December 2019 - Finding ways to value Ecosystem Services - a Participatory Workshop in Helsinki

In early December, a group of experts from various fields gathered to a stakeholder event organized by MARES in Finland. 

Altogether twenty ecologists and economists dived into a cross-disciplinary brainstorming session aiming to find common understanding and ways for valuating ecosystem services. The challenge is that the two disciplines work with different scales and for different purposes. Ecologists look at complexity - economists need simplification.

However, for evidence-based for policy making, information exchange between science and policy is crucial.The online Geo-Spatial web portal, which MARES has been constructing, will display and visualize information on Baltic Sea ecosystem services, revealing also knowledge gaps that need further attention. This will be further elaborated in the upcoming workshop in Helsinki in February 2020. 

Find more information on the Newsletter vol 2. 

Group of participants



August 2018 -  MARES presented in the European Marine Biology Symposium EMBS

MARES project and the results of the meta-analysis were presented in a poster session at the 54th European Marine Biology Symposium held in 25-29 August in Dublin.

Poster prepared by Anneliis Peterson and Melanie Heckwolf concluded that based on the extensive systematic literature review, there are huge knowledge gaps in quantification and mapping of ecosystem services in the Baltic Sea. More information is also needed on the applicability of monetary and non-monetary valuation methods.


Researchers Anneliis Peterson, Jonne Kotta and Helen Orav-Kotta presenting the results of the meta-analysis at the EMBS in Dublin.



June 2019 -  Meeting in Kiel 

At the end of June the MARES reserachers from Finland and Estonia joined the German partners in Kiel for the second joint meeting of the project. The GEOMAR folks had nicley planned the meeting on the time of the Kieler Woche - the Kiel Weeks, when the city is full of lively programme and - if possible -  more lively people.

Updates and preliminary results from the literature review were encouraging and planning the future focusing on the interactive GEO-portal inspiring. As an extra activity, the whole MARES group was interviewed for a research project of the SLU Sweden investigating participatory research projects and their stakeholder engagement for impactful knowledge. Interesting was also to see some seagrass research in action at the GEOMAR premises.

Early in the autumn MARES will reach out to external experts and stakeholders to bring their knowledge on board with an online questionnaire on ecosystem services and their valuation methods. This info will feed into the GEO-portal where enyone can access geographic and graphically presented data on ecosystem services valuation  - this data will remain live in the portal after the project. More news here and in the Newsletter later in the autumn!



The MARES group had a nice chance to visit the GEOMAR's research vessel ALKOR - which is on the sea 2-3 weeks at a time. Due to the the Kieler Woche it was open to general public and participated in information dissemination on marine life and current reserach projects through small exhibitions. 



June 2019 - The First Newsletter is out! Check it out HERE 


March 2019 - As the first activity during winter 2018 - 2019, we have performed a scoping literature search in order to know how much literature exists on ecosystem services in the Baltic Sea area.

Based on this initial query, we established the major terms for full-scale systematic review and performed the full search. As much as 3089 papers were found on ecosystem services for shallow water communities provided by submerged vegetation, seagrass beds and mussel reefs. Currently we are analysing the papers, extracting and summarizing relevant data.