German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv)

Biodiversity Economics

The Biodiversity Economics research group aims at improving the scientific basis for establishing sustainability in human-nature relationships. Main areas of research are the sustainable use of renewable natural resources (e.g. marine fish stocks, rangelands, forests) and the conservation of biodiversity from regional to global scales. We study how economic incentives shape human behaviour towards nature, how sustainability – understood as justice in human-nature relationships – can be conceptualized, and how economic policy instruments could contribute to this. Our methodical expertise comprises quantitative ecological-economic modelling, dynamic optimization, statistics, economic experiments, conceptual modelling, and approaches from game theory and capital theory. Our research group is internationally well connected. We engage in integrative interdisciplinary research with natural and social scientists and researchers from the humanities.


15.09.2020 | Guest Editorial

The Journal of Environmental Economics and Management (JEEM) released a call for papers for a Special Issue on Inequality and the Environment. Guest editors are, among others, Martin Quaas and Jasper Meya. We invite innovative economic research on links between economic inequality & environmental policy, e.g. related to biodiversity change, air pollution or climate change. Submissions until 28.02.2021.

28.08.2020 | Workshop

The Biodiversity Economics Group hosts the EAERE Workshop on The Economics of Inequality and the Environment (September 21–23, 2020). In the workshop 25 international experts will explore links between environmental policy and economic inequality. The workshop is organized in a hybrid format and can be followed online via ZOOM. The workshop program is now available.

22.06.2020 | Paper at SPIEGEL ONLINE
„Faktor Mensch“

Voluntary contact reductions would stabilize the COVID-19 pandemic in Germany, but at higher rates of infection and death. Optimal regulation would substantially restrict physical social contacts at the beginning of the pandemic, well beyond the voluntary restrictions for self-protection and the protection of others. SPIEGEL ONLINE, one of the leading German newspapers, reports on the new study by Martin Quaas, Jasper Meya, Hanna Schenk (iDiv, UL) with co-authors from Kiel and Hamburg (press release). 

22.05.2020 | BMBF funding

Biodiversity and natural capital contribute fundamentally to human well-being. So far, societal decision-making only partly takes these values into account due to information gaps and uncertainties. To address this, the Biodiversity Economics Group receives funding from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) to coordinate the design of an inter- and transdisciplinary project „Towards a comprehensive valuation of natural capital in Germany: Methods and approaches to deal with limited information and uncertainty“ (ValuGaps).

09.04.2020 | Article in Science
A glimpse into the future of tropical forests

Tropical forests are a hotspot of biodiversity. Against the backdrop of climate change, their protection plays a special role and it is important to predict how such diverse forests may change over decades and even centuries. This is exactly what researchers at the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), Leipzig University (UL) and other international research institutions have achieved. Their results have been published in the scientific journal Science.

08.04.2020 | Open Position at IfW Kiel
Doctoral Researcher in "Evolutionary fishery economics and management"

The Kiel Institute for the World Economy seeks applications for a position as Doctoral Researcher in its research center The Environment and Natural Resources. The vacant position is part of the DFG Research Training Group 2501 on Translational Evolutionary Research and in cooperation with the Biodiversity Economics Group at the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig. More information can be found here.

06.02.2020 | Open Position
Doctoral Researcher in "Resource Economics"

The Biodiversity Economics Group is looking for a doctoral researcher to join an international team of resource economists within the new collaborative project CRaMoRes – Changing risks and mobile common pool resources: Economic analysis of resource-user behavior and policy instruments for sustainability. More information can be found here.

22.01.2020 | Workshop
The Economics of Inequality and the Environment

The Biodiversity Economics Group co-organizes the EAERE Post-Conference Workshop on The Economics of Inequality and the Environment (Berlin area; September 21–24, 2020). The workshop will explore links between environmental policy and economic inequality. It seeks to delineate lessons for environmental policy, to identify knowledge gaps for further research, and to contribute towards building a research community on the inequality-environment nexus. It will bring together a focused group of approximately 25 international experts.  Paper submissions are welcome until March 15th of 2020 to jasper.meya[at] Further information can be found in the Workshop Flyer.

20.12.2019 | Article
Distance regulation for wind power

In the "Tagesspiegel Background", economists Jasper Meya, iDiv, and Paul Neetzow, Humboldt University of Berlin, argue that the nationwide minimum distance for wind power plants puts pressure on the federal states to justify the energy transition. This could even reduce the acceptance of wind energy.

11.10.2019 | Award
For his findings on ‘Inequality and the Value of Nature’ Jasper Meya, PostDoc in the Biodiversity Economics Group, receives the Albrecht-Daniel-Thaer-prize for outstanding dissertations at the Thaer-Institut of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.

09.10.2019 | Report
German fishermen’s scepticism towards EU impedes compliance with its regulations

Game of chance experiment: In a relationship with an unpopular regulator, the truth is somewhat elastic.

22.08.2019 | Report
Small-scale fisheries’ large contribution to food security

Report by Kira Lancker, PostDoc Biodiversity Economics at iDiv and UL, and first author of two new publications in Food Policy and PLoS ONE.


Head of Research Group
Phone: mail to person +49 341 9733249
Administrative Assistant
Phone: mail to person +49 341 9733247

Postal adress

German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig
Puschstrasse 4
04103 Leipzig


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