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Dr Stephen Watson

Ecosystems Services Scientist

Contact Details


Dr Stephen Watson is an Ecosystem Services Scientist at PML. A marine ecologist and ecosystem services analyst by training, he is broadly interested in quantifying the often-complex interactions between anthropogenic pressures, biodiversity, ecosystem services and society in coastal, marine, terrestrial and other settings. His research utilises: ecological indicators, GIS, ecosystem models (e.g., InVEST) and methods of environmental economic evaluation. His work is highly interdisciplinary and often involves engagement with industry, regulators, businesses and the general public, and he has regularly led and supported the implementation of workshops, surveys and interviews.

Stephen conducted his PhD on the “impact of multiple stressors on coastal biodiversity and associated ecosystem services” at PML and the University of St Andrews from 2013-2017. Prior to his return to PML in 2020, he was a Senior Research Associate on the Solent Natural Capital Project at the University of Portsmouth and has worked on issues such as the impact of climate change and tipping points on ecosystem services as part of the wider Valuing Nature Network (VNP), UK Ocean Acidification (UKOA) and Biodiversity & Ecosystem Service Sustainability (BESS) research programmes.


DREAMS - Decommissioning - Relative Effects of Alternative Management Strategies

Contact: Dr Paul Somerfield

The highly integrated DREAMS project is designed to bring together information about the effects of man-made structures on the marine ecosystem and...

Selected key publications


  • Watson, S.C.L., Preston, J., Beaumont, N.J. and Watson, G.J., 2020. Assessing the natural capital value of water quality and climate regulation in temperate marine systems using a EUNIS biotope classification approach. Science of the total Environment, 744, p.140688.
  • Watson, S.C.L., Grandfield, F.G.C., Herbert, R.J.H. and Newton, A.C., 2018. Detecting ecological thresholds and tipping points in the natural capital assets of a protected coastal ecosystem. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, 215, 112-123.
  • Watson, S.C.L. and Newton, A.C., 2018. Dependency of businesses on flows of ecosystem services: A case study from the county of Dorset, UK. Sustainability (Switzerland), 10 (5).
  • Watson, S.C.L., Paterson, D.M., Queirós, A.M., Rees, A.P., Stephens, N., Widdicombe, S. and Beaumont, N.J., 2016. A conceptual framework for assessing the ecosystem service of waste remediation: In the marine environment. Ecosystem Services, 20, 69-81.