German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv)
Biodiversity is the essence of life on earth and is the basis of many ecosystem services needed by mankind. The four main questions of biodiversity sciences are (i) how can we detect and quantify biodiversity? (ii) how does biodiversity emerge? (iii) what are the consequences of biodiversity for the functioning of ecosystems? (iv) how can we safeguard biodiversity? We propose to develop iDiv, the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research, as a hub for international biodiversity science with its central mission to promote theory-driven synthesis and data-driven theory. iDiv will be based in Leipzig and jointly hosted by the University of Leipzig (UL), the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU), and the Friedrich Schiller University Jena (FSU). The applying universities have a strong tradition in biodiversity sciences, manifested in their institutional strategies. Their expertise, as exemplified by the leadership in many cooperative biodiversity projects, is strongly enhanced by existing close cooperations with eight non-university applicants. The scientific core of iDiv is formed by five research areas (A) Theory in Biodiversity Sciences, (B) Interaction Ecology, (C) Evolution and Adaptation, including an externally funded professorship on Physiological Diversity, (D) Biodiversity Conservation, including an externally funded professorship on Ecosystem Services, and (E) Biodiversity Synthesis. These five research areas, each representing one or two research groups will form a Synthesis Centre (sDiv) and are supported by central services including biodiversity informatics and bioinformatics units. The research training group of young biodiversity researchers, yDiv, has been designed to educate a new generation of scientists in transdisciplinary biodiversity research. iDiv has an efficient governance structure, which will ensure that the scientific community, both in Germany and worldwide, will benefit from the synergies achieved.
biodiversity, iDiv, sDiv, yDiv
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