Core Concept: Ecosystem Services

Short Description

Studies on how humans rely on natural surroundings for survival began in the 1980s, and this relationship with natural surroundings is known by the term "ecosystem services". Ecosystem services include water purification, pest control, storm buffers, and other services that increase human quality of life and benefit society. Recognizing the practicality of ecosystems and valuing them in dollars helps social scientists quantify their necessity. This information is then used to adjust and shape policy decisions.

Related Partners

The Fish and Wildlife Service works with others to manage and monitor the conservation of wildlife habitats throughout the United States. This includes the direct management of the National Wildlife Refuge System for the wellfare of all American people, and using social science in the decision making process and utilization of management plans.

Suggested Citation

Amy West, ​Core Concept: Ecosystem services.