Ulrike Hiltner


Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research - UFZ
Department of Ecological Modelling

Permoserstr. 15
04318 Leipzig

Building 1.0, Room 225

Tel.: +49 341 235-1723
Fax: +49 341 235-451723

Ulrike Hiltner


  • Simulation of resource-effective management strategies in tropical forests in context of climate change
  • Estimating aboveground biomass and carbon dynamics of forests in Ethiopia, Madagascar, and French Guyana
  • Modelling forest growth dynamics
  • Investigation of annual growth patterns of trees                                   

Simulation of resource-effective management strategies in tropical forests

On a global scale, highest deforestation rates occur in tropical least developing countries. As a consequence of human-induced climate change and land-use change, the forests’ ecological balance is disturbed, so that the permanent provision of their ecosystem services is not guaranteed and losses in biodiversity and forest resources occur. However, estimating long-term effects of deforestation and climate change on forest growth dynamics in the tropics is important in order to provide policy-makers with science-based recommendations from which appropriate plans of action can be derived.
This study‘s goal is to evaluate long-term responses of forest growth regarding management strategies in the context of climate change. To evaluate possible consequences for the local forest ecosystems, we use the individual-oriented forest simulation model FORMIND. We parameterize the model utilizing field observation data including forest inventories, dendrochronological, and climate measurements. By testing different parameter settings for logging and climate, we analyse explicit simulation scenarios focusing on aboveground biomass and carbon dynamics. Our climate change scenarios are modelled on findings of the 5th IPCC Assessment Report. In addition, we intend to evaluate the effects of a wider range of management strategies on long-term forest growth dynamics by implementing an updated version of the management module to our existing forest simulation model. This will allow the development of management strategies that are more economic and ecological friendly.


  • Hiltner, U., Bräuning, A., Gebrekirstos, A., Huth, A., Fischer, R., (2016):
    Impacts of precipitation variability on the dynamics of a dry tropical montane forest
    Ecol. Model. 320 , 92 - 101
    full text (url)


Since 02/2016 PhD student at the UFZ
01/2014-01/2016 Research assistant in the field of ecological modelling at the UFZ
04/2011-12/2013 MSc in Physical Geography at the Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg
Master’s Thesis on ecological modelling and dendroecology: “Climatic control and simulation of forest growth in a tropical montane forest in Ethiopia”
08/2009-06/2013 Student assistant in the dendro-laboratory at the Institute of Geography, Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg
10/2007-03/2011 BSc in Physical Geography at the Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg
Bachelor’s Thesis on dendroecology: “Climate-growth correlation of Pinus kochiana at a tree line site in the Greater Caucasus, Georgia