Sustainability Science

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 107–118 | Cite as

Exploring the relationship between ecosystems and human well-being by understanding the preferences for natural capital-based and produced capital-based ecosystem services

  • Keiko Hori
  • Chiho Kamiyama
  • Osamu SaitoEmail author
Special Feature: Technical Report Future Scenarios for Socio-Ecological Production Landscape and Seascape
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Special Feature: Future Scenarios for Socio-Ecological Production Landscape and Seascape


Scenario analysis is recognized as a useful tool for exploring future changes in the relationships between ecosystem services (ES) and human well-being. This analysis should be carried out not only by experts but also by relevant stakeholders such as the public. In this study, we investigated the preference of Japanese people toward natural and produced capital-based ES by distributing questionnaires to the public for exploring the direction of ES utilization in the future. Respondents with diverse backgrounds living in Tokyo and Nanao city in Ishikawa prefecture answered a series of questions about the extent to which they preferred natural or produced capital-based ES. As the general tendency of the results, the preferences for ES from the natural capitals were stronger than ES from produced capital. The trends varied, depending on the attributes of the respondents. The stronger preference for natural capital-based ES was possibly a positive indication that utilizing ES from the natural capitals was significantly beneficial for human well-being. The results were informative to understand public perception on key aspects of ES utilization scenarios, including their preferences for specific types of ES.


Ecosystem services Natural capital Produced capital Preference 



This research was funded by the Environment Research and Technology Development Fund (1–1303 and S-15, Ministry of the Environment, Japan) and the Future Earth initiative promotion activities (Future scenarios and governance of social–ecological systems in the Asia–Pacific region through enhancing synergy combining indigenous and local knowledge with scientific knowledge (ES-Scenario), Japan Science and Technology Agency).

Supplementary material

11625_2018_632_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (99 kb)
Supplementary Appendix (PDF 99 kb)


  1. Amano I, Kurisu K, Nakatani J, Hanaki K (2013) Effect of provided information and recipient’s personality on risk perception of drinking water. J Jpn Soc Water Environ 36(1):11–22CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Ataka S, Sekiguchi H, Sato S, Watanabe M (2008) An attempt of internet-survey on public attitudes towards science and technology. Discussion Paper No.45, 2nd Policy-Oriented Research Group, National Institute of Science and Technology Policy (NISTEP), Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), JAPAN. Accessed 20 June 2018
  3. Bureau of General Affairs of Tokyo Metropolitan Government (2018) A map of municipalities of Tokyo. Accessed 20 June 2018
  4. Bureau of Urban Development of Tokyo Metropolitan Government (2011) Land use of Tokyo. Accessed 20 June 2018
  5. Cetinkaya G (2009) Challenges for the maintenance of traditional knowledge in the Satoyama and Satoumi ecosystems, Noto Peninsula, Japan. Hum Ecol Rev 16(1):27–40Google Scholar
  6. Christensen RHB (2018) Ordinal-regression models for ordinal data, R package version 2018, 4–19. Accessed 24 Apr 2018
  7. Costanza R, de Groot R, Sutton P, van der Ploeg S, Anderson SJ, Kubiszewski I, Farber S, Turner RK (2014) Changes in the global value of ecosystem services. Glob Environ Change 26:152–158CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Daly H (1995) On Wilfred Beckerman’s critique of sustainable development. Environ Values 4:49–55CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Díaz S, Demissew S, Carabias J, Joly C, Lonsdale M, Ash N, Larigauderie A, Adhikari JR, Arico S, Báldi A, Bartuska A, Baste IA, Bilgin A, Brondizio E, Chan KMA, Figueroa VE, Duraiappah A, Fischer M, Hill R, Koetz T, Leadley P, Lyver P, Mace GM, Martin-Lopez B, Okumura M, Pacheco D, Pascual U, Pérez ES, Reyers B, Roth E, Saito O, Scholes RJ, Sharma N, Tallis H, Thaman R, Watson R, Yahara T, Hamid ZA, Akosim C, Al-Hafedh Y, Allahverdiyev R, Amankwah E, Asah TS, Asfaw Z, Bartus G, Brooks AL, Caillaux J, Dalle G, Darnaedi D, Driver A, Erpul G, Escobar-Eyzaguirre P, Failler P, Fouda AMM, Fu B, Gundimeda H, Hashimoto S, Homer F, Lavorel S, Lichtenstein G, Mala WA, Mandivenyi W, Matczak P, Mbizvo C, Mehrdadi M, Metzger JP, Mikissa JB, Moller H, Mooney HA, Mumby P, Nagendra H, Nesshover C, Oteng-Yeboah AA, Pataki G, Roué M, Rubis J, Schultz M, Smith P, Sumaila R, Takeuchi K, Thomas S, Verma M, Yeo-Chang Y, Zlatanova D (2015) The IPBES conceptual framework: connecting nature and people. Curr Opin Environ Sustain 14:1–16CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. FAO: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Official homepage (2018). Accessed 20 June 2018
  11. Fitter AH (2013) Are ecosystem services replaceable by technology? Environ Resour Econ 55(4):513–524. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Goklany IM (2009) Technological substitution and augmentation of ecosystem services. In: Levin SA, Carpenter SR, Godfray HCJ, Kinzig AP, Loreau M, Losos JB, Walker B, Wilcove DS (eds) The princeton guide to ecology. Princeton University Press, Princeton, pp 659–669.
  13. Haaland C, van den Bosch CK (2015) Challenges and strategies for urban green-space planning in cities undergoing densification: a review. Urban For Urban Green 14(4):760–771. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Honey-Rosés J, Schneider DW, Brozović N (2014) Changing ecosystem service values following technological change. Environ Manage 53(6):1146–1157. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Huckauf A (2008) Biodiversity conservation and the extinction of experience. In: Dengler J, Dolnik C, Trepel M (eds) Flora, vegetation and nature conservation from Schleswig–Holstein to South America–festschrift for Klaus Dierßen on occasion of his 60th birthday. Mitt. Arbeitsgem. Geobot. Schleswig-Holstein Hamb, vol 65, pp 329–344Google Scholar
  16. ICEM: International Centre for Environmental Management (2010) MRC strategic environmental assessment of hydropower on the Mekong mainstream, Summary of the final report. Accessed 26 Sept 2018
  17. IPBES: The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (2016) The methodological assessment report on scenarios and models of biodiversity and ecosystem services. Accessed 20 June 2018
  18. Jamieson D (1998) Sustainability and beyond. Ecol Econ 24(2–3):183–192CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Japan Biodiversity Outlook Science Committee (2015) Report of comprehensive assessment of biodiversity and ecosystem services in Japan (Japan Biodiversity Outlook 2). Global Biodiversity Strategy Office, Biodiversity Policy Division, Nature Conservation Bureau, Ministry of the Environment, Japan, TokyoGoogle Scholar
  20. JSSA: Japan Satoyama Satoumi assessment (2010) Satoyama-Satoumi ecosystems and human well-being, socio-ecological production landscapes of Japan, Summary for Decision Makers. Accessed 20 June 2018
  21. Kearney AT (2017) Global cities 2017: leaders in a world of disruptive innovation. Accessed 20 June 2018
  22. Kowalski K, Stagl S, Madlener R, Omann I (2009) Sustainable energy futures: methodological challenges in combining scenarios and participatory multi-criteria analysis. Eur J Oper Res 197:1063–1074CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. MA: Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2005) Ecosystem and human well-being: synthesis. Island Press, Washington DCGoogle Scholar
  24. Miki A, Nakatani J, Hirao M (2010) Scenario analysis of drinking water usage applying life-cycle assessment for consumers. Environ Sci 23(6):447–458Google Scholar
  25. Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (2014) Report of Study Group on Future Communities in Urban Areas. Accessed 20 June 2018
  26. Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, 100 Cases of Regional Revitalization by ICT. Accessed 10 Aug 2018
  27. Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (2012) White Paper on Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in Japan, 2013. Accessed 20 June 2018
  28. Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (2018) Comparison of function accumulation situation in each metropolitan area central area of metropolis, a material of Advisory Committee for Land to Earn. Accessed 20 June 2018
  29. Nanao city (2016) Present State of Environment of Nanao city. Accessed 20 June 2018
  30. Nerima city office (2018) Productive green zone. Accessed 24 Aug 2018
  31. Neumayer E (2003) Weak versus strong sustainability: exploring the limits of two opposing paradigms. Edward Elgar Publishing, CheltenhamGoogle Scholar
  32. Oteros-Rozas E, Martín-López B, Daw TM, Bohensky EL, Butler JRA, Hill R, Martin-Ortega J, Quinlan A, Ravera F, Ruiz-Mallén I, Thyresson M, Mistry J, Palomo I, Peterson GD, Plieninger T, Waylen KA, Beach DM, Bohnet IC, Hamann M, Hanspach J, Hubacek K, Lavorel S, Vilardy SP (2015) Participatory scenario planning in place-based social-ecological research: insights and experiences from 23 case studies. Ecol Soc 20(4):32CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. PANCES (2017) Official homepage. Accessed 20 June 2018
  34. Saito O, Kamiyama C (2015) Future scenarios and governance-evaluation of ecosystem and future scenario analysis in the Asia-Pacific region. In: Symposium of Society of Environmental Science, Japan, pp 12Google Scholar
  35. Saito O, Kamiyama C, Hashimoto S, Matsui T, Shoyama K, Kabaya K, Uetake T, Taki H, Ishikawa Y, Matsushita K, Yamane F, Hori J, Ariga T, Takeuchi K (2018) Co-design of national-scale future scenarios in japan to predict and assess natural capital and ecosystem services. Sustain Sci. Google Scholar
  36. Schaubroeck T (2018) Towards a general sustainability assessment of human/industrial and nature-based solutions. Sustain Sci 13:1185–1191. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (2002) Brochure on ‘Traditional Knowledge and the Convention on Biological Diversity’. Accessed 8 Aug 2018
  38. Simaika JP, Samways MJ (2010) Biophilia as a universal ethic for conserving biodiversity. Conserv Biol 24(3):903–906. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Specht K, Siebert R, Hartmann I, Freisinger UB, Sawicka M, Werner A, Thomaier S, Henckel D, Walk H, Dierich A (2014) Urban agriculture of the future: an overview of sustainability aspects of food production in and on buildings. Agric Hum Values 31:33–51. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Tanaka T, Iwamoto S, Nishina D (2014) A study on the preferable urban structure of provincial small town in the depopulation tendency. J Environ Eng AIJ 79(697):286–296Google Scholar
  41. Uk NEA (2011) The UK National Ecosystem Assessment: synthesis of the key findings. UNEPWCMC, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  42. Van Vuuren DP, Kok MTJ, Girod B, Lucas PL, De Vries B (2012) Scenarios in global environmental assessments: key characteristics and lessons for future use. Glob Environ Change 22(4):884–895CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Wells NM, Lekies KS (2006) Nature and the life course: pathways from childhood nature experiences to adult environmentalism. Child Youth Environ 16(1):1–24Google Scholar
  44. Wilson EO (1984) Biophilia. Harvard University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Japan KK, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study of SustainabilityTokyoJapan

Personalised recommendations