Perspective on the future of nature in Europe : impacts and combinations

Anne Gerdien Prins, Rogier Pouwels, Jan Clement, Marjon Hendriks, Bart de Knegt, Katalin Petz, Arthur Beusen, Hans Farjon, Arjen van Hinsberg, Jan Janse, Onno Knol, Peter van Puijenbroek, Mart Jan Schelhaas, Sandy van Tol

Research output: Book/ReportReportProfessional


Halting biodiversity loss and restoring ecosystems in the EU requires substantial action, in addition to measures currently implemented under the Birds and Habitats Directives. A closer connection between societal preferences and nature policy may enhance people’s engagement in nature-related efforts. However, people all have their own view on nature. In PBL’s Nature Outlook study, four ‘perspectives’ on nature in 2050 were explored to capture these differing views (Dammers et al., 2017; Van Zeijts et al., 2017). The perspectives cover a range of guiding values, expressing how people relate to nature and what interventions they would prefer to improve nature conservation. In this report, these interventions have been translated to a resulting state of the landscape regarding land use, land management and environmental conditions at the EU scale, in order to study their impact on biodiversity and ecosystem services in 2050. Moreover, potential synergies and conflicts between the various perspectives provide insight for policymakers into the possibilities for including various views on nature in policy-making, and may help set an agenda for nature policies beyond 2020. The four perspectives explored are: Strengthening Cultural Identity, in which people feel connected with nature and the landscape, and consider this an integral part of their local and regional communities and as essential to a fulfilling life; Allowing Nature to find its Way, in which people feel strongly about the great intrinsic value of nature, where nature is defined by dynamic processes and should be left to its own devices; Going with the Economic Flow, in which nature suits people’s lifestyles, and businesses and citizens take the initiative in nature development; Working with Nature, in which people try to use natural processes and strive for optimal, long-term delivery of ecosystem services, for the benefit of both society and the economy.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationThe Hague
PublisherPBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency
Number of pages117
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

NamePBL publication

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