Dr. Christian Klassert

Co-Speaker of the Working Group Social-Science Water Research

Helmholtz Centre for Environmental

Research - UFZ
Department of Economics

Permoserstr. 15
04318 Leipzig

Tel: +49 341 6025 1743



Christian Klassert

Christian Klassert is the co-speaker of the Working Group Social-Science Water Research. His work combines coupled human-natural systems modeling, agent-based modeling, and econometrics to assess the water security impacts of unequal urban water access and agricultural droughts. Christian contributes to the development of large-scale models of water security in Jordan (Jordan Water Project), food-water-energy nexus sustainability in the Indian Upper Bhima Basin (FUSE Project), and agricultural drought adaptation in Germany (UFZ Graduate Schools AGRI-TRANSFORM and Thirsty Cities). His results have been published in Nature Sustainability, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), Earth's Future, and other journals. He acts as a reviewer for a range of journals, including Nature Water, One Earth, and Water Resources and Economics. Christian is a co-recipient of the UFZ Research award 2022 for his inter- and transdisciplinary work assessing the risk of future water crises in the country of Jordan.

Curriculum Vitae

Professional appointments

10/2022 −


02/2017 –

02/2014 –

03/2011 –

Visiting Postdoctoral Scholar, Department of Earth System Science (Prof. Dr. Steven Gorelick), Doerr School of Sustainability, Stanford University

Postdoctoral Researcher, Department of Economics, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Leipzig, Germany (topic: coupled human-natural systems modeling of water security and droughts)

Researcher, Department of Economics, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Leipzig, Germany

Researcher, Chair of Economics, especially Institutional Environmental Economics (Prof. Dr. Gawel), Leipzig University

Research Assistant, Department of Bioenergy, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Leipzig, Germany

Academic degrees




PhD in Economics, Leipzig University, thesis: "The Value of Decentralized Private Water Service Provision in Intermittent Water Supply Systems: Coupled Hydro-Economic System Analyses of Formal and Informal Water Markets in Jordan" (grade: summa cum laude, 1.0)

European Master in Law and Economics and LL.M., jointly awarded by the Universities of Hamburg, Germany, Ghent, Belgium, and Haifa, Israel (“with great distinction”)

German academic law degree (Erstes Staatsexamen), Mainz University, Germany (ranked 2nd best in state-wide examination)


UFZ Graduate School AGRI-TRANSFORM – Leverage Points for the Transformation to an Environmentally Sustainable Agriculture

UFZ Graduate School Thirsty Cities – Pathways for Water-Resilient Urban Transformation and Agricultural Adaptation

Future Earth project NexusFootprints – Combining Indicators for Urban Food-Water-Energy Nexus Comparison

Belmont Forum project FUSE – Food-water-energy for Urban Sustainable Environments

BMUB project JordanCap – Jordan Water Project Capacity Building: Development and Implementation of a Strategic Modeling Tool for Water Management in Jordan

Belmont Forum project Jordan Water Project – Integrated Analysis of Freshwater Resources Sustainability in Jordan                               

Helmholtz IVF project Drivers of Bioenergy Production and Transregional Effects

EU FP7 project POLICYMix – Assessing the role of economic instruments in policy mixes for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem services provision

Recent publications

Full list of publications available at: Google Scholar profile

Selected publications:

Klassert, C., Yoon, J., Sigel, K., Klauer, B., Talozi, S., Lachaut, T., Selby, P., Knox, S., Avisse, N., Tilmant, A., Harou, J.J., Mustafa, D., Meddelin-Azuara, J., Bataineh, B., Zhang, H., Gawel, E., Gorelick, S.M. (2023) Unexpected growth of an illegal water market. Nature Sustainability. DOI: 10.1038/s41893-023-01177-7

Yoon, J., Klassert, C., Selby, P., Lachaut, T., Knox, S., Avisse, N., Harou, J., Tilmant, A., Klauer, B., Mustafa, D., Sigel, K., Talozi, S., Gawel, E., Meddelin-Azuara, J., Bataineh, B., Zhang, H., & Gorelick, S.M. (2021). Coupled human-natural system analysis of freshwater security under climate and population change. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), 118(14): e2020431118. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2020431118

Yoon, J., Romero‐Lankao, P., Yang, Y. E., Klassert, C., et al. (2022). A typology for characterizing human action in multisector dynamics models. Earth's Future, 10(8). DOI: 10.1029/2021EF002641

In review:

Nagpal, M., Klassert, C., Heilemann, J., Klauer, B., & Gawel, E. (in review). Measuring Crop Acreage Adaptation to Changing Yields and Prices: An Empirical Analysis for Agriculture in Germany. Pre-print available at SSRN: 4728661

Other recent publications: (2021 − now)

Yoon, J., Voisin, N., Klassert, C., Thurber, T., and Xu, W. (2024). Representing farmer irrigated crop area adaptation in a large-scale hydrological model. Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 28, 899–916. DOI: 10.5194/hess-28-899-2024

Klassert, C. (2023). Unequal, unreliable, and unfixable?—The need to investigate water infrastructure improvements in intermittent supply systems. Water Resources Research, 59(11), e2023WR036208. DOI: 10.1029/2023WR036208

Kuhlicke, C., de Brito, M. M., Bartkowski, B., Botzen, W., Doğulu, C., Han, S., ... Klassert, C., ... & Rufat, S. (2023). Spinning in circles? A systematic review on the role of theory in social vulnerability, resilience and adaptation research. Global Environmental Change, 80, 102672. DOI: 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2023.102672

Karutz, R., Klassert, C., & Kabisch, S. (2023). On farmland and floodplains—Modeling urban growth impacts based on global population scenarios in Pune, India. Land, 12(5), 1051. DOI: 10.3390/su14095323

Lachaut, T., Yoon, J., Klassert, C., & Tilmant, A. (2022). Aggregation in bottom-up vulnerability assessments and equity implications: The case of Jordanian households’ water supply. Advances in Water Resources, 169, 104311. DOI: 10.1016/j.advwatres.2022.104311

Zozmann, H., Morgan, A., Klassert, C., Klauer, B., & Gawel, E. (2022). Can Tanker Water Services Contribute to Sustainable Access to Water? A Systematic Review of Case Studies in Urban Areas. Sustainability, 14(17), 11029. DOI: 10.3390/su141711029

Klauer, B., Küblböck, K., Omann, I., Karutz, R., Klassert, C., Zhu, Y., ... & Gorelick, S. (2022). Stakeholder Workshops Informing System Modeling—Analyzing the Urban Food–Water–Energy Nexus in Amman, Jordan. Sustainability, 14(19), 11984. DOI: 10.3390/su141911984

Zozmann, H., Klassert, C., Klauer, B., & Gawel, E. (2022). Water procurement time and its implications for household water demand—Insights from a water diary study in five informal settlements of Pune, India. Water, 14(7), 1009. DOI: 10.3390/w14071009

Karutz, R., Omann, I., Gorelick, S. M., Klassert, C., Zozmann, H., Zhu, Y., ... & Klauer, B. (2022). Capturing Stakeholders’ Challenges of the Food–Water–Energy Nexus—A Participatory Approach for Pune and the Bhima Basin, India. Sustainability, 14(9), 5323. DOI: 10.3390/su14095323

Zozmann, H., Klassert, C., Klauer, B., & Gawel, E. (2022). Heterogeneity, household co-production, and risks of water services—Water demand of private households with multiple water sources. Water Economics and Policy, 8(01), 2250006. DOI: 10.1142/S2382624X22500060

For further publications, please see my Google Scholar profile