Currently in my lab



Jannik Schultner works as part of a micro-grant project on fragmentation and social-ecological system within Ethiopia. His project is also funded by an ERC grant awarded to Joern Fischer.

Melissa Giorgis works on invasive species and fire ecology, and is an incoming PostDoc from Cordoba, Argentina.

Chris Ives works on human nature connections as part of the Leverage point project funded by the Volkswagen foundation.

John-Oliver Engler



Christian Dorninger works within the leverage point project on biophysical flow and connection of people to nature.

Fabienne Gralla works on the impact of nuclear disasters. Having a background in sustainability sciences, she ha s a strong standing in transdisciplinary sciences.

Anna-Lena Rau works on the temporal aspects of Ecosystem Services. She is a PhD student within the 2042 initiative at Leuphana University.

Julian Ahlborn focuses on research in dryland ecosystems. He is currently working on grazing effects in rangelands of Mongolia. He has a background in botany and biogeography.

Marlene Roellig works on wood pastures in Europa as part of a scholarship awarded by Leuphana University, and her PhD is also supervised by Joern Fischer and Jens Newig.

Oyundari Chuluunkhuyag – Oyundari works on rangeland biodiversity and plant ecology in Dzungarian Gobi. She has a background in botany and currently works at department of Biology, National University of Mongolia.

Pascal Fust – Pascal works on grazing systems in Madagaskar within a project awarded to Eva Schlecht, and works in my lab 2-3 days per week as part of a collaboration.

Jan Treiber – Jan works on the biogeography of plants in Central Asia, and I co-supervise him in a joined project with Karsten Wesche, Görlitz.

Lotte Lutz – Lotte works on context-specific regional energy transition strategies and their implementation. Her background in Geography and her current work in the IETSR joins her expertise in social-ecological systems and solution-oriented research.

Denise Matias (located mainly in Bonn) – Denise works on the changes in wild honey hunting and gathering by indigenous peoples. She uses her background in biology and environmental sciences and policy in conceptualizing development interventions in social-ecological systems.

In addition I am co-supervising several external PhDs.


Scientific assistants

Robert Feller  – Robert is an expert on GIS, and beside his contribution to the teaching and research of the group has his own research focus on green rooftops.



Anne Nagel

Oliver Hoepner

Past supervision

Patric Brandt -Scientific assistant working on transdisciplinary sciences, climate change, ecosystem services and biodiversity. He is an expert in GIS and statistics. He currently makes a PhD at KIT, after working in our lab from 2010-2013. Our active collaboration continues.


Heidi Hirsch –

Jannes Münchow –



Claude Meisch

GIS-“masters students” at Halle University

J. Hanspach, M. Eiselt, S. Both, N. Fischer, M. Seyring, J. Wehner, S. Klein and J. Treiber.