Scientific focus and mission
Background and aims
Environmental sciences are challenged by growing human populations and the resulting food and energy demands, increasing consumption of natural resources, and losses of biodiversity in an era of global climate change. Ecological research contributes to potential solutions and it is a pre-requisite for more sustainable land use, founded in careful assessments of ecosystem adaptation and regeneration. An advanced understanding of interaction networks amongst organisms and their abiotic environment requires mechanistic clarifications of ecosystem processes. Fluxes of energy and elements under human influence attain paramount importance in such context. This requires close co-operations between complementary research disciplines in the experimental analysis of above- and below-ground ecosystem compartments. Relevant disciplines are plant and animal ecology, ecophysiology, microbiology, plant pathology, molecular biology, genetics, soil science, hydrology, climatology, ecosystem research as well as biostatistics and modelling.
TUMmesa aims at addressing current research challenges by
- enabling process-based ecological research and experiments with model ecosystems, their compartments and organisms under controlled conditions;
- understanding biotic interactions across ecosystem compartments;
- and facilitating integrative multi-factorial experiments with complex statistical design.