Population diversity and ecosystem services

Gary Luck, Gretchen Daily, Paul Ehrlich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

406 Citations (Scopus)


The current rate of biodiversity loss threatens to disrupt greatly the functioning of ecosystems, with potentially significant consequences for humanity. The magnitude of the loss is generally measured with the use of species extinction rates, an approach that understates the severity of the problem and masks some of its most important consequences. Here, we propose a major expansion of this focus to include population diversity: considering changes in the size, number, distribution and genetic composition of populations and the implications of those changes for the functioning of ecosystems and the provision of ecosystem services. We also outline the key components of population diversity and describe a new approach to delineating a population unit that explicitly links it to the services that it provides
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)331-336
Number of pages6
JournalTrends in Ecology and Evolution
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2003


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