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Shifting Gears for the Use of the Shifting Baseline Syndrome in Ecological Restoration

1
Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Chile, Casilla 653, Santiago 7800003, Chile
2
Departamento de Geografía, Universidad de Chile, Casilla 3387, Santiago 8331051, Chile
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2019, 11(5), 1458; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11051458
Received: 25 January 2019 / Revised: 3 March 2019 / Accepted: 5 March 2019 / Published: 9 March 2019
There are two barriers to accomplishing restoration of ecosystems: insufficient information about historical baselines to guide restoration, and shifts between the actual baselines and perceptions about historical conditions. These two conditions generate a phenomenon called shifting baseline syndrome (SBS). Our study systematically reviewed and quantitatively analyzed the SBS studies. There is an increase and subsequent stabilization in the number of publications, 32% of scientific articles added new information and 5% of them delivered biological and social information required to demonstrate the SBS presence. Meta-analysis conducted showed an inconsistency between biological and social data. The inclusion of a greater amount of species in the biological data compared to social data produced the inconsistency. There must be an improvement in reporting both biological and social information to assess SBS. The integration of both sources of information would also enhance the success of restoration projects. The consideration of perceptions about resource users are also in accordance with global agreements about sustainable use of natural resources and ecological restoration. View Full-Text
Keywords: ecological restoration; environmental assessment; environmental perceptions; historical ecology; meta-analysis; biodiversity conservation ecological restoration; environmental assessment; environmental perceptions; historical ecology; meta-analysis; biodiversity conservation
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Guerrero-Gatica, M.; Aliste, E.; Simonetti, J.A. Shifting Gears for the Use of the Shifting Baseline Syndrome in Ecological Restoration. Sustainability 2019, 11, 1458.

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