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See detailHow can Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services help understanding and steering agroecological transitions?
Dendoncker, Nicolas; Boeraeve, Fanny; Crouzat, Emilie et al

in Ecology and Society (2018), 23(1), 12

Agroecology has been proposed as a promising concept to foster the resilience and sustainability of agroecosystems and rural territories. Agroecological practices are based on optimizing ecosystem ... [more ▼]

Agroecology has been proposed as a promising concept to foster the resilience and sustainability of agroecosystems and rural territories. Agroecological practices are based on optimizing ecosystem services (ES) at the landscape, farm, and parcel scales. Recent progress in research on designing agroecological transitions highlights the necessity for coconstructed processes that draw on various sources of knowledge based on shared concepts. But despite the sense of urgency linked to agroecological transitions, feedbacks from real-world implementation remain patchy. The ability of integrated and participatory ES assessments to support this transition remains largely underexplored, although their potential to enhance learning processes and to build a shared territorial perspective is widely recognized. The overarching question that will be asked in this paper is thus: what is the potential of the ES framework to support the understanding and steering of agroecological transitions? We argue that conducting collaborative and integrated assessments of ES bundles can (i) increase our understanding of the ecological and social drivers that support a transition toward agroecological systems, and (ii) help design agroecological systems based on ES delivery and effectively accompany transition management based on shared knowledge, codesigned future objectives, and actual on-the-ground implementation. In this paper, we discuss this question and propose a four-step integrated ES assessment framework specifically targeted at understanding and steering agricultural transitions that is generic enough to be applied in different contexts. [less ▲]

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See detailThree necessary conditions for establishing effective Sustainable Development Goals in the Anthropocene
Norström, Albert et al.; Kyriakopoulou, Efthymia UL

in Ecology and Society (2014), 19(3),

The purpose of the United Nations-guided process to establish Sustainable Development Goals is to galvanize governments and civil society to rise to the interlinked environmental, societal, and economic ... [more ▼]

The purpose of the United Nations-guided process to establish Sustainable Development Goals is to galvanize governments and civil society to rise to the interlinked environmental, societal, and economic challenges we face in the Anthropocene. We argue that the process of setting Sustainable Development Goals should take three key aspects into consideration. First, it should embrace an integrated social-ecological system perspective and acknowledge the key dynamics that such systems entail, including the role of ecosystems in sustaining human wellbeing, multiple cross-scale interactions, and uncertain thresholds. Second, the process needs to address trade-offs between the ambition of goals and the feasibility in reaching them, recognizing biophysical, social, and political constraints. Third, the goal-setting exercise and the management of goal implementation need to be guided by existing knowledge about the principles, dynamics, and constraints of social change processes at all scales, from the individual to the global. Combining these three aspects will increase the chances of establishing and achieving effective Sustainable Development Goals. [less ▲]

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