Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg

Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg is an efficient, modern university, which maintains the highest requirements for teaching and research in social sciences and humanities as well as in natural sciences. The University invests into renowned scientists, high-tech equipment, and a modern research environment to foster research, research-training and cooperation with industry, policy makers, and public actors. About 2000 scientists are employed to conduct basic and applied research in various thematic areas. Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg executes research grants funded by national, EU, and international funding organizations as well as by industry with a total volume of more than 50 Mio. € per year. Experienced in EU-funded projects from FP3 onward, the University keeps ready an EU-office with highly qualified administrative staff to support EU project management and execution. The research will be carried out at iDiv, the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv). iDiv is one of six research centres funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). The scientific core of iDiv is formed by five research areas (Theory in Biodiversity Sciences, Ecological Interactions, Evolution and Adaptation, Conservation Biology, and Biodiversity Synthesis) to follow its central mission of promoting theory-driven experiments and synthesis and data-driven theory. iDiv is jointly hosted by the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU), the Friedrich Schiller University Jena (FSU), and the University of Leipzig (UL) and supported by eight non-university institutions.

Overall, MLU brings in expertise in developing Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs), being currently one of our major research topics. MLU is also very experienced in organizing workshops.

Relevant previous projects or activities

  • 2010-2014: “Biodiversity of Freshwater Ecosystems: Status, Trends, Pressures, and Conservation Priorities (BioFresh)” Lead of WP5: “Climate Change Impact on Freshwater Biodiversity” and working coordination. BioFresh is a large scale integration project funded by the European Union under the 7th Framework Programme, Theme 6: Environment including Climate Change,
  • 2011-2014: Freshwater Diversity Identification for Europe (FREDIE) (Barcoding project in cooperation with “Zoologisches Forschungsmuseum Alexander Koenig, Bonn” and “Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin”) (SAW Project 2011, Leibniz Gemeinschaft)

Project Members

Jörg Freyhof

Dr. Jörg Freyhof (male), PhD in ecology from the University of Bonn with a special focus on biodiversity. He is the Executive Director of the Group on Earth Observations - Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON). He was the working coordinator of the European FP 7 project BioFresh dealing with freshwater biodiversity and managed several other projects. He has a vast experience in various aspects of ecosystem change, biodiversity assessments and European environmental policy. Dr. Freyhof, with a large team of international colleagues, developed the initial set of candidate Essential Biodiversity Variables and he has profound knowledge in global biodiversity, especially freshwater biodiversity as well as a large international networks. In his team, he is supported by an GIS specialist and web-designer as well as by a secretary and logistic manager, which will help to organize the EBV workshops within the project. See his CV at


 Relevant publications

  • Pereira, H. M., Ferrier, S., Walters, M., Geller, G., Jongman R. H. G., Scholes, R. J., Bruford, M., Brummitt, N., Butchart, S. H. M., Cardoso, A., Coops, N. C., Dulloo, E., Faith, D. P., Freyhof, J., Gregory, R. D., Heip, C., Höft, R., Hurtt, G., Jetz, W., Karp, D., McGeoch, M. A., Obura, D., Onoda, Y., Pettorelli, N., Reyers, B., Sayre, R., Scharlemann, J. P.W., Stuart, S. N., Turak, E., Walpole, M. & Wegmann, M. (2013). Essential biodiversity variables for global earth observation. Science, 339: 277-278.
  • Markovic, D., S. Carrizo, J. Freyhof, N. Cid, L. Szabolcs, M. Scholz, H. Kasperdius & W. Darwall. (2014). Europe’s freshwater biodiversity under climate change: distribution shifts and conservation needs. Diversity and Distributions, DOI: 10.1111/ddi.12232
  • Filipe, A. F., Markovic, D., Pletterbauer, F., Tisseuil, C., De Wever, A., Schmutz, S., Bonada, N. & Freyhof J. 2013. Forecasting fish distribution along stream networks: brown trout (Salmo trutta) in Europe. Diversity and Distributions, (DOI: 10.11, 1–13. doi:10.1111/ddi.12086)