Benefits to the Labor Market of Achieving the EU Biodiversity Objectives


An increase in the level of awareness of the value of biodiversity and the failure until now to halt its decline evoked the release of a new EU biodiversity strategy in May 2011. The strategy has been recognized for its potential to not only combat biodiversity loss, but also to support socio-economic development. Accordingly, this project provides a foundation to help ensure that the EU labor force is fully prepared to take advantage of the opportunities that the biodiversity strategy offers and provide the skills needed to fulfil the EU’s commitments for biodiversity conservation.


Halting biodiversity loss is recognized as one of the greatest environmental challenges faced in the EU. Accordingly, the EU’s new biodiversity strategy - “Our life insurance, our natural capital: an EU biodiversity strategy to 2020” - aims to reverse biodiversity loss and accelerate the transition to a green and sustainable economy. This strategy notes the potential for new skills, jobs and business opportunities through nature-based innovation and action to restore ecosystems. Limited knowledge and evidence on the relationship between biodiversity and jobs and the role of biodiversity targets in meeting other labor market objectives necessitate further research.
Objectives and methodology:
In light of the new EU Biodiversity Strategy and current employment insecurity, the objective of this study is to establish evidence on the implications for employment and skills of the strategy and its target to halt biodiversity loss. The following tasks will be involved:

  • Establish a catalogue of existing and new types of jobs that are needed for the enhancement of biodiversity and ecosystem services and which are dependent on these two factors;
  • Provide an overview of current Member State practices in terms of developing new jobs or job strategies for facing the loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services and anticipatory assessments of the necessary skills;
  • Select biodiversity related jobs and provide an identification of the skills needs and gaps for those jobs; and
  • Assess the benefits and drawbacks of achieving the biodiversity targets for the labor market.

Through the completion of these tasks, the study ultimately aims to help guide initiatives by the EU and its Member States, including both biodiversity conservation measures and labor market interventions.

Tasks of Ecologic Institute

Ecologic’s team is to collect and compile data on the linkages between biodiversity jobs and skills and the expected impacts of the EU biodiversity strategy and related policies on activities, jobs and skills in Germany. In addition, the team will provide a review of German policies, strategies and initiatives relevant to biodiversity and labor markets. Ecologic will finally conduct an in-depth analysis of one such initiative at the Member State level.

The final report can be downloaded here.

GHK (GHK), United Kingdom
Project ID
biodiversity, employment, EU Biodiversity Strategy, jobs, skills, labor markets, green economy, EU Member States

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