Linkages between ecosystem services and human wellbeing: A Nexus Webs approach

Zoe Leviston, Iain Walker, Melissa Green, Jennifer Price

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)


Ecosystems provide benefits to people, and, in turn, people individually and collectively affect the functioning and wellbeing of ecosystems. Interdependencies between ecosystem services and human wellbeing are critical for the sustainable future of ecosystems and human systems alike, but they are not well understood. We offer an account of these interdependencies from the perspective of social psychology. Using the Nexus Webs framework (Overton et al., 2013), we explore how a fuller knowledge of coupled social-ecological systems will benefit resource management and decision-making in contested spaces. We challenge the tacit notion that ecosystem health and human wellbeing are linearly related, and suggest human wellbeing may affect ecosystem health. We outline the multiple construals of the construct ‘wellbeing’, and identify additional psychological constructs of importance. We examine how the benefits of ecosystems for human wellbeing may accrue differently across regions and across people. Four areas for future research are identified.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)658-668
Number of pages11
JournalEcological Indicators
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018
Externally publishedYes


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