Assessing the Impact of Farm-Management Practices on Ecosystem Services in European Agricultural Systems: A Rapid Evidence Assessment

Kato Van Ruymbeke*, Joana G. Ferreira, Vasileios D. Gkisakis, Jochen Kantelhardt, Gordana Manevska-Tasevska, Peter Matthews, Andreas Niedermayr, Lena Schaller, Katarzyna Bańkowska, Kewan Mertens, Liesbet Vranken

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
20 Downloads (Pure)


Many farm-management practices focus on maximizing production, while others better reconcile production with the regulation of ecological processes and sociocultural identity through the provisioning of ecosystem services (ESs). Though many studies have evaluated the performance of management practices against ES supply, these studies often focused on only a few practices simultaneously. Here, we incorporate 23 distinct management practices in a rapid evidence assessment to draw more comprehensive conclusions on their supply potential across 14 ESs in European agriculture. The results are visualized using performance indicators that quantify the ES-supply potential of a given management practice. In total, 172 indicators are calculated, among which cover crops are found to have the strongest positive impact on pollination-supply potential, while extensive livestock management is found to have the strongest negative impact for the supply potential for habitat creation/protection. The indicators also provide insight into the state of the peer-reviewed literature. At both the farm and territorial levels, the literature noticeably fails to evaluate cultural services. Further, disparities between the number of indicators composed at the farm and territorial levels indicate a systematic bias in the literature toward the assessment of smaller spatial levels.
Original languageEnglish
Article number12819
Issue number17
Early online date24 Aug 2023
Publication statusFirst published - 24 Aug 2023


  • ecosystem-services supply potential
  • farm-management practices
  • performance assessment
  • performance indicators
  • rapid evidence assessment


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