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Latest Projects

Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2019-12-12 - 2020-12-11

Our goal is to develop a decision-analytic model to inform planning of hunting quotas for red deer. The model accounts for the wishes of diverse stakeholder groups. This project closes the gap between science and practice of wildlife management. The model will improve understanding of the following: 1) Conflicts among stakeholders regarding hunting quotas and their outcomes. 2) Critical uncertainties for determining hunting quotas. 3) Optimal quotas for satisfying diverse stakeholders. The proposed management question is: What is the annual hunting quota for red deer that will maximize the satisfaction of diverse stakeholder groups while accounting for the condition of forests, livestock, …, along with density of red deer, wild boar, and wolves?
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2019-03-01 - 2021-02-28

Vienna is not only the capital of nearly two million inhabitants but also a hotspot of biodiversity. Thereby urban green areas and their management are highly relevant. The public transport operator Wiener Linien, is in charge of large areas along the traffic routes, which may be important as habitat and migration corridor for numerous plants and animals. Therefore, the question arises which diversity can be observed on those areas referring to the indicator groups plants, wild bees, butterflies and grasshoppers and how can the management of these areas be improved. To answer these questions the species composition of 20 sampling sites will be recorded and analysed. A set of measures for an optimized management of these areas will be developed along with stakeholders involved in the implementation.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2020-02-01 - 2024-01-31

Stomata are tiny pores on the surface of plant leaves and play a central role in global water and carbon cycles. The pores cover less than 5% of the leaf area but facilitate the majority of the exchange of gases between the atmosphere and terrestrial vegetation. The opening of stomata is adjusted to provide CO2 for photosynthesis and to limit water loss. This process exhibits transient responses under fluctuating environmental conditions. The speed at which stomata respond influences productivity and water use efficiency of both crops and natural ecosystems. Although stomatal responses are a target for crop improvement, we lack a clear description of the process, impeding its complete mechanistic understanding. Novel temporal 3D imaging can address the need for a better description of stomatal movements. By complementing fast high-resolution X-ray microcomputed tomography (µCT) with fluorescence microscopy, we will provide in vivo 3D imaging of variations in epidermal cell size and shape and its effects on stomatal movements, scaling from subcellular to whole leaf traits. To fully harness the high volume of data generated by µCT, we will develop novel computational methods to automatically segment images and track single 3D cells over time. This project will answer long-standing questions about stomatal movements and will generate basic knowledge on how to improve stomatal responses under dynamic environments in order to increase net productivity and water-use efficiency.

Supervised Theses and Dissertations