Economics and Ecosystem Services

Science Center Objects

Federal policymakers and land managers are accountable to the public for how they use public resources and for the outcomes of policy and management decisions. Through a variety of economic analyses and custom modeling, SEA economists evaluate how investments and management decisions affect individuals, local communities, and society as a whole.


Mountain Hike

Scientists hiking in Glacier National Park. Photo credit: Greg Pederson, USGS. Public domain.

Specifically, SEA economists conduct both economic valuation and economic impact assessment.

  • Economic valuation typically focuses on the value or benefits experienced by individuals.
  • In contrast, economic impact assessment typically focuses on the benefits realized by businesses and communities and is often measured as jobs and business activity.


SEA economists also develop and estimate models of economic decision-making, contribute to related tools such as web applications, and communicate with the public and stakeholders about economic concepts, theory, and results.