Interregional flows of ecosystem services: Concepts, typology and four cases

Ecosystem Services
By: , and 



Conserving and managing global natural capital requires an understanding of the complexity of flows of ecosystem services across geographic boundaries. Failing to understand and to incorporate these flows into national and international ecosystem assessments leads to incomplete and potentially skewed conclusions, impairing society’s ability to identify sustainable management and policy choices. In this paper, we synthesise existing knowledge and develop a conceptual framework for analysing interregional ecosystem service flows. We synthesise the types of such flows, the characteristics of sending and receiving socio-ecological systems, and the impacts of ecosystem service flows on interregional sustainability. Using four cases (trade of certified coffee, migration of northern pintails, flood protection in the Danube watershed, and information on giant pandas), we test the conceptual framework and show how an enhanced understanding of interregional telecouplings in socio-ecological systems can inform ecosystem service-based decision making and governance with respect to sustainability goals.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Interregional flows of ecosystem services: Concepts, typology and four cases
Series title Ecosystem Services
DOI 10.1016/j.ecoser.2018.02.003
Volume 31
Issue B
Year Published 2018
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Geosciences and Environmental Change Science Center
Description 11 p.
First page 231
Last page 241
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