Patricia (Patty) Balvanera is a professor at the Institute for Ecosystems and Sustainability Research at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. She was trained in biology, ethnobotany and ecology. Within large inter- and trans-disciplinary teams and research networks, she explores the role of biodiversity in contributing to human well-being and analyzes the dynamics of social ecological systems, with emphasis on the values that underpin the drivers of such dynamics. At the local scale, she monitors the dynamics of managed diverse tropical systems, and co-develops more sustainable food systems through transdisciplinary processes designed by creatives around the kitchen. At the global scale, she develops conceptual frameworks and monitoring strategies, performs cross-site syntheses, and delivers assessments at the science-policy interface. She has co-led several inter- and trans-disciplinary initiatives such as the Scientific Committee of the Programme for Ecosystem Change and Society (one of the core Projects of Future Earth), the Ecosystem Services group of the Global Earth Observation Biodiversity Observation Network (GEOBON), the Mexican Network on Social Ecological Systems and Sustainability, and the Values Assessment of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services.