Research

Mountain biodiversity and human wellbeing

Background and methods

This is a first comparative assessment of the state and trends in biodiversity, ecosystem services, human wellbeing, and their direct drivers in the mountains of the world. It relies on two sources of data: an online survey and a literature review. We aim at collecting data on as many of the >1000 mountain ranges included in the GMBA mountain inventory V1.0 as possible. To achieve this goal, we have reached out to the entirety of the GMBA network and beyond through partner networks and programs.

Data collection broadly follows the conceptual framework of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES, Diaz et al. 2015), which efficiently unpacks biodiversity, ecosystem services, human wellbeing, indirect and direct drivers, and their interrelations. Each of these components will be analyzed for its state and trend. Differences between mountain ranges will be analyzed according to the three following guiding questions:

  • which geographic, cultural, social, economic, and biological factors promote tight biodiversity-human well-being relations in mountains?
  • what are opportunities for decision-making toward sustainable mountain development and how do these opportunities differ between mountain ranges varying in their geography, biology, and cultural, social, as well as economic context?
  • what would be the consequences of inaction for sustainable mountain development and how do these consequences differ between mountain ranges varying in their geography, biology, and cultural, social, and economic context?