A global map of the functionality of terrestrial ecosystems

Geographical coverage

Geographical scale of the assessment Global
Country or countries covered
Any other necessary information or explanation for identifying the location of the assessment, including site or region name

Conceptual framework, methodology and scope

Assessment objectives

  • Ecosystem functionality is the basis of ecosystem service provisioning and adaptation to climate change.
  • It depends on characteristics such as biodiversity, heterogeneity, biomass and evolutionary potential.
  • An index for ecosystem functionality (EFI) is presented.
  • Highest EFI values are centered in tropical and also extratropical forest regions.

Mandate for the assessment

  • Ecosystem functionality is the basis of ecosystem service provisioning and adaptation to climate change.
  • The Ecosystem Functionality Index (EFI) provides a strong basis for an ecosystem-based conservation priority setting and climate change adaptation.

Conceptual framework and/or methodology used for the assessment

Other (please specify)

indicator based index

URL or copy of conceptual framework developed or adapted


System(s) assessed

  • Forest and woodland
  • Cultivated/Agricultural land
  • Grassland
  • Mountain
  • Dryland
  • Polar
  • Urban

Species groups assessed

Ecosystem services/functions assessed



Supporting Services/Functions

  • Ecosystem Functionality

Cultural Services

Scope of assessment includes

Drivers of change in systems and services


Impacts of change in services on human well-being


Options for responding/interventions to the trends observed


Explicit consideration of the role of biodiversity in the systems and services covered by the assessment


Timing of the assessment

Year assessment started

Year assessment finished

If ongoing, year assessment is anticipated to finish

Periodicity of assessment

Assessment outputs


Communication materials (e.g. brochure, presentations, posters, audio-visual media)

Journal publications

Training materials

Other documents/outputs

Tools and processes

Tools and approaches used in the assessment

  • Trade-off analysis
  • Indicators

Process used for stakeholder engagement in the assessment process and which component

Key stakeholder groups engaged

The number of people directly involved in the assessment process

Incorporation of scientific and other types of knowledge

Supporting documentation for specific approaches, methodology or criteria developed and/or used to integrate knowledge systems into the assessment

Assessment reports peer reviewed



Accessibility of data used in assessment

partly open, partly upon request from other assessments

Policy impact

Impacts the assessment has had on policy and/or decision making, as evidenced through policy references and actions

Independent or other review on policy impact of the assessment


Lessons learnt for future assessments from these reviews

Capacity building

Capacity building needs identified during the assessment

Actions taken by the assessment to build capacity

How have gaps in capacity been communicated to the different stakeholders

Knowledge generation

Gaps in knowledge identified from the assessment

How gaps in knowledge have been communicated to the different stakeholders

Additional relevant information