Forum of Experts in SEEA Experimental Ecosystem Accounting

Forum of Experts in SEEA EEA

The Forum of Experts in SEEA Experimental Ecosystem Accounting (SEEA EEA) will be held on 18-20 June 2018 at the Glen Cove Mansion Hotel & Conference Center, Glen Cove, Long Island, New York. The Forum is organized by the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD) in collaboration with the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment), the World Bank, and the European Union through the project “Natural Capital Accounting and Valuation of Ecosystem Services.”

Participants will include statisticians, researchers and experts in the area of ecosystem accounting, ecosystem modelling, spatial analysis of ecosystem services, and environmental and ecological economics, as well as earth observation specialists. Representatives of the project partner countries, namely Brazil, China, India, Mexico and South Africa, and other countries having experience in the compilation of ecosystem accounting would also be in attendance.

The Forum’s objectives are to:

  • Share best-practices in compiling ecosystem accouts;
  • Showcase methodological and technical advances;
  • Work towards a consensus on methods and practices to be included in practical guidelines;
  • Provide recommendations for the revision of the SEEA EEA.



Concept note

Logistics note

Final agenda

List of participants

Forum report



Area 1: Spatial Units

Area 2: Ecosystem Condition

Area 3: Ecosystem Services

Area 4: Valuation (3 papers)

  1. overview paper
  2. paper on valuation method selection criteria for Session 4 (breakout 1)
  3. list of key ecosystem services from valuation perspective for Session 12 (breakout 3)



Monday, 18 June 2018


Session 1: Opening of the Forum of Experts

Opening address by Elliott Harris, Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development and Chief Economist, United Nations

Opening video messages by:

Opening message delivered on behalf of Ms. Inger Andersen, Director General of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)


Session 2: Background and context for the SEEA EEA revision


Session 3: Overview of the revision issues

Introduction to the revision issues


Session 4: Breakout session #1
Area #1: Spatial units 

Area #2: Ecosystem condition

Area #3: Ecosystem services 

Area #4: Valuation


Session 5: Data and tools for ecosystem accounting


Tuesday, 19 June 2018


Session 8: Breakout session #2 – Ecosystem types

Group #1: Forests 

Group #2: Agricultural land 

Group #3: Freshwater ecosystems including wetlands 

Group #4: Marine and coastal ecosystems 

Group #5: Urban ecosystems 


Session 9: Indicators and SEEA EEA


Session 10: Integration of ecosystem valuation


Session 12: Breakout session #3


Area #1: Spatial units

Area #2: Ecosystem condition

Area #3: Ecosystem services 

Area #4: Valuation 


Session 13: Country experiences


Session 15: Data and tools for ecosystem accounting


Wednesday, 20 June 2018


Session 16: Breakout session #4 – Cross-cutting issues 
Group #1: Establishing classes for ecosystem types – is there a minimum number of classes to support measurement and decision support?

Group #2: Describing the set of key ecosystem services for modelling and valuation 

Group #3: Approaches to aggregation for measures of ecosystem condition and ecosystem services

Group #4: Linking the measurement of ecosystem services and ecosystem condition –options for defining capacity for ecosystem accounting 

Group #5: Integrated accounting treatments and recording degradation for ecosystem accounting 


Session 17: Organizing data for ecosystem accounting


Session 20: Moving forward

Event Date

Monday, 18 June 2018 - 9:00am to Wednesday, 20 June 2018 - 5:00pm


Below are reference materials useful for the discussions at the Forum.


SEEA 2012--Experimental Ecosystem Accounting

- Technical Recommendations in support of SEEA EEA

- SEEA EEA Revision 2020 - Revision Issues Note

Ecosystem types

- IUCN Habitats Classification Scheme

A New Map of Global Ecological Land Units – An Ecophysiographic Stratification Approach

A New Map of Global Ecological Marine Units – An Environmental Stratification Approach

Ecosystem condition

- 5th MAES report on ecosystem condition. 

Compiling biodiversity accounts with the GLOBIO model. 

Ecosystem services

Haines-Young R., Potschin M. 2018. Common International Classification of Ecosystem Services (CICES) V5.1. 

Haines-Young R, Potschin-Young M (2018) Revision of the Common International Classification for Ecosystem Services (CICES V5.1): A Policy Brief. 

- UN et al., 2016. Expert group meeting – Towards a Standard International Classification on Ecosystem Services 20-21 June 2016.

- Walker, B. H., J. M. Anderies, A. P. Kinzig, and P. Ryan. 2006. Exploring resilience in social-ecological systems through comparative studies and theory development: introduction to the special issue. Ecology and Society11(1): 12. 

- Landers DH and Nahlik AM. 2013. Final Ecosystem Goods and Services Classification System (FEGS-CS). EPA/600/R-13/ORD-004914. 

United States Environmental Protection Agency. 2015. National Ecosystem Services Classification System (NESCS): Framework Design and Policy Application. EPA-800-R-15-002. United States Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC. 

Vision, Structure, Scope, and Applicability of the National Ecosystem Services Classification System (NESCS) UNSD Expert Group Meeting Towards a standard international classification on ecosystem services. June 2016.


- Presentations from the Habitats Classification Expert Meeting on Ecosystem Valuation in the context of Natural Capital Accounting, Bonn, 24-26 April 2018. 

The valuation of ecosystem services and assets for SEEA ecosystem accounting, background paper

Other reference materials provided by participants

Maynard, Simone & James, David & Davidson, Andrew. (2010). The Development of an Ecosystem Services Framework for South East Queensland. Environmental management. 45. 881-95.

S. Maynard, D. James, A. Davidsonn (2015). Determining the value of multiple ecosystem services in terms of community wellbeing: Who should be the valuing agent? Ecological Economics, Volume 115, Pages 22-28.

- Petter, Mik & Mooney, Shannon & Maynard, Simone & Davidson, Andrew & Cox, Melanie & Horosak, Ila. (2013). A Methodology to Map Ecosystem Functions to Support Ecosystem Services Assessments. ECOLOGY AND SOCIETY.


SEEA Ecosystem Accounting and the Global Biodiversity Agenda