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Journal Article

Socio-ecological monitoring of biodiversity change


Lotze-Campen,  Hermann
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;


Reußwig,  Fritz
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;

Stoll-Kleemann,  Susanne
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Lotze-Campen, H., Reußwig, F., Stoll-Kleemann, S. (2008): Socio-ecological monitoring of biodiversity change. - GAIA – Ecological Perspectives for Science and Society, 17, S1, 107-115.

Cite as: https://publications.pik-potsdam.de/pubman/item/item_14553
We discuss biodiversity loss as a problem of social perception and environmental management. Apart from the problems with defining and measuring biodiversity, the impacts of biodiversity loss on human well-being and lifestyles are difficult to assess, and the value of biodiversity conservation is difficult to measure. The biodiversity discourse is still dominated by the natural sciences, whereas little attention has been paid to the social dimensions and the social embedding of biodiversity conservation. This results in biodiversity-related conflicts and bad environmental management. As a basis for improved management of biodiversity as a global, yet locally nested common good, we define the requirements for an integrated socio-ecological monitoring system, a "Sustainability Geoscope". Through a large set of comparative, interdisciplinary regional case studies a new quality of data integration and coverage at various spatial scales could be achieved. We propose to choose the World Network of Biosphere Reserves as an infrastructure of monitoring sites and discuss how such a Geoscope could be implemented and related to existing initiatives.