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Biodiversity Exploratories 

Platform: Biodiversity Exploratories

Changes in land use and its intensity are major determinants of biodiversity. The Biodiversity Exploratories funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG Priority Program 1374) comprise three exemplary large-scale and long-term research grassland and forest sites across Germany, which serve as open platforms for an interdisciplinary research consortium combing monitoring and experiments. The Exploratories allow research in real landscapes on feedback loops between landscape change, diversity of genes, species and biological interactions, and ecosystem services.

Biodiversity Exploratories


(Functional Significance of Forest Biodiversity in Europe)

Platform: FunDivEUROPE

FunDivEUROPE is a collaborative project within the European Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). The overall scientific goal of FunDivEUROPE is to quantify the effects of forest biodiversity on ecosystem functions and services in major European forest types. A major aim is to understand and quantify how tree species diversity can be used to foster the provision of ecosystem services such as timber production, carbon sequestration and freshwater. To achieve this, scientists will combine field data sampled on the European sites of the global network of tree diversity experiments − TreeDivNet , the world largest infrastructure of functional biodiversity research − (Experimental Platform) and on a newly established network covering a gradient of tree diversity in established forest stands (Exploratory Platform). In addition, national forest inventory data will be analyzed for potential diversity effects (Inventory Platform). Besides these scientific Platforms, FunDivEUROPE seeks to strengthen the science-policy interface via a Knowledge Transfer Platform.


TERENO (TERrestrial ENviromental Observatories)

Platform: TERENO

TERENO is a network hosting four observatories for an integrated environmental monitoring of German regions with high vulnerability with respect to climate change – extending from the North-East Lowlands to the Bavarian Alps. The observation platform is used to study and explore long-term ecological and social trends triggered by global change at a regional level. The UFZ operates the TERENO observatory Harz/Central German Lowland which covers various landscape types and ranges from the Harz Mountains in the west, to the course of the Elbe river in the east, from predominantly agricultural regions to urban areas such as the cities of Leipzig and Halle. Apart from the hydrological and urban research the observation of biodiversity dynamics in the context of land use and climate change is another important research field in the observatory. A network of long-term monitoring and research sites along a main transect (with respect to the climatic gradient) is implemented.

TERENO network

MyDiv – Mycorrhizae in tree Diversity effects on ecosystem functioning and trophic interactions

Platform: TERENO

MyDiv was established in 2015 as a tree diversity experiment in the form of an open experimental platform. It is located at the Bad Lauchstädt Experimental Research Station of the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ and is operated by the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig. MyDiv investigates the significance of aboveground-belowground interactions in tree diversity effects on ecosystem functioning. More specifically, the effects of different mycorrhizal associations on a variety of ecosystem functions and soil food webs are studied. MyDiv is part of the TreeDivNet Network .

MyDiv platform