Green Planet – from Genes to Ecosystems

Plants are the basis of life on our ‘green planet’ and they are important partners of human beings in the ‘ecosystem of Earth’. Climate change, scarcity of resources, the extinction of species, food for the world’s population, and the increasing importance of a plant-based diet are a few examples of the current societal challenges that underline the key relevance of the plant sciences. The future of our planet, and of humankind, will to a great extent depend on our knowledge about the evolution of plant diversity and its further development in the Anthropocene

© Dep. of Botany and Biodiversity Research: seedlings

© Ovidiu Paun: dactylorhiza majalis

© Dep. for Botany and Biodiversity Research: erutrichium nanum

Science in this key research area wants to find answers to the current threats to plant diversity, and at the same time open up new, sustainable ways of using plants to the benefit of humankind. Biodiversity research in general, and studies on natural genetic diversity in particular, are of great relevance in this field. This key research area integrates transdisciplinary approaches ranging from the subcellular level to individual organisms, populations, species and communities, and finally entire ecosystems (from genes to ecosystems). In order to answer the pressing questions outlined, approaches of molecular genetics, cell physiology, ecological and evolutionary genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics, phylogenetics, ecophysiology, morphology, population biology and plant society research are combined with syn-, macro-, and evolutionary ecology.

Research Groups

Research Group / PI Research Topic Department
Stefan Dullinger Plant Migration and Alpine Ecosystems Botany and Biodiversity Research
Franz Essl Bioinvasions, Global Change, Macroecology Botany and Biodiversity Research
Konrad Fiedler Animal Ecology and Biodiversity Botany and Biodiversity Research
Irmgard Greilhuber Mycology Botany and Biodiversity Research
Verena Ibl Cell Biology in Crop Seeds Functional and Evolutionary Ecology
Ingeborg Lang Structural and Functional Plant Cell Biology Functional and Evolutionary Ecology
Ovidiu Paun Plant Ecological Genomics Botany and Biodiversity Research
Michael Schagerl Functional Ecology of Microalgae Functional and Evolutionary Ecology
Hanna Schneeweiss Plant Evolutionary Cytogenetics Botany and Biodiversity Research
Gerald Schneeweiss Plant Biogeography Botany and Biodiversity Research
Jürg Schönenberger Evolution and Phylogenetics of Angiosperms Botany and Biodiversity Research
Hermann Voglmayr Herbarium; fungal systematics and ecology Botany and Biodiversity Research
Steffen Waldherr Computational Methods for Bio-/Chemical Processes Functional and Evolutionary Ecology
Wolfram Weckwerth Systems Theory in Ecology and Biology Functional and Evolutionary Ecology
Stefanie Wienkoop Plant-Microsymbiont Interaction Functional and Evolutionary Ecology