Coordinated by Stockholm Resilience Center and funded by BiodivERsA, URBES is a major European focused project seeking to address scientific knowledge gaps on the contribution of urban biodiversity and ecosystem services to human well-being. It aims to support European cities to adapt to climate change and reduce their ecological footprints.

The study entails reviewing and expanding upon research on functional diversity, urban ecosystem services, institutions, economics and resilience science with a view to developing interdisciplinary and holistic principles, policies, tools and designs for application in cities. In the spirit of TEEB (The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity), URBES is advancing techniques for valuing ecosystem services in the urban context, exploring governance implications and developing guidelines for local governments.

Furthermore, URBES is developing a toolkit to better equip local governments in the management of biodiversity and ecosystem services. Empirical studies are being conducted in four European cities, namely, Berlin, Stockholm, Rotterdam and Salzburg. ICLEI and IUCN are closely collaborating to communicate and disseminate the research results and train local governments accordingly. The URBES Partners are also seeking to ensure linkages and coherence between URBES and important policy mechanisms and partnerships (CBD, IPBES, TEEB), as well as the EU Biodiversity Strategy.

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