Independent Research Groups

Biospheric Theory and Modelling
In the group Biospheric Theory and Modelling lead by Axel Kleidon, we explore how the thermodynamic Earth system approach can be applied to different fields and questions in Earth system science. more
Carbon Balance, Ecosystem Research and Forest Management
Ernst-Detlef Schulze, emeritus Director of the institute, focuses  on the relation between plant biodiversity and land management. more
Functional Biogeography
The group, jointly led by Jens Kattge and Max Planck Fellow Christian Wirth, explores plant functional diversity and its role in biogeochemical cycles: how it is affected by climate variation and environmental changes and how it affects vegetation responses. For this purpose, it hosts the TRY Plant Trait Database. more
Hydrology-Biosphere-Climate Interactions
The research of the HydroBioKlim group, led by René Orth, focuses on the interface of soils, plants and the atmosphere. The exchange and feedback processes there can affect food cultivation and water availability, and thus also the economy and society. more
Biogeochemical Systems
The group, led by Emeritus Director Martin Heimann, develops methods to measure greenhouse gases in situ and by remote sensing. It extends the measurement network to remote hot-spot regions and develops and uses numerical models for large-scale quantification of sources and sinks of greenhouse gases. more
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