Dr. Christian KÖRNER
Head, Section Plant Ecology, Institute of Botany, University of Basel
Graduated with a Ph.D. in plant sciences at the University of Innsbruck. His major research fields are alpine ecology, forest ecology and comparative plant ecology of biomes worldwide. He represents a process oriented, functional approach to ecology which aims at deciphering the mechanisms by which plants master their environmental challenges. After years of research in the Alps, the Caucasus and Sweden, and overseas works (e.g. Australia, New Zealand, New Guinea, Argentina) Christian Körner was appointed to a chair in plant sciences at the University of Basel, Switzerland in 1989. In a number of experimental works he explored the above tasks in the context of rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations and biodiversity. Körner published over 250 articles in international journals, edited several books and became known for his standard textbook 'Alpine Plant Life' (Springer). He is editor in chief of Oecologia, worked on editorial boards of high profile journals such as Science and chaired the Swiss climate research forum Proclim for several years. Since 2000, he directs GMBA, the global mountain biodiversity assessment of DIVERSITAS. Körner is a member of several academies of science (e.g. the Austrian and the German Leopoldina), was plenary speaker at large international conferences and most recently was a guest professor at Yale University.