Beatty, C., L. Raes, A.L. Vogl, P.L. Hawthorne, M. Moraes, J.L. Saborio and K. Meza Prado
The Restoration Opportunities Optimization Tool (ROOT) was developed out of a need to more efficiently and effectively communicate the importance of ecosystem services to decision makers. IUCN’s collective experience working to increase ecological productivity and improve human well-being through forest landscape restoration (FLR) demonstrated that although stakeholders were interested in generating ecosystem services from proposed restoration activities, the many services and their interactions with each other were often too complicated to communicate clearly. Furthermore, as a social process, decision makers working towards restoration were interested in more than just the biophysical gains from restoration for different services; they wanted evidence for how restoration might benefit agricultural production, access to jobs or different sources of income, and how investments in restoration might help underserved or marginalized groups. The case studies in this report were chosen based on ongoing FLR assessments as well as the existence of ecosystem services data, and are intended to demonstrate the applicability of ROOT to both technical and non-technical audiences.