BIGER – BIodiversity and BioGEochemistry of Riverine landscapes

Leader: Thomas Hein 
Deputy: Elisabeth Bondar-Kunze

BIGER WG Homepage:

Riverine landscapes are exposed to multiple stressors, such as changes in the hydrological regime, hydromorphological changes, human overuse, altered nutrient and organic matter inputs from the catchment, and climate change. As a consequence, freshwater ecosystems are highly endangered and sustainable management approaches are urgently needed.

Our research group “Biodiversity and Biogeochemistry of Riverine landscapes (BIGER)” studies the interactive effects of these stressors related to spatial effects and long-term changes on biogeochemical processes and biodiversity in running water systems and wetlands considering the interaction with socio-ecological aspects and aquatic ecosystem management.

Key research areas

  • Metacommunities and Meta-Ecosystems
  • Nutrient and carbon biogeochemistry and GHG emissions
  • Ecohydrology
  • Biodiversity and species distribution
  • Metapopulation Dynamics and Genetics
  • Algal and fish ecology
  • Multiple stressor effects
  • Restoration ecology
  • Interactions between river systems and societies
  • Ecosystem services
  • Sustainable management      
  • Freshwater aquaculture
  • Floodplain ecology
  • Connectivity research

Key Persons


  • Damiano Baldan
  • Laura Coulson
  • Li-Chin Lee 
  • Risper Ondiek
  • Renata Pinto
  • Stefan Preiner
  • Matthias Pucher
  • Yu-Ting Shih
  • Tz-Ching Yeh
Retreat 2023

Retreat 2023