INVASIONS: The Invasion Potential of Alien Species

Identification, Assessment, and Risk Management


Department of Economics:

Department of Env. and Planning Law:

→ Dorothee Ortner

Dr. S. Klotz, Dr. H. Auge, Dr. I. Kühn, Dr. W. Durka

Prof. Dr. R. Brandl, Dr. M. Brändle (University Marburg)


Project financed by the German Federal Ministry of Science


04/2003 − 03/2006


The aim of the project is the development of a prevention framework which includes the identification and evaluation of alien species as well as a management concept on how to deal with these species.
In this project, we will elucidate the factors which enable, favour, or reinforce biological invasions by alien terrestrial plants in native ecosystems. A special focus will be put on the aspect of changes of alien plants due to cultivation and on their interrelationships within the foodweb.

At the level of risk management we intend to develop a legally admissible, effective and appropriate prevention concept which shows the possibilities of hindering the introduction of invasive species and of controlling alien species. This will be done on the basis of available scientific knowledge, of risk evaluation and economic evaluation of consequences by showing appropriate measures concerning invasion control and early warning systems.

Based on the identification and evaluation results from the ecological parts, the economic part of the project will evaluate different management measures concerning the spread of characteristic invasive species in different main vegetation types. Here, it will examine to what extent the standard evaluation procedures of environmental economics should be complemented by multicriteria tools. It is the aim of the sub-project to develop a generic pattern on the basis of several case studies in order to facilitate a fast and cheap evaluation of measures. Additionally, the feed-back of this information into the classification schema, the central element of the prevention concept, allows to consider economic criteria while identifying those species which require a special treatment due to the consequences of their invasion.

The jurisprudential sub-project has the task

  1. to analyse the existing juridical regulation frame to hinder biological invasions, taking into consideration european and international juridical guidelines. Her, we will especially examine the links to the law concerning the Single European Market and the international trade law.
  2. to evaluate the existing juridical reglementation while taking into account the results from biology and economics whether it guarantees an effective protection, and
  3. to evaluate the existing juridical regulation in the light of the scientific and economic knowledge acquired in the entire project with regard to the question, whether they provide an effective protection and at the same time preserve the appropriateness of the control-intervention and finally as far as - according to the evaluation - necessary,
  4. to contribute to the development of an effective and problem-suitable concept of risk-management, in particular to disclose the possibilities of legislation and the limits of prevention and to identify the level of regulation, where legislative actions have to be taken (EC, FRG, Federal States).


D. Ortner (2009), Der Schutz der Biodiversität vor den Gefährdungen durch gebietsfremde invasive Arten − Regelungsbestand und Reformüberlegungen, Dissertation

W. Köck (2008), Prävention gegen die Einbringung invasiver gebietsfremder Arten durch Haftungsrecht, branchenbezogene Verhaltenskodizes und Selbstverpflichtungen am Beispiel der Botanischen Gärten und des Gartenbaus, in: Natur und Landschaft (N+L) 83, S. 425-428

W. Born, I. Bräuer et al. (2005), Economic evaluation of biological invasions − a survey, in: Ecological Economics 55: 321-336

D. Ortner (2005), Zur naturschutzrechtlichen Verpflichtung der Verwendung autochthonen Saat- und Pflanzguts bei der Straßenbegleitbegrünung, in: Natur und Recht 27, 91-99

W. Köck (2004), Invasive gebietsfremde Arten − Stand und Perspektiven der Weiterentwicklung und Umsetzung der CBD-Verpflichtungen unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Umsetzung in Deutschland, in: Wolff/Köck (Hrsg.), 10 Jahre Übereinkommen über die biologische Vielfalt − eine Zwischenbilanz, S. 107-125