Uncertainty, insufficient information or information of poor quality, limited cognitive capacity and time, along with
value conflicts and ethical considerations, are all aspects thatmake risk managementand riskcommunication difficult.
This paper provides a review of different risk concepts and describes how these influence risk management,
communication and planning in relation to forest ecosystem services. Based on the review and results of empirical
studies, we suggest that personal assessment of risk is decisive in the management of forest ecosystem services.
The results are used together with a reviewof different principles of the distribution of risk to propose an approach
to risk communication that is effective aswell as ethically sound. Knowledge of heuristics and mutual information
on both beliefs and desires are important in the proposed risk communication approach. Such knowledge provides
an opportunity for relevant information exchange, so that gaps in personal knowledge maps can be filled in and
effective risk communication can be promoted.