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Prof. Dr. Christine Schmitt im Portrait vor dem Panorama des Inns und der Stadt Passau.

Professor Christine Schmitt

Professor Christine Schmitt has been Chaired Professor of Physical Geography with a focus on Human-Environment Research at the University of Passau since April 2021. She is an active member of the scientific advisory board of the Society for Tropical Ecology (gtö) and of the BayWISS Joint Academic Partnership Life Sciences and Green Technologies and has experience in policy support at an international level. Before this, she served as senior researcher at the Center for Development Research (ZEF) of the University of Bonn. In her research she focuses on vegetation geography, global change and sustainable development.

Professor Christine Schmitt has been Chaired Professor of Physical Geography with a focus on Human-Environment Research at the University of Passau since April 2021. She is an active member of the scientific advisory board of the Society for Tropical Ecology (gtö) and of the BayWISS Joint Academic Partnership Life Sciences and Green Technologies and has experience in policy support at an international level. Before this, she served as senior researcher at the Center for Development Research (ZEF) of the University of Bonn. In her research she focuses on vegetation geography, global change and sustainable development.

"I conduct my research on biodiversity and the ecosystem services of forests and forest landscapes in the tropics, particularly in East Africa and Europe. I am interested in understanding how environmental factors – e.g., climate change – and human uses affect the distribution of individual plant species, biodiversity patterns and the functions and services of forest ecosystems. Through my research, I want to help to develop strategies for the long-term conservation and sustainable use of species and ecosystems."

More on the research

Professor Christine Schmitt conducts multi-scale research on the biodiversity and ecosystem services of forests and forest landscapes while taking into account current environmental changes and societal needs to support the conservation and use of species and natural resources. Her geographical focus is East Africa and Europe.

More information about her research:

www.phil.uni-passau.de/en/geography-section/team/prof-dr-christine-schmitt/

Publications

  • Brackhane S, Reif A, Zin E & Schmitt CB. 2021. Are natural disturbances represented in strictly protected areas in Germany? Global Ecology and Conservation, e01436: 21. (Open Access)

  • Cuni-Sanchez A & 101 co-authors, including Schmitt CB. 2021. High aboveground carbon stock of African tropical montane forests. Nature, 596: 536-542.

  • Aleman JC & 32 co-authors, including Schmitt CB. 2020. Floristic evidence for alternative biome states in tropical Africa. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 117(45): 28183-28190.

  • Callo-Concha D, Jaenicke H, Schmitt CB & Denich M. 2020. Food and non-food biomass production, processing and use in sub-Saharan Africa: Towards a regional bioeconomy, Editorial. Sustainability, 12(5): 2013. (Open Access)

  • Habel JC, Nzau JM, Apfelbeck B, Bendzko T, Fischer C, Kimatu JN, Mwakumanya MA, Maghenda M, Mulwa RK, Rieckmann M, Shauri H, Teucher M & Schmitt CB. 2020. Land scarcity, communication gaps and institutional confusions influence the loss of biodiversity in south-eastern Kenya. Biodiversity and Conservation, 29: 3835-3841. (Open Access)

Research Stories

The hole in the building of the regional administration in the city of Mykolaiv is symbolic of the heavy fighting currently taking place at the front lines in the south of the country.

Alina Kasinska fled from the heavily bombarded city of Mykolaiv. Thanks to funding from the VolkswagenStiftung, together with Olha Komelina and scholars from Passau and the USA, she will study the war's impacts upon natural reserves. With video

Portrait von Prof. Dr. Christine Schmitt und Dr. João De Deus Vidal Júnior.

He almost had to give up his research because of the financial crisis in Brazil. But thanks to a Humboldt Fellowship, biologist Dr João De Deus Vidal Júnior can continue working on tropical mountain regions - with Professor Christine Schmitt.

View from a mountain massif of the Taita Hills in southern Kenya: Data that Prof. Dr. Schmitt collected here in 2018 was included in the "Nature" study. Photo: Schmitt

Professor Christine Schmitt, geographer at the University of Passau, is part of an international research team that proves - in a "Nature" article - that tropical African mountain forests store more carbon than previously thought.

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