Biodiversity and Conservation

, Volume 19, Issue 10, pp 2773–2790 | Cite as

Ecosystem services and biodiversity conservation: concepts and a glossary

  • Richard Harrington
  • Christian Anton
  • Terence P. Dawson
  • Francesco de Bello
  • Christian K. Feld
  • John R. Haslett
  • Tatiana Kluvánkova-Oravská
  • Areti Kontogianni
  • Sandra Lavorel
  • Gary W. Luck
  • Mark D. A. Rounsevell
  • Michael J. Samways
  • Josef Settele
  • Michalis Skourtos
  • Joachim H. Spangenberg
  • Marie Vandewalle
  • Martin Zobel
  • Paula A. Harrison
Original Paper


The RUBICODE project draws on expertise from a range of disciplines to develop and integrate frameworks for assessing the impacts of environmental change on ecosystem service provision, and for rationalising biodiversity conservation in that light. With such diverse expertise and concepts involved, interested parties will not be familiar with all the key terminology. This paper defines the terms as used within the project and, where useful, discusses some reasoning behind the definitions. Terms are grouped by concept rather than being listed alphabetically.


Biodiversity Conservation DPSIR Ecosystem management Ecosystem services Ecosystem valuation Functional diversity Functional traits Service-providing unit Social–ecological systems 



This work was supported by the RUBICODE Coordination Action Project (Rationalising Biodiversity Conservation in Dynamic Ecosystems) funded under the Sixth Framework Programme of the European Commission (Contract No. 036890). RUBICODE is an endorsed project of the Global Land Project of the IGBP. The authors would like to thank all of the RUBICODE partners and associates for their contribution to the discussions necessary to produce this paper, and Professor Dave Raffaelli (University of York) for valuable comments on an earlier draft. The work also forms part of a BBSRC Institute Strategic Programme Grant to the Rothamsted Centre for Bioenergy and Climate Change.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard Harrington
    • 1
  • Christian Anton
    • 2
  • Terence P. Dawson
    • 3
  • Francesco de Bello
    • 8
  • Christian K. Feld
    • 4
  • John R. Haslett
    • 5
  • Tatiana Kluvánkova-Oravská
    • 6
  • Areti Kontogianni
    • 7
  • Sandra Lavorel
    • 8
  • Gary W. Luck
    • 9
  • Mark D. A. Rounsevell
    • 10
  • Michael J. Samways
    • 11
  • Josef Settele
    • 2
  • Michalis Skourtos
    • 12
  • Joachim H. Spangenberg
    • 13
  • Marie Vandewalle
    • 8
    • 14
  • Martin Zobel
    • 15
  • Paula A. Harrison
    • 16
  1. 1.Department of Plant and Invertebrate EcologyRothamsted Research, Centre for Bioenergy and Climate ChangeHarpendenUK
  2. 2.Department of Community EcologyUFZ – Helmholtz Centre for Environmental ResearchHalleGermany
  3. 3.School of GeographyUniversity of SouthamptonHighfieldUK
  4. 4.Department of Applied Zoology/HydrobiologyUniversity of Duisburg-EssenEssenGermany
  5. 5.Division of Zoology and Functional Anatomy, Department of Organismal BiologyUniversity of SalzburgSalzburgAustria
  6. 6.CETIP – IF SAS, Slovak Academy of SciencesBratislavaSlovak Republic
  7. 7.Department of Marine ScienceUniversity of AegeanMytiliniGreece
  8. 8.Laboratoire d’Ecologie AlpineUniversité Joseph FourierGrenoble Cedex 9France
  9. 9.Institute for Land, Water and SocietyCharles Sturt UniversityAlburyAustralia
  10. 10.Centre for the Study of Environmental Change and Sustainability, School of GeosciencesUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghUK
  11. 11.Department of Conservation Ecology and EntomologyUniversity of StellenboschMatielandSouth Africa
  12. 12.Department of EnvironmentUniversity of AegeanMytiliniGreece
  13. 13.SERI – Sustainable Europe Research Institute SERI Deutschland e.VCologneGermany
  14. 14.Department of Earth and Ecosystem SciencesLund UniversityLundSweden
  15. 15.Institute of Ecology and Earth SciencesUniversity of TartuTartuEstonia
  16. 16.Environmental Change InstituteOxford University Centre for the EnvironmentOxfordUK

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