About us

Our team is interested in how land ecosystems, climate change and land-use change interact globally and regionally. We explore through a range of modelling approaches challenges and solutions to sustainable development arising from land system dynamics. We are based at the Campus Alpin of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, located in the town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen in Southern Germany.

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How do land and climate interact? Climate is a chief co-determinant of vegetation cover and carbon, water and nutrient cycles. Climate change, including the increasing levels of CO2 in the atmosphere, therefore will cause biomes’ boundaries to shift, and impact biodiversity and numerous processes in terrestrial ecosystems.

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Ecosystem functional diversity and services

Life together with climate and other abiotic drivers is the basis to the state and functioning of the ecosystems. Although we do not fully understand the entirety of consequences of our doing, humanity is exploiting, in many places over-exploiting, ecosystems around the world: to gather resources, as space for human living, and for agriculture, forestry, and many other forms of use.

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Impacts and future of land use

Land provides the basis for our livelihoods – but the current extend of human influence, magnitude and rate of change of resource use is historically unprecedented and not sustainable. The way humans make use of terrestrial ecosystems clearly will have to improve, especially since changing climate and rising CO2 concentrations will become additional key factors, which affect growing conditions for crops, pastures, and forests.

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Kuehe auf einer Almwiese in den bayerischen Alpen

How more sophisticated leaf biomass simulations can increase the realism of modelled animal populations

Team members Jens Krause, Almut Arneth and Peter Anthoni published an article in Ecological Modelling (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2022.110061). We investigated the impacts of a complex, process-based DGVM on simulated animal populations. 

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Kick-off-Event des neuen Netzwerks leitender Wissenschaftlerinnen

Kick-off meeting of the KIT Womens Professors Forum in Karlsruhe

On 30. June the kick-off meeting of the KIT Womens Professors Forum took place in Karlsruhe.

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Moorgebiet in Oberbayern mit Moorkiefern und kleinem See, Deutschland

IPCC publishes the 6th Assessment Report of its WG2

The report repeats the warnings the scientific community has been expressing for years. Global warming, reaching 1.5°C in the near-term, is expected to cause unavoidable increases in multiple climate hazards and present multiple risks to both ecosystems and humans.

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