Integrating multiple values of nature in environmental decisions and policy


Department Conservation Biology
(Prof. Dr. Kurt Jax)


The ways in which people relate to and value nature is an intriguing topic at the frontier of social sciences and ecological research. The ecosystem services concept has given an important impetus to highlighting the many ways by which nature contributes to human well-being. Intrinsic values and relational values are two prominent conceptualizations to reflect the non-instrumental value dimensions of nature. This objective of this UPOL project is to contribute to a better understanding of 1) the diversity of human-nature relationships and value dimensions, and 2) how the multiple values of nature are reflected in motivations and decisions of different societal actors (individuals, groups, institutions), and 3) how the multiple values of nature can be better accounted for in environmental policy and governance.

Within the ValuES Project, UFZ is working on operationalizing the IPBES multiple values framework for practitioners in national and sub-national development and conservation planning.


  • Rode, J., Le Menestrel, M., Cornelissen, G. (2017), Ecosystem service arguments enhance public support for environmental protection - but beware of the numbers!, Ecological Economics 141, 213-221.
  • Pascual, U., Balvanera, P., Díaz, S., Pataki, G., Roth, E., Wittmer, H. et al. (2017), Valuing nature’s contributions to people: the IPBES approach, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 26, 7-16.
  • Rode, J., Gómez-Baggethun, E., Krause, T. (2015), Motivation crowding by economic incentives in conservation policy: A review of the empirical evidence, Ecological Economics 117, 270-282.
  • Berghöfer, U., Rozzi, R., Jax, K. (2010), Many Eyes on Nature: Diverse Perspectives in the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve and Their Relevance for Conservation, Ecology and Society 15 (1), 18.
  • Berghöfer, U., Rozzi, R., Jax, K. (2008), Local versus global knowledge: diverse perspectives in the Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve. Environmental Ethics 30 (3), 273-294.