Through a series of seminars, laboratory sessions and a 3.5 days fieldtrip, this course will introduce students into the concepts of ecosystem services (ES), with a particular focus on their relevance for agriculture and other land uses. The course aims to foster the ability of students to assume an interdisciplinary research perspective by considering agro-ecosystems as social-ecological systems and by applying an integrative approach that combines multiple spatial scales (farm-scale, landscape-scale and regional-scale) and integrates biophysical, socio-cultural and economic approaches. The module is structured in three main blocks:
1- Introductory block:
In this section of the students will learn the main concepts around ecosystem services and their relevance for agroecosystems. After an introductory session on ES, each of the following sessions will focus on a different approach for mapping and assessing ES. In the last session the students will get familiar with the methods that will be used in the fieldtrip and prepare the tools and materials to carry it out.
2- Practical block (3.5 days fieldtrip)
This block consists on a 3.5 days fieldtrip to Burgstetten-Kirschenhardthof (Baden-Württemberg). During the fieldtrip students will learn and apply a combination of biophysical, socio-cultural and economic techniques for mapping and assessing ES at farm and landscape scales.
3- Analytical blockIn this part of the module the students will process and analyze the data collected in the fieldtrip. Each of the sessions will be focused in a specific analytical domain covering geospatial analysis, analysis of quantitative data and analysis of qualitative data.