German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv)


FunDivEUROPE (Functional Significance of Forest Biodiversity in Europe) is a collaborative project within the European Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). The overall scientific goal of FunDivEUROPE is to quantify the effects of forest biodiversity on ecosystem functions and services in major European forest types. A major aim is to understand and quantify how tree species diversity can be used to foster the provision of ecosystem services such as timber production, carbon sequestration and freshwater. To achieve this, scientists will combine field data sampled on all European tree diversity experiments (Experimental Platform) and on a newly established network covering a gradient of tree diversity in established forest stands (Exploratory Platform). In addition, national forest inventory data will be analyzed for potential diversity effects (Inventory Platform). Besides these scientific Platforms, FunDivEUROPE seeks to strengthen the science-policy interface via a Knowledge Transfer Platform.

Research focus

  • Determination how key ecosystem services - provisioning of timber and biomass, maintenance of nutrient cycling , maintenance of hydrological cycles and provision of clean water - depend on the tree diversity of European forests
  • Implications of tree species diversity for the vulnerability of ecosystem services under climate change

Key data

  • Location: Five experimental sites and natural diversity gradients in six European forest regions. FunDivEUROPE is coordinated by Prof. Michael Scherer-Lorenzen, Faculty of Biology - Geobotany, University of Freiburg, Germany
  • Platform type: Experimental Platform with five tree diversity experiments in Europe: Finland, 2x Germany (BIOTREE, Kreinitz), Belgium, France. Exploratory Platform in natural forests with six sites across Europe: Finland, Poland, Germany, Romania, Italy and Spain. Inventory Platform with harmonized datasets from six regions: Finland, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden and Wallonia.
  • Research groups involved: In total 24 partners from 15 countries, Christian Wirth, Helge Bruelheide and Harald Augeare involved as workpackage leader and site managers, respectively.


Prof. Dr. Michael Scherer-Lorenzen

Prof. Dr. Christian Wirth

Prof. Dr. Helge Bruelheide

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