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Johanna Alkan Olsson outdoors. Photo.

Johanna Alkan Olsson

Social environmental scientist

Johanna Alkan Olsson outdoors. Photo.

Understanding farmer uptake of measures that support biodiversity and ecosystem services in the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) : An EKLIPSE Expert Working Group report


  • Calum Brown
  • Eszter K. Kovacs
  • Yves Zinngrebe
  • Amaia Albizua
  • Antonia Galanaki
  • Ioanna Grammatikopoulou
  • Iryna Herzon
  • Doris Marquardt
  • Davy McCracken
  • Johanna Alkan Olsson
  • Sergio Villamayor-Tomas

Summary, in English

Recent scientific research highlights the urgent need to protect Europe’s remaining – and rapidly declining– biological diversity. The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is one of the major tools with which policymakers in the European Union (EU) can achieve this aim. However, so far, the CAP has proved largely ineffective – or even detrimental – to this goal. With relatively localised exceptions, the Policy’s notable success in ensuring supplies of food and fiber by supporting Europe’s farmers has been at the expense of environmental objectives. This report presents the findings of an Expert Working Group (EWG) convened to explore the ways in which the Common Agricultural Policy could be made more effective in protecting biodiversity and delivering associated ecosystem services, particularly through the implementation of effective biodiversity measures by Europe’s farmers. The EWG was established with a focus on Ecological Focus Areas (EFAs), a policy instrument introduced to
the CAP in the period 2014 - 2020, who broadened this remit to also consider evidence from other measures. In the first of three main strands of research (Step A), we synthesised the findings of recent reviews that investigate the most beneficial measures for biodiversity on farmland. In the second (Step B), we reviewed the factors affecting the design and selection of these measures at European, national and farm scales. In the third (Step C), we used our findings to develop recommendations for improving the impacts of the CAP on biodiversity and associated ecosystem services. The bulk of our work focused on Step B, in particular a new assessment of factors affecting farmer’s uptake of relevant measures, and a series of interviews with farmers’ representatives to further develop our insights and findings.


  • Centre for Environmental and Climate Science (CEC)
  • BECC: Biodiversity and Ecosystem services in a Changing Climate

Publishing year




Document type



Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, Wallingford


  • Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use




  • ISBN: 978-1-906698-65-2