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Our research has explored mechanisms for delivering tree and forest ecosystem services and examined land managers’ perspectives in relation to mechanisms. For example:
1. In-depth interviews with 44 land managers identified important networks related to (1) place, (2) management and associated institutions and (3) social and personal identity. Land manager networks help learning and knowledge sharing and are important routes to generate interest and traction for changes or new initiatives affecting forestry.
2. These interviews showed that many land managers are not familiar with the term ecosystem services or the concept of payments for ecosystem services. However, they do often recognise that their woodlands could provide a range of benefits to society.
3. An EU-funded research network (PESFOR-W) is currently gathering evidence on woodlands for water payment for ecosystem services schemes across its 40 member countries. This will include online publication of case study fact sheets. Examples include the creation of ‘Water Forests’ in Denmark for protection of drinking water quality – partly funded by also providing timber and recreation benefits. Another example is the payments for a range of benefits of planting trees in Italy, including increased infiltration for groundwater recharge.
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