Landscape Ecology

, Volume 29, Issue 9, pp 1463–1479 | Cite as

Landscape services: the concept and its practical relevance

  • Olaf Bastian
  • Karsten Grunewald
  • Ralf-Uwe Syrbe
  • Ulrich Walz
  • Wolfgang Wende


Recently, in addition to the popular concept of “ecosystem services” (ES), the term “landscape services” (LS) has come into use. We are examining the question of whether a stronger focus on LS would be useful, particularly with regard to case studies carried out in Germany. Important reasons for introducing the term LS include the prominent role of spatial aspects, the reference to landscape elements and the landscape character, and the relevance of LS for landscape planning. We found no strong arguments for replacing the concept of ES by LS; however, we do prefer a situation-related use of both concepts. We propose the following definition: Landscape services are the contributions of landscapes and landscape elements to human well-being.


Landscape elements Landscape character Spatial reference units Landscape planning and management 



We thank the reviewers and the editor, Prof. J. Wu, for their helpful comments and comprehensive advices, but also Mr. Phil Hill, Berlin, for polishing the language.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Olaf Bastian
    • 1
  • Karsten Grunewald
    • 1
  • Ralf-Uwe Syrbe
    • 1
  • Ulrich Walz
    • 1
  • Wolfgang Wende
    • 1
  1. 1.Leibniz Institute of Ecological Urban and Regional DevelopmentDresdenGermany

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