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Perceived ecosystem services (ES) and ecosystem disservices (EDS) from trees: insights from three case studies in Brazil and France



The landscape approach and the ecosystem services (ES) framework have been widely used to investigate human-nature relationships and orient landscape planning and management. However, ecosystem disservices (EDS) and their influence on how people interact with ecosystems have received less attention.


We aimed at assessing people’s preferences and perceptions of forest ES and EDS in three contrasted case studies. In the meantime, it aims at discussing the potential of considering both ES and EDS in landscape preference and sociocultural valuation studies.


Interviews with stakeholders were conducted in an agroforestry landscape (France), in the Atlantic Forest and in the Pampa grasslands (Brazil). Identified ES and EDS were classified into a common typology and analyzed through discourse analysis and quantitative methods to assess the variability in ES/EDS perceptions among respondents and among forest types.


Respondents cited 19 ES classes and 11 EDS classes, with strong variability among case studies. Contrasted perceptions and preferences among respondents were revealed. In the agroforestry landscape, EDS were particularly emphasized by people and contributed to the variability in people’s perceptions. In the Atlantic forest landscape, forested areas tended to contrast based on cultural ecosystem services. In the Pampa case study, EDS were particularly salient in people’s preferences concerning exotic forest plantations.


This study suggests that different types of forested areas produce specific ES/EDS, suggesting their complementarity at the landscape scale. The combination of ES and EDS therefore offers a promising research avenue for more consistent ES sociocultural valuations and for improving management recommendations.

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From the Agroforestry case study, we would like to thank the Grants from the ‘Fondation de France’ that supported this work. We are grateful to the farmers and inhabitants of the Canton of Aurignac, to the tourists, entrepreneurs and local residents of Monte Verde district, and to the local inhabitants of the Pampa biome who participated in these interviews for their willingness to participate in our research. We also appreciate the collaborators of the Atlantic Forest and the Pampa case studies for data collection. FZT received a postdoctoral fellowship from the ‘Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Ensino Superior’ (PNPD/CAPES).

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Correspondence to Fernanda Zimmermann Teixeira.

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Teixeira, F.Z., Bachi, L., Blanco, J. et al. Perceived ecosystem services (ES) and ecosystem disservices (EDS) from trees: insights from three case studies in Brazil and France. Landscape Ecol 34, 1583–1600 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10980-019-00778-y

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  • Sociocultural valuation
  • Preferences
  • Perceptions
  • Place-based research
  • Forest ecosystems
  • Landscape values