Key landscape features in the provision of ecosystem services : insights for management

Schmidt, Katja and Martín-López, Berta and Phillips, Peter M. and Julius, Eike and Makan, Neville and Walz, Ariane (2019) Key landscape features in the provision of ecosystem services : insights for management. Land Use Policy, 82. pp. 353-366. ISSN 0264-8377 (

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Whereas ecosystem service research is increasingly being promoted in science and policy, the utilisation of ecosystem services knowledge remains largely underexplored for regional ecosystem management. To overcome the mere generation of knowledge and contribute to decision-making, scientists are facing the challenge of articulating specific implications of the ecosystem service approach for practical land use management. In this contribution, we compare the results of participatory mapping of ecosystem services with the existing management plan for the Pentland Hills Regional Park (Scotland, UK) to inform its future management plan. By conducting participatory mapping in a workshop with key stakeholders (n = 20), we identify hotspots of ecosystem services and the landscape features underpinning such hotspots. We then analyse to what extent these landscape features are the focus of the current management plan. We found a clear mismatch between the key landscape features underpinning the provision of ecosystem services and the management strategy suggested. Our findings allow for a better understanding of the required focus of future land use management to account for ecosystem services.