Economics of Hunting

Economics is a crucial aspect of policy formulation and decision-making, especially during our current time of austerity. Unfortunately the data on the economics of hunting is dispersed and extremely varied across Europe.

There is a need to develop a Framework that can capture and place the various data sets without necessarily developing new or common methodologies.

For this reason, FACE has collaborated with MEP Véronique Mathieu to develop a Framework to Evaluate the Economics of Hunting, which should be finalised with assistance from the University of Stirling in Scotland during the first quarter of 2013. The Framework is not an analytical one but rather a conceptual one. It places the various values associated with hunting into three broad categories: socio-cultural, environmental and monetary. Any number of methods could be used to evaluate the various values and it may not be possible to monetise all the values. For example how do you value the enjoyment of a solitary evening waiting for a Roebuck that eventually evades you? These sorts of values are difficult to express in monetary terms, but they are important values and add to individual and social wellbeing: it is very important to recognise them.

In the meantime a number of other process and initiatives have been emerging and in particular the German Hunters’ Association DJV has been looking into initiating a project in Germany on the Economics of hunting, and so invited FACE, the CIC and the German CIC Delegation to a meeting in Berlin. At this meeting Angus Middleton presented the concept of the Framework and the fact that part of this work is designed to feed into the EU’s Mapping and Assessment of Ecosystem Services (MAES). The CIC - who FACE had previously provided with an overview of the data available in Europe - have been exploring the possibility of linking to the United Nations Environment Programme’s The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) process. However, this connection would involve more of a Total Wildlife Value Approach, whilst the DJV and CIC German Delegation are looking for a suitable methodology to evaluate the Economics of hunting in Germany. Although there were differences of opinion in how to proceed, with the CIC generally favouring a standardised and centralised approach focusing on Wildlife and FACE favouring an integrated approach focusing on hunting, it was agreed that we would continue to collaborate and share information, which the DJV kindly agreed to coordinate.


In addition to this, FACE has been involved with the European Commission’s DG Environment MAES process and Nature Policy Manager Gabor von Bethlenfalvy attended the first Open Stakeholders Workshop on 22 November where he outlined some of the work that FACE is doing. As the MAES process is still being formulated, there is a real opportunity to have hunting values incorporated into the ecosystem assessments that should in due course be aggregated up at a European level.