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The diverse values of nature shape our interactions with nature: what are the values of ecologists and those of inhabitants of the tropics, and how do these playout in the way we undertanke research?

The way nature is valued is both a key driver of the current biodiversity crisis and an opportunity to address it. This is the main message emerging from the Values Assessment (VA) of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), involving 90 scientists from 50 countries over 4 years.

In this workshop we will share the main results of the IPBES VA and will reflect on the role of ecologists (and scientists in general) in addressing the biodiversity crisis.

The IPBES VA has developed a novel typology of the diverse values of nature to guide decisions and assessed current valuation efforts and tools. It has shown the limited uptake of valuation into decisions and the opportunities to address this gap, including the institutional changes needed. It has shown the importance of shifting away from predominant values that currently over-emphasize short term and individual material gains and rather nurturing sustainability-aligned values across society. The results are summarized into four values-based leverage points that can be activated to catalyze the transformative changes needed towards sustainable and just futures.

We will reflect, based on the field work experience of each of the participants, on how ecologists (and scientist in general) could play a key role in these transformative changes. We will draw an analogy with the values-centered leverage points to discuss how to recognize and weave the diverse types of knowledges and values about nature across social-ecological contexts. We will discuss what challenges remain for the transformation of academic institutions to better incorporate this diversity into research, teaching, and action. We will explore what shifts in personal and collective values of scientists and science are entailed.


The diverse values of nature: why should ecologists care?

6th July 2023. 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM (9)

Patricia Balvanera (Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico)

Open to all



Maximum number of participants



The diverse values of nature: why should ecologists care?
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