Ecosystem services and poverty alleviation: assessing the constraints and opportunities

Martin, Adrian ORCID:, Blowers, Andrew and Boersema, Jan (2010) Ecosystem services and poverty alleviation: assessing the constraints and opportunities. Journal of Integrative Environmental Sciences, 7 (2). pp. 99-104. ISSN 1943-815X

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The ways in which human relationships with nature are framed are in part a product of the social conditions of the day (Glacken 1967). We have mentioned in previous editorials that these conditions can also influence society's receptivity to scientific agendas and it should perhaps be no surprise then that essentially market-based conceptualizations of human connections to nature have flourished in recent decades. Some argue that the Ecosystem Services (ES) scientific framework, as popularized through the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA 2005) is itself a hybrid of scientific synthesis and political context. Norgaard (2010) goes further than most in arguing that its central scientific axioms are supported by neither state of the art ecological nor social sciences, and are bolstered by blind faith in market mechanisms. Despite such criticism, the ES framework has in a fairly short period of time become heavily used as a means of supporting market-based approaches to conservation and development. Because of this influence, it is timely to ask questions about how useful the framework currently is and what research agendas can contribute to improvement. In doing so we raise some weighty concerns about current knowledge of ES and these cautionary words are in part aimed at those implementing large ES-based programs such REDD, and suggestive of a research agenda that needs to accompany and support this and future ES initiatives.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: sdg 1 - no poverty ,/dk/atira/pure/sustainabledevelopmentgoals/no_poverty
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of International Development
University of East Anglia Research Groups/Centres > Theme - ClimateUEA
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Social Sciences > Research Groups > Global Environmental Justice
University of East Anglia Schools > Faculty of Science > Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research
Faculty of Science > Research Centres > Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research
Depositing User: Adrian Martin
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2012 16:55
Last Modified: 15 Jun 2023 23:47
DOI: 10.1080/1943815X.2010.485441

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