PhD position: Innovative financial instruments for sustainable landscapes

  • Interim
  • Groningen

Universiteit Groningen

The need for halting biodiversity loss and maintaining and improving other ecosystem services and landscape quality is broadly felt across the world and this motivates the project: Good intentions in nature and landscape conservation by stakeholders are often hindered by the lack of financial resources. During the last decades, nature conservationists and entrepreneurs have initiated experiments with new financial instruments. In several of these, ‘customers’ pay for ecosystem services (i.e. those cultural, regulating or provisioning services not covered by regular markets). However, the most efficient and effective ways for doing so are unclear, especially since information and transaction costs are high.

Combining expertise in sustainable finance, ecosystem services, and nature and landscape valuation, this project engages in a series of experiments with landscape securities as a standardized low-transaction-cost form of financial support, held by both businesses and citizens. The project joins forces with the Northern Netherlands National Parks and NWB Bank and other important stakeholders in a co-production of knowledge approach. The experiments are place based and builds among others on the greenmapper software developed by the University of Groningen (


The Rudolph Agricola School for Sustainable Development organizes interdisciplinary research about sustainable development. The PhD candidate will be enrolled in the graduate school of Economics and Business. The supervision team consists of Prof. dr Klaus Hubacek (Faculty of Science and Engineering), Prof. dr Bert Scholtens (Faculty of Economics and Business) and Dr Frans Sijtsma (Faculty of Spatial Sciences). The PhD candidate will be enrolled in the Graduate School of Economics & Business and will attend research meetings and other activities at the three faculties.

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