(The natural environment)
The natural environment is negatively affected by changes in land use, eutrophication, invasive alien species and climate change. This leads to losses in biodiversity and reduction in ecosystem function calling for new methods in conservation biology and restoration ecology. This is the central mission of the Chair of Restoration Ecology.
Our research is focused on vegetation patterns and processes with relevance for restoration projects. The main research fields are restoration of wetlands, plant material used for restoration, biological invasions and global change ecology. The approach is a combination of methods from population, community and ecosystem ecology in semi-natural or man-made ecosystems. Recent research project have been done in southern Brazil, southern Africa and central Europe. Ecosystems investigated include various types of grassland, wetlands, agricultural systems and urban vegetation.
Within teaching the Chair of Restoration Ecology aims at introducing a basic and applied understanding of vegetation patterns and ecosystem processes which can be used for environmental planning and management, nature conservation and related research activities.