Ecosystem and Landscape Ecology

The Research Group Ecosystem and Landscape Ecology integrates relevant ecological disciplines and methods (soil and vegetation science, hydrology, micrometeorology, remote sensing, spatial statistics, ecological and geo-statistical modelling) to analyse ecosystem functions and services across spatial and temporal scales. Beneath systematic survey and monitoring of fundamental data, experiments and modelling of global change impacts on biodiversity, catchment yield, natural hazards risk and land-use/land-cover are conducted.

Research activities mainly take place in four subject areas, integrating ecosystem and landscape level (experimental and modelled) with the following research objectives: (i) LUCC, historical and current land use/cover change (LUCC) in the Alps and scenario development; (ii) Ecosystem Services, consequences of LUCC on ecosystem functions and services; (iii) Biogeochemical Cycles: impacts of global change on carbon and water balance of mountain grasslands; (iv) Sustainability, develop, test and implement sustainable monitoring systems at local and regional scale (human-environmental decision support systems). The central strategy of the research group is based on a wide and interdisciplinary understanding of ecological processes and functions as prerequisite to evaluate and model impacts of global change. The international collaborations and lead or participation in several international (EU: ERA-net, INTERREG) and national research projects guarantee cutting-edge research in mountain environments. The cooperation with disciplines from social and human sciences, statistics, and engineering attests the interdisciplinary dimension of the research group.

Ecosystem and Landscape Ecology Group                                                                                

Group Members

MSc Students

Janin Höllrigl
Friederike Barkmann
Jonas A. Bleiber
Melanie Forer
Hanna Maria Koloszyc
Christine Meusburger
Barbara Mosgöller
Maria Rottensteiner
Niklas Sanin
Tim Georg Schober
Melanie Thaler
Katharina Madlen Zweifel


Previous Group Members

Alberto Scotti, PhD, Brenda Zoderer, PhD, Nikolaus Obojes PhD, Sarah Kerle MSc, Katharina Antonie Schneider (Project AlpES), Claude Meisch DI (Project AlpES), Marina Kohler PhD, Veronika Fontana PhD, Georg Frenck PhD, Jacob Dein (Fulbright U.S. student, Oct 2015-Jul 2016), Georg Johann Lair DI Dr., Laura Bischof MSc, Michael Heinl DI Dr., Ute Krainer (Szukics) Dr., Dagmar Rubatscher Dr.

Current Projects

ES-Sambia: Vergleichende Analyse von Ökosystemleistungen in unterschiedlichen sozioökonomischen und naturräumlichen Regionen (EURAC, 2019-2021), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

APCC Special Report on land use, land management and climate change (Klima- und Energiefonds, 2019-2021), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

Tagfalter-Monitoring Vorarlberg (inatura Erlebnis Naturschau GmbH, Dornbirn, und REWE International, 2020-2024), PI: Johannes Rüdisser

Tagfalter-Experten-Monitoring I-II (EURAC, 2019-2022), PI: Johannes Rüdisser

Natur bewusst erleben (Revital Integrative Naturraumplanung GmbH, 2018-2020), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

Methane production of snow-covered soils due to oxygen depletion (TWF-Tiroler Wissenschaftsförderung, 2018-2020), PI: Christian Newesely

Euregio: Environment, Food & Health (EUREGIO - Europaregion Tirol - Südtirol - Trentino, 2017-2021), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

Tagfalter-Monitoring Tirol (Tiroler Naturschutzfonds, 2017-2022 und REWE International), PI: Johannes Rüdisser, Co-PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

LTER-Snowbeds Langzeitmonitoring Schneetälchen (EURAC, 2017-2021), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

RESULT-RESilience through synergies between agricULTure and tourism (Austrian Science Fund, 2017-2020, Co-PI: Georg Leitinger)

LTSER I-II-III  Long-term Socio-Ecological Research (Verein LTER Austria, 2014-2021), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

Recent Projects (selected)

Monitoring Programm Nationalpark Hohe Tauern: Standortklima, Bodenphysik, Bodenchemie und Produktivität (NP Hohe Tauern, 2016-2019), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Christian Newesely

Viel-Falter Top Citizen Science: Entwicklung und Evaluierung eines Erhebungssystems siedlungsnaher Schmetterlingshabitate (ÖAD-Österr. Austauschdienst, 2016-2019), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Johannes Rüdisser

AssET - Erfassung von H2O- und CO2-Flüssen mittels Ökosystemhaube - Assessment of H2O- and CO2-fluxes using ecosystem chamber measures (EURAC, 2016-2020), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Georg Leitinger

EIS-Matsch - Entwicklung und Implementierung von Storylines der zukünftigen Landschaftsentwicklung im LTSER-Gebiet Matschertal (EURAC, 2015-2020), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Georg Leitinger

AlpES - Alpine Ecosystem Services – mapping, maintenance and management (Alpine Space, 2016-2018), Lead Partner: EURAC, Co-PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

Ökosystemleistungen erleben (FWF-Wisenschaftskommunikation, 2016-2017), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

Landschaft im Visier: Raum-zeitliche Analyse der Abschusszahlen zur Ableitung der Landschaftsqualität und den daraus resultierenden Ökosystemleistungen (Provinz Bozen-Südtirol,  2016-2018), PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

Klimagro - In-Wertsetzung der Landwirtschaft für die Nutz- und Trinkwasserbereitstellung unter Berücksichtigung des Globalen Wandels (BMWFW, University of Innsbruck, 2013-2018). PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

ClimAgro - Valorization of agriculture for the water supply in context with climate change (Provinz Bozen-Südtirol,  2013-2017). PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Georg Leitinger

MONALISA - Monitoring key environmental parameters in the Alpine Environment involving science, technology and application (Provinz Bozen-Südtirol,  2013-2016). PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Georg Leitinger

REGARDS - REsilience of marginal GrAsslands and biodiveRsity management Decision Support
(ERA-net BiodivERsA, FWF). 2013-2016). PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Michael Bahn, Georg Leitinger

Viel-Falter Entwicklung und Evaluierung eines Erhebungssystems siedlungsnaher Schmetterlingshabitate (BMWF, 2013-2016) Sparkling Science. PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Johannes Rüdisser

Landscape changes and driving forces in the European Alps (longterm co-operation with   EURAC)

EcoRAlps Ecosystem services and restoration of traditional land-use systems in the Southern Alps (Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft, 2009-2014). PI: Ulrike Tappeiner 

COOLING TOWN - Thermal Connectivity between Urban Areas and Surrounding Landscape components in South Tyrol (Provinz Bozen-Südtirol, 2011-2014). PI: Heinl Michael and Leitinger Georg

Assessment, modelling and description of the important climate-environment interactions - GHB01SHIFT (alpS, 2010-2014). PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

SOILDIV (de):  Biodiversität der Bodenmakrofauna als Indikator für den biologischen Bodenzustand – Ergänzung der Nachhaltigkeitsindikatoren für Südtirol (Provinz Bozen-Südtirol,  2011-2013). PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Erwin Meyer   SOILDIV (en) 

CAMELEON - CArbon dynamics in Mountain Ecosystems : analyzing Landscape-scale Effects Of aNthropogenic changes (climate and land-use) (Umweltbundesamt ERA-net, 2011-2013). PI: Michael Bahn, Co-PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

CAFEE - Climate change in agriculture and forestry: an integrated assessment of mitigation and adaptation measures in Austria (ACRP, BOKU, 2011 -2013). PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

VITAL Ecosystem service proVIsion from coupled planT and microbial functionAL diversity in managed grasslands (ERA-net BiodivERsA, FWF 2009-2013). PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Michael Bahn

SUSTMONT (2009-2010), EUROSTAIN 2011-2013: Training on approaches to sustainable development in mountain areas under global change (EU-Lifelong Learning Programme). PI: Alexander Cernusca, Co-PI: Ulrike Tappeiner

Kultur.Land.(Wirt)schaft - Strategien für die Kulturlandschaft der Zukunft (EFRE-EU, Land Tirol, Universität, 2009-2012). PI Institute of Ecology: Ulrike Tappeiner

Forest-Check (BMWF, 2010-2013) Sparkling Science. PI: Ulrike Tappeiner, Co-PI: Paul Stampfl, Michael Heinl


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