Early adopters

The Early Adopters explore the generation of ecosystem accounts using Earth Observation in Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway and Slovakia.
They contribute to expressing their needs and to testing (validation and quality assessment) of innovative EO solutions into their operational practices to generate ecosystem accounts.

University of Patras (EL), through the Department of Biology, Laboratory of Botany, leads the MAES (Mapping and Assessment of Ecosystems and their Services) implementation in Greece and maintains natural capital accounting under several R&D projects. The team members have a strong track record also in policy and governance analysis suggesting future steps and possible solutions to conservation managers, decision- and policy- makers, while simultaneously highlight and communicate key issues to stakeholders and the general public, targeting to stimulate engagement and awareness-raising.

Italian National Institute of Statistics and National Institute for Environment Protection and Research (IT) in joint collaboration, have the mandate to monitor ecosystems at national level and producing ecosystem accounts. The team has a large experience in the use of biophysical models for land cover/use mapping, provisioning services and regulating services. They are both represented in the Eurostat Taskforce on ecosystem accounting and have already explored several options to generate ecosystem accounts at national and regional scale.

Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek (CBS) is the Dutch national statistical office. CBS is responsible for the independent publication of all national statistics, as well as a wide range of innovative statistics and statistical reports. In the department of National Accounts, the team of environmental accounts is responsible for the development of ecosystem accounts, consistent with international SEEA EA guidelines. CBS has worked on ecosystem accounting since 2015, and is also very active in international work on ecosystem accounting. CBS is represented in the Eurostat Taskforce on ecosystem accounting and has contributed substantially to the development of the SEEA EA guidelines. 

Statistics Norway (NO) is a professionally independent institution and the central authority for the development, production and dissemination of official statistics in Norway. Statistics Norway, one of few statistical agencies with a research department, also conducts extensive research and analysis activities and, through the EEA Agreement, is an integral part of the European Statistical System. Statistics Norway reports to the Ministry of Finance and is subject to the provisions of the Statistics Act. For some years, the institution has quite modestly experimented with earth observation data, mainly for monitoring land change and crop classification. Statistics Norway and the Norwegian Environment Agency collaborate closely on developing national ecosystem accounting. The Norwegian Environment Agency has the overall responsibility for all nature components of the ecosystem accounting, including coordinating the work on mapping ecosystem extent and evaluating ecosystem condition.

Institute of Landscape Ecology of the Slovak Academy of Sciences (SK) is an interdisciplinary scientific institution for basic and applied research in landscape ecology. It is a governmental research organization that is a part of the Slovak Academy of Sciences. The current research focus is mainly on developing novel satellite-based products for landscape monitoring, land change detection, early season crop classification, detection of grassland management and vegetation status assessment. ILE SAS participated in numerous research projects in the fields relevant for the ecosystem accounting and Earth observation. They have been involved in a national MAES working group established by the Ministry of the Environment of the Slovak Republic, responsible for the implementation of MAES process in Slovakia.