CreaTures seminar #9: Laura Pereira

Operationalising the Nature Futures framework

In her talk Laura Pereira presented the latest work from the IPBES (Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services) task force on scenarios and models regarding the operationalisation of the Nature Futures Framework (NFF).

The NFF is a heuristic in the shape of a triangle that captures diverse, positive values for human–nature relationships in a triangular space. They consider three main ways of valuing nature at each of the vertices (nature for nature, nature for society and nature as culture). The NFF builds on the three values of nature (intrinsic, instrumental and relational values, respectively) identified by the IPBES and repurposes it to make it actionable for the modelling and scenarios community. The NFF triangle illustrates how it is possible to emphasize a complex mixture of values for appreciating nature depending where in the triangle you are situated and thus allows for a plurality of perspectives to be held in different times, contexts and spaces. As such, the NFF approach and the triangle can be used both as a boundary object for continuously opening up more plural perspectives in the creation of nature scenarios and as an actionable framework for developing consistent scenarios and models across multiple scales and levels. She explored in more depth the latter process and the set of guidelines that are in development for operationalizing the NFF for the development of a new generation of nature future scenarios and models.

The Nature Futures Framework triangle with a list of some possible synonyms for the value perspectives that are used by various actors. (Source: PBL, Next steps in developing nature futures, 2018)

Suggested Reading:

Pereira, LM,  Davies, KK,  den Belder, E, et al.  Developing multiscale and integrative nature–people scenarios using the Nature Futures Framework. People Nat.  2020; 2: 1172– 1195. https://doi.org/10.1002/pan3.10146 

Laura Pereira, Jan J. Kuiper, Odirilwe Selomane, et al. (2021) Advancing a toolkit of diverse futures approaches for global environmental assessments, Ecosystems and People, 17:1, 191-204, DOI: 10.1080/26395916.2021.1901783


Based in South Africa, Laura Pereira is a researcher at the Stockholm Resilience Centre and a senior researcher at the Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development at Utrecht University. She sits on the IPBES Task force on scenarios and models as well as the Earth Commission’ working group 4 on transformations. 

CreaTures project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870759. The content presented represents the views of the authors, and the European Commission has no liability in respect of the content.