The SAC/SEPA biennial conference “Valuing Ecosystems: Policy, Economic and Management Interactions” took place in Edinburgh this week and was well attended by a wide range of stakeholders from academics to civil servants to practitioners, including Scottish Land & Estates. The conference provided the opportunity for the best possible scientific understanding of the complexities associated with the delivery of multiple ecosystem services to be presented. It also allowed delegates to discuss what still needs to be done to have an ecosystem approach recognised and supported by land managers, researchers and policy-makers. Scotland’s Environment Minster, Stewart Stevenson MSP, opened the conference with support for a “whole system approach” to policy making and one which engaged the support of all those using land. Current understanding of the linkages between different ecosystems and the services they provide is incomplete, consequently management approaches need to be flexible to adapt to these uncertainties. The need for implementation at the landscape scale also means integrating management practices across different land-managers.