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Mark Rounsevell is Professor of Land Use Change at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Institute of Geography & Geoecology) and Head of IFU’s Land Use Change Research Group. His research focuses on the human dimensions of environmental change, including the analysis of socio-ecological systems, land use and land cover change and the impacts of climate change on natural resources. He combines qualitative, social elicitation methods with social simulation models to undertake experiments on human-environment interactions and works with a number of different modelling approaches from local to global scale levels, both in the present and for future environmental change scenarios.
He coordinates the European Commission funded OPERAs project (OPerationalizing Ecosystem Research Applications, www.operas-project.eu) and contributes to the LUC4C project (Land-use change: assessing the net climate forcing, and options for climate change mitigation and adaptation, luc4c.eu) and IMPRESSIONS project (Impacts and risks from high-end scenarios: Strategies for innovative solutions, www.impressions-project.eu).

He contributes to a number of international research initiatives including being:

  • Co-chair of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity & Ecosystem Services (IPBES) regional assessment for Europe & Central Asia;
  • Co-chair of the Human Dimensions’ Focal Research Group for the Community Surface Dynamics Modelling System (CSDMS) (https://csdms.colorado.edu) ;
  • Lead author to the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th Assessment Reports of Working Group II of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 
Calum Brown researches the processes that cause change in land management and ecosystems. He uses statistical and computational methods to try and understand these processes, and to explore how they might develop in the future. His background is in physics and ecology, and his PhD was on the ecology of tropical rainforests. He still works on forest ecology, but now mainly focuses on human land use and its interactions with climate change. This work involves modelling the ways in which land management decisions are made, attempting to build on knowledge of underlying social and environmental processes.

Richard Fuchs' main research focus is on land cover/use modelling (including land management), with emphasis on dynamics and pathways of land changes. He studies land-climate interactions, for instance how land management affects global climate and vice versa. During his PhD in Wageningen Richard developed the historic land cover/use reconstruction model HILDA (http://www.wur.eu/hilda) which provides a reconstruction of Europe’s land cover/use and its changes of the last century (1900-2010) at 1km spatial resolution.
In the land use change and climate group at IMK-IFU, Richard assesses how global crop production strategies can be optimized to maximize food production and limit environmental degradation.


Sylvia Kratz is program assistant for the Land Use Change and Climate division. Her background is in economics and project management. Before joining KIT IMK-IFU in 2017 she was involved in ecological research and restoration programs for various governmental, as well as non-profit and for profit organizations in Germany, China and the US.

Heera Lee has been a postdoctoral researcher of Land Use Change and Climate research group since June 2017. Her research focuses on the interactions between human decision-making and ecosystem services. Particularly, she has been working on the quantification of cultural ecosystem services using social-media data, and synthesis on relationships among multiple ecosystem services. Also, she has been contributing to the IPBES thematic report (https://www.ipbes.net). Her current project focuses on land-based mitigation strategies in Europe using a regional integrated assessment platform (IAP). Before she came to KIT, she worked for the OPERAs project (http://www.operas-project.eu) and received her PhD degree from the professorship for Land Use Modelling and Ecosystem Services at the University of Bonn with a dissertation titled ‘Analysing Trade-offs between ecosystem services in multi-functional landscapes’.

Bumsuk Seo I received the B.E. and the M.C.P. degrees from the Seoul National University, Republic of Korea and the Ph.D. degree in Biogeographical modelling from the University of Bayreuth, Germany, in 2015. During the PhD study, I participated an international research project TERRECO between Germany and South Korea. Since 2015, I have been a post-doctoral researcher at Kangwon National University, South Korea (2015-2017) and IMK-IFU, KIT, Germany (2017-present). My primary research is about land use and land cover (LULC) modelling at regional to global scales. Research interests include crop modelling, terrestrial ecosystem fluxes, as well as general topics in ecology. I am fascinated by state-of-the-art remote sensing and machine learning techniques and trying to tackle the research questions with them.

 Research themes

  • Understanding land use dynamics under ongoing global socio-ecological changes
  • Developing global agent-based and process-based land use models to project future land use
  • Mapping land use, ecosystem functions, and ecosystem services using cutting-edge remote sensing and machine learning techniques
  • Diagnosis and forecast of crop growth condition and crop yield at large scales
Penelope Whitehorn is a Post-doctoral researcher in the Land Use Change research group at IMK-IFU, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. Her research focuses on the distribution, abundance and health of bumblebees and other pollinators under changing environmental conditions, including land use change. She has a broad interest in anthropogenic impacts on international biodiversity and ecosystem services and a particular interest in the effects of pesticides and their role in the population declines of bumblebees and other beneficial invertebrates.
Karina Winkler is a PhD student in the Land Use Change Climate Research Group since May 2018. Her research focusses on modelling global land change at high resolution, linking land change patterns to management dynamics and their implications for climate change. Her scientific interest include land cover/land use change (esp. agriculture and forests), remote sensing and geospatial data analysis with open source tools.
name title phone e-mail
  mark rounsevellUxl9∂kit edu
Dr. richard fuchsEpr0∂kit edu
BA-hons Business sylvia kratzJhj8∂kit edu
Dr. heera leeRti9∂kit edu
Dr. Ph.D. bumsuk seoIif5∂kit edu
  penelope whitehornIdo7∂kit edu
MSc karina winklerEvl1∂kit edu