AbstractNowadays, land-use planning systems show structural weakness from an informative perspective, depending on the capacity to develop rapidly and accurately territorial knowledge as a decision support system (DSS). The capacity to effectively manage territorial transformations in a sustainability perspective is inadequate, especially under the pressure of rapid changes involving social, environmental, and economic dimensions. We recognize the Ecosystem Services (ES) approach as a robust framework to contribute to the renewal of the planning system by introducing spatially explicit knowledge of both actual environmental performances and the expected impacts related to land-use policies and territorial transformations. In this paper, we address the class of Regulation and Maintenance Ecosystem Services (ReMES) that has a relevant influence on the environment’s suitability to contribute to human well-being and to relate the local anthropic transformations to the larger scale where ES are provided and the impacts are tangible. The aim of this work is to propose a methodology to build a territorial knowledge infrastructure by mapping a relevant set of ReMES in Italy and identifying specialization subregions, to be intended as areas of high provision of one or more ReMES. The results, interpretable as a measure of territorial performances, represent a cross-cutting informative layer and a tool to support the comparison between different planning scenarios comprehensive of both environmental protection issues and socioeconomic development strategies.

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