapping and evaluation approaches towards dynamic systems thinking. The chapter ends with a research agenda.
The article presents a multicriteria assessment framework for the qualitative estimation of regional potentials to provide ecosystem services as a prerequisite to support regional development planning. We applied this approach to a model region in Saxony, Eastern Germany. For the estimation of the potentials of the model region to provide ecosystem services, we used a modified approach compared to the Millenium Ecosystem Assessment (2005). We then employed a benefit transfer and a purely expert driven approach to assess contribution of the land cover classes in our model region to the provision of ecosystem services. In a subsequent step, the services in our set were combined to ecosystem services groups that were designed together with regional actors, while considering their ideas, concerns and experiences in regional decision making. The latter was analyzed in a weighting experiment, in which different weighting approaches were tested. Based upon this, we analyzed the performance of the model region to provide ecosystem services and generated ecosystem services distribution maps. We could show that the different data gathering methods “benefit transfer” and “expert-based assessment” have a considerable impact on the evaluation outcomes. The results of our study show that the combination of selected services and land cover data can contribute to regional planning by communicating the effect of land cover change on ecosystem services groups, especially when applied as an evaluation basis in the tool Pimp Your Landscape (PYL). The approach supports also the assessment of the performance of a region to provide ecosystem services and the comparison of regions towards this aspect. Finally, we discuss the limitations of our approach that are related to coarse land cover data, lacking knowledge on the provision of ecosystem services at a landscape scale, and the difficulty to make relevant the ecosystem services concept in regional planning processes.