The Research Unit RU 816: Overall Approach in the Light of the Ecosystem Services Concept

  • Jan Barkmann
  • Boris M. Hillmann
  • Rainer Marggraf
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 221)


The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MEA) provides a widely accepted definition of ecosystem services. It focuses on the benefits that humans obtain from ecological systems including the ecologically fundamental supporting services. The focus on human benefits facilitates the application environmental valuation and decision making on issues of biodiversity conservation in the project area of our Research Unit 816 (RU). The more indirectly an ecosystem state, structure or process relates to the human sphere, the more careful consideration must be given to the question whether the ecological phenomenon at hand does in fact provide benefits to humans or not. Against this background, the ecosystem service concept and its application in the RU 816 are explained, and an empirical example for the economic valuation of locally relevant ecosystem services is given.


Ecosystem Service Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Main Research Question Sustainable Land Management Cultural Ecosystem Service 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Barkmann
    • 1
  • Boris M. Hillmann
    • 1
  • Rainer Marggraf
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, Environmental and Resource EconomicsGeorg-August-Universität GöttingenGöttingenGermany

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