The goal of ITES' research is to strengthen the scientific basis for the sustainable use of terrestrial natural resources. ITES explores the functioning of terrestrial environments as interconnected systems of physical, chemical, and biological processes and their response to management using quantitative methods. This requires a broad range of disciplines. The basic units of analysis are landscapes at spatial scales of hectares to many square kilometers, and temporal scales spanning years to centuries. These are the scales relevant to effective land management decisions, and they thus guide the integrative scientific core mission of ITES' research.
In particular, the research of the professorships of ITES addresses the following topics:
Ecosystem Management: Climate change • Plant reproductive ecology • Conservation genetics • Land management • Ecosystem services
Forest Ecology: Forest dynamics • Mountain ecosystems • Population dynamics • Global change • Ecological processes
Landuse Engineering: Eco-efficiency models • Steep slope forest operations technology •Spatial decision support systems • GIS-based modeling • Land-use models
Physics of Environmental Systems: Catchment hydrology • Biogeochemistry • Geomorphology • Evolutionary ecology • Analysis of environmental data
Soil Protection: Behavior and effects of essential and toxic trace elements in soil-plant systems • Pollutant transfer with soil erosion •Treatment and management of polluted soil • Biofortification