In an accompanying exhibition organised with the participation of researchers from the Helmholtz Association, issues currently being explored in biodiversity research are presented to the public in a vivid and lucid manner.
"The Helmholtz Association has set itself the task of conducting research to provide for a secure future and this is a responsibility we take very seriously. Thus we established the Helmholtz Association biodiversity working group, where biologists, economists and social scientists are cooperating closely so that the insights they gain can be translated into solid recommendations for action,"explains the Helmholtz Associations President, Prof. Jürgen Mlynek.
The exhibition features twelve huge columns, each of them devoted to portraying a particular scientist who has been instrumental in driving progress in biodiversity research in Germany. The twelve scientists chosen stand for their many fellow researchers around the world who are dedicated to understanding the complex web of life and gaining knowledge that can help us preserve biodiversity and develop strategies for the sustainable exploitation of natural resources. Four of the scientists portrayed in the exhibition work at Helmholtz Research Centres.
Dr. Julian Gutt of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research is trying to determine how climate change affects the sensitive food chains in the Arctic and Antarctic oceans; he discovered a unique ecosystem under the Larsen Ice Shelf on a recent expedition to the Antarctic. Dr. Josef Settele of the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) is the coordinator of the biggest European biodiversity research project, ALARM, which aims to document the loss of species in Europe and identify its causes.
Dr. Nele Lienhoop, a social scientist also working at the UFZ, is endeavouring to identify the value biological diversity has for the population of a region and draw up recommendations for public authorities to create ecological "niches" that can acts as refuges for endangered species. Finally, lepidopterist Dr. Xiushan Li, who is currently a visiting scientist at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, observes the behaviour and population dynamics of endangered butterfly species and devises concepts for monitoring and protective measures.Exhibition:
1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. from 19 to 26 May, and daily between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. from 27 to 30 May.
The brochure Millions of Ways of Life - Research for Biological Diversity, commissioned by the Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF), also introduces other projects being undertaken by Helmholtz Association researchers.
The Environment Ministry (BMU) will present the preliminary results of the pilot study on the value of biodiversity at a press conference on 29 May 2008. The TEEB project (The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity), commissioned by the BMU and the European Union, is managed by Pavan Sukhdev, head of Deutsche Bank’s Global Market Centre in London. The scientific contributions to the pilot study were co-coordinated by the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ).If you have questions regarding the content of the TEEB Report, please contact:
The Helmholtz Association helps solve major, pressing challenges facing society, science and the economy with top scientific achievements in six research areas: Energy, Earth and Environment, Health, Key Technologies, Structure of Matter, Transport and Space. With 25,700 employees in 15 research centres and an annual budget of around EUR 2.3 billion, the Helmholtz Association is Germanys largest scientific organisation. Its work follows in the tradition of the great natural scientist Hermann von Helmholtz (1821-1894).
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