Literature in the vulnerability of socio-ecological systems has highlighted the need for considering Social Perception of Risk (SPR) as a determinant of social vulnerability. This paper combines quantitative and qualitative approaches for analyzing SPR in the context of a socio-ecological system. We analyze the SPR of loss or degradation of water provision and erosion control in the Northern Andes (Riogrande basin, Antioquia-Colombia). In our case study beneficiaries assign high importance to water provision and erosion control ecosystem services and recognize that in some cases their productive practices degrade the capacity of the ecosystems to provide such services. The results of the quantitative approach indicate that variables such as age, income, number of children in charge, size of the land, participation in environmental issues and knowledge of environmental topics influence on the level of perception of risk of loss or degradation of both ecosystem services. The economic activity, the number of years that the beneficiary has been in the study area and the relationship with institutions influence the perception of risk associated with erosion but not with water. Based on the results we propose strategies to cope with social vulnerability.
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