Evaluating, mapping and quantifying the social value of ecosystem services, study of Qeshm Geopark

Document Type : Research Paper


Department of Environment, Faculty of Natural Resources. University of Tehran, Karaj, Iran



Based on complexity in the socio-ecologic dynamic systems, and due to increasing human pressure on ecosystems, integrated approaches using social indicators of ecosystem services are valuable to evaluate ecosystem services. This issue becomes more important in Qeshm Island as one of the important tourist destinations of the country, the nominated Glopbal Geoparks by UNESCO and existing of some vulnerable natural ecosystems such as mangrove forest. In this study, using the social value of ecosystem services (SolVES) model, twelve social values ​​of Qeshm Island were mapped. The use of questionnaire and participatory evaluation methods combined with mapping of ecosystem services led to the integrated approach based on social values assessment of ecosystem services. In this regard, objective and subjective indicators have been used quantitatively and qualitatively. The indicators of social value of ecosystem services were first evaluated qualitatively in the form of a questionnaire and then quantitatively in the form of zoning performed in SolVES software. The results showed that the integration of spatial and social ecosystem services data and zoning of different intensities of value based on people's understanding of the social values of Qeshm Geopark's ecosystem services can effectively improve the process of spatial planning. Combining social values of ecosystem services with territorial data can lead to the integration of public understanding of social values among different stakeholders. It can prioritize places with attractions and social values of ecosystem services.


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