The evaluation of ecosystem services (ESs) usually refers to the capability of the ecosystems to offer benefits for humankind, and to the benefits that flow to the people, in terms of biophysical units or intangible values. The latter has great importance when assessing the attractiveness of a study area for cultural ESs, such as tourism and educational activities, usually resulting in attractiveness maps that depend on the features of the current landscape. Nevertheless, in some places, the presence of geomorphological peculiarities, fossils, and paleontological or paleoanthropological records enhances the attractiveness of the area, allowing the visitors to couple outdoor activities with cultural benefits. In such cases, the capacity for recreational ESs that is due to the presence of the contemporary ecosystem benefits from an “additional layer” of attractiveness, which depends on the ecosystems of the deep past. Moreover, the additional layer has a higher value the more interesting the records are, considering the mind-blowing uniqueness of the unlikely conditions through which the traces of the past ecosystem came to us, and the fascination exerted by different kinds of animals on human curiosity. In this talk, we propose a new “multi-temporal approach” to assess the attractiveness for cultural ESs. We present the first application in Northern Italy, achieved thanks to the collaboration between ecologists and paleontologists. The resulting GIS-based map might represent a tool that drives decision-makers when focusing on priorities for preservation, development, or promotion of a locality. Indeed, the improved map highlights where and why the contemporary presence of more than one factor of attractiveness occurs, adding criteria for thematic pathways and guided tours that offer both the restorativeness of a natural landscape and the knowledge of the history of the Earth. We discuss how, from an early researcher perspective, this novel multidisciplinary approach offers networking opportunities between ecologists and paleontologists, providing improvement in local ESs assessment and natural capital quantification.

Bringing together ecology and paleontology to assess multi-temporal Ecosystem Services: a new opportunity for young researchers?

Stocco Alice
;
Ghezzo Elena
2022

Abstract

The evaluation of ecosystem services (ESs) usually refers to the capability of the ecosystems to offer benefits for humankind, and to the benefits that flow to the people, in terms of biophysical units or intangible values. The latter has great importance when assessing the attractiveness of a study area for cultural ESs, such as tourism and educational activities, usually resulting in attractiveness maps that depend on the features of the current landscape. Nevertheless, in some places, the presence of geomorphological peculiarities, fossils, and paleontological or paleoanthropological records enhances the attractiveness of the area, allowing the visitors to couple outdoor activities with cultural benefits. In such cases, the capacity for recreational ESs that is due to the presence of the contemporary ecosystem benefits from an “additional layer” of attractiveness, which depends on the ecosystems of the deep past. Moreover, the additional layer has a higher value the more interesting the records are, considering the mind-blowing uniqueness of the unlikely conditions through which the traces of the past ecosystem came to us, and the fascination exerted by different kinds of animals on human curiosity. In this talk, we propose a new “multi-temporal approach” to assess the attractiveness for cultural ESs. We present the first application in Northern Italy, achieved thanks to the collaboration between ecologists and paleontologists. The resulting GIS-based map might represent a tool that drives decision-makers when focusing on priorities for preservation, development, or promotion of a locality. Indeed, the improved map highlights where and why the contemporary presence of more than one factor of attractiveness occurs, adding criteria for thematic pathways and guided tours that offer both the restorativeness of a natural landscape and the knowledge of the history of the Earth. We discuss how, from an early researcher perspective, this novel multidisciplinary approach offers networking opportunities between ecologists and paleontologists, providing improvement in local ESs assessment and natural capital quantification.
4th ESP Europe conference - Session "Novel contributions to Ecosystem Service research: from early career researchers perspectives"
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10278/5005826
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