Start of the 2nd Funding Phase
The transdisciplinary joint project ValuGaps is being funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) as part of the BMBF Research Initiative for the Conservation of Biodiversity (FEdA) from 01.11.2021 to 31.10.2024 in a second funding phase.
The consortium can look back on a successfully completed first funding phase from 01.10.2020 to 30.09.2021. The following overarching results were achieved in this preliminary project phase: A dataset of ecosystem service values in Germany was created, as an extension of the TEEB database and with key parameters for scaling and the transfer of values (e.g. income elasticities). This preliminary database will now be further elaborated and published.
A common conceptual understanding of the value of natural capital was developed at the ValuGaps Kick-Off Workshop (26-27 January 2021) and in the preparation of a manuscript. The influence of descriptive facts and evaluative or prescriptive norms on valuation was clarified and ideas developed on how to validly determine each. The international workshop "Uncertainty and Distribution in Natural Capital Valuation" (28-29 June 2021) aimed at taking stock of the situation and first approaches on how to deal with key challenges for natural capital valuation as well as discussing the first ValuGaps results.
At the workshop "Closing gaps for the application of natural capital values" (26 March 2021), led by UBA, key stakeholders participated and presented their current and planned valuation practices for natural capital. Furthermore, they discussed which data, methods and information would be particularly helpful for improving the respective application practice.
It is expected that the ValuGaps results of Phase 2 will contribute significantly to anchoring the values of biodiversity and natural capital in Germany and beyond by using a high leverage point of intervention: governmental guidelines such as the UBA Methodological Convention. The broad application potential in Germany will be ensured through the participation of key actors in public administration and through the reference stakeholder network to be established in Phase 1.
There is also a wide range of potential applications outside Germany through contributions by the ValuGaps PIs to international science-policy interfaces, including IPBES assessments; the revision of the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting - Experimental Ecosystem Accounting, in which the BfN is involved; the Natural Capital Coalition, with UBA as a member.