Stocks and Flows

Scale dependence of stocks and flows in the valuation of ecosystem services

Nature is essential in making human life possible and pleasurable. People have a role both as consumers of the goods that nature provides, and as managers of the natural environment that provides those goods.

This project focused on creating a framework to describe how human interactions with stocks and flows of natural capital underpin the provision of ecosystem goods and services from farmland. Farmed land is a key part of the UK landscape, providing a range of goods and services in addition to food production, including flood regulation and recreation.

The project worked with farmers and policy makers to explore the range of goods and services provided by farmland and the role of people in their provision and consumption. The project also looked at how services operate at different scales, and whether it is possible to compare across scales.

End of project summary poster



  1. Explore how flows of supporting, intermediate and final ecosystem services are dependent on stocks of natural and other forms of capital; identifying possible metrics by which they can be measured.
  2. Identify the importance of scale and scale transitions for quantification, valuation and management of stocks and flows.
  3. Develop an encompassing conceptual framework for quantifying and valuing stocks with regard to flows.
  4. Identify knowledge gaps and set priorities for a follow-on research agenda.


Read the final report here

Outputs included:

  • an interdisciplinary network with the capacity and identified approaches (a specified research agenda) to take on the valuation of biodiversity, ecosystems services and natural resource use
  • a paper submitted to a peer-reviewed journal describing the conceptual framework.
  • a final poster


The team

Principal Leader

Dr Laurence JonesCentre for Ecology and Hydrology Bangor


Dr. Lisa Norton - Centre for Ecology and Hydrology
Mr Will Manley - Royal Agricultural College
Dr Carly Stevens - The Open University
Dr Gavin Siriwardena - British Trust for Ornithology
Dr. Jonathan Storkey - Rothamsted Research
Dr Julia PG Jones - Bangor University
Dr Carol Morris - University of Nottingham
Professor Iain Fraser - University of Kent
Professor K Balcombe - University of Reading
Mr Christopher Short - University of Gloucestershire
Dr Alison L Browne - Lancaster University
Zbigniew J. Grabowski - Pure Interactions UK
Dr David C Howard - Centre for Ecology and Hydrology
Dr. David A. Robinson - Centre for Ecology and Hydrology
Dr. Rebecca Ellis - Lancaster University