Karen Pedersen

Karen Pedersen M.Sc.

+49 6151 16-75413

Schnittspahnstraße 3
64287 Darmstadt

Raum: B1|01 261


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ECOFRUIT: Managing ecosystem services for fruit production in different European climates

I want to understand the structure and functioning of ecological networks in agriculture with the perspective to improve the resilience of modern food production systems. How does biodiversity contribute to sustainable agriculture? How do organisms that provide crucial ecosystem services, such as biological pest control or pollination, react to management intensification, climate change and landscape homogenization? To what extent do agri-environmental schemes improve the quality of their habitats and facilitate their services?

As a PhD student of the EcoNetLab I study the interactions and population dynamics of herbivores and associated natural enemy assemblages in intensive fruit production systems. Investigations focus on the effects of local management schemes, landscape patterns and climate on arthropod communities and species traits in south-German apple orchards. My PhD project forms part of the European ECOFRUIT research initiative, promoted by the BiodivERsA network (www.biodiversa.org), to understand biodiversity dynamics and manage ecosystem services linking scientific advancements to policy and practice.


  • Universität Freiburg, Germany (Prof. Dr. Alexandra-Maria Klein, Dr. Virginie Boreux, Dr. Iris Motzke), www.nature.uni-freiburg.de/forschung/Pollination_Apfelplantagen
  • Universitad de Barcelona, Spain (Dr. Jordi Bosch, Prof. Anselm Rodrigo Domínguez)
  • Universitet Stockholms, Sweden (Prof. Dr. Peter Hambäck, Ulrika Samnegård)
  • Universitad de Oviedo, Spain (Prof. Dr. Daniel García, Dr. Marcos Miñarro)

Curriculum Vitae

Since March 2015: PhD student Ecological Networks, TU Darmstadt (Prof. Dr. Nico Blüthgen), Topic: “Managing ecosystem services for fruit production in different European climates”, Supervisor: PD Dr. Karsten Mody

December 2014 – March 2015: research assistant at the Institute of Plant Diseases and Plant Protection, Section of Entomology, Leibniz University of Hannover

April – September 2014: working in alpine permaculture & organic horticulture at Krameterhof in Austria and in Switzerland

2011 – 2014: M.Sc. Biodiversity, Ecology & Evolution, Georg-August University Göttingen

Thesis: “Diversity & service of bee pollinators in agricultural landscapes: Configuration vs. farming practice” (Dept. of Agroecology Göttingen, Prof. Dr. Teja Tscharntke)

2012 – 2013: ERASMUS student at University of Vienna focusing on animal ecology

2008 – 2011: B.Sc. Biodiversity & Ecology, Georg-August University Göttingen

Thesis: “Functional importance of different land cover types for bees” (Dept. of Agroecology Göttingen, Prof. Dr. Teja Tscharntke)

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