The ACES (A Community on Ecosystem Services) 2014 conference linking science, practice and decision-making took place from 8-12 December 2014 in Washington DC. There were over 500 participants at ACES 2014 from over 30 nations, including leaders from all levels of the US government, NGOs, academia, and the private sector. The conference extended over five days and included workshops, plenary and parallel sessions, town halls, and posters. Session topics included biophysical science and the production of ecosystem services, the interrelationship between human well-being and ecosystem services, the impacts of climate change on ecosystems and their services, monetary and non-monetary valuation techniques, and the role of traditional ecological knowledge.
A poster on the Oppla common platform being developed with the OpenNESS project was presented by Mark Rounsevell and Paula Harrison. Oppla was also mentioned in two plenary sessions on "Climate Change and Ecosystem Services" and "International Perspectives on Incorporating Ecosystem Services into Decision-Making: Science and Practice" in which partners from OpenNESS participated. OPERAs partner, Heera Lee from University of Bonn, also presented on "A quantitative review of relationships between ecosystem services" in one of the parallel sessions.
The conference provided a venue for synthesizing the research, methods, tools, policies and cultural values needed to more routinely and effectively incorporate ecosystem services into decision-making. There were many opportunities to share advances in science and practice, and to continue to build the ecosystem service community.