Conserving biodiversity

© Gustavo Ybarra / WWF

Biodiversity and ecosystem services

The world’s natural capital is dwindling: biodiversity levels are declining and ecosystems are being degraded at an alarming rate. Ecosystem biodiversity is a prerequisite for the provisioning of ecosystem services, and contributes to their continuous delivery and resilience. This is especially the case when an ecosystem is under stress. A lack of adequate knowledge on the contribution of biodiversity to the functioning of ecosystem services leaves the sustainable management of ecosystems and the future provision of goods and services under threat.

Patterns and pressures

The Academy focuses on different aspects of biodiversity conservation, including the patterns of biodiversity, the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, and the sustainable management of ecosystems. In our research we take ecosystem functioning and biodiversity patterns into account when investigating important pressures such as climate change and land use. In this way our research facilitates biodiversity conservation and the sustainable management of ecosystems, helping to guarantee the future provisioning of ecosystem goods and services.

How do species respond to climate change and how does this affect community structure, ecosystem functioning and the services these ecosystems provide?