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Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2019-01-01 - 2022-01-06

In agroecosystems, multiple ecosystem services such as soil fertility, pest regulation, crop production and biodiversity conservation need to be balanced to achieve both sustainable development goals and Aichi biodiversity targets. The main global change drivers of biodiversity and ecosystem services in viticultural landscapes are climate change, the invasion of alien (pest) species, land management changes, wine markets and policies. These drivers influence land use decisions at the local and regional level which affect multiple dimensions of biodiversity and the delivery of ecosystem services (ES). We will develop and test model frameworks which integrate different scenarios of land use across spatial scales for future management in viticultural regions from Spain, to France, Germany, Austria and Romania. First, we will organise workshops in each project region to develop stakeholder-driven scenarios which will be used as input for the agent-based models. Second, we will utilize existing knowledge from different European countries to build a predictive model for ES in viticulture. Third, the model will be validated using field measurements of above- and below-ground biodiversity plus the multiple ecosystem services that it provides. This will be done along gradients of landscape complexity and management options in the five European case-study regions. The outcomes of the project will be (i) a conceptual model of the tradeoffs and synergies between multiple biodiversity-related ES in viticulture in relation to local and regional management and landscape structure which informs (ii) a spatially-explicit model integrating winegrowers as agents which influence land use decisions and consequently ES provision in response to different land-use scenarios and (iii) a software decision-support tool for stakeholders in viticulture that provides information on how to manage their crop to enhance biodiversity and multiple ES.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2018-08-01 - 2018-10-31

In the years 2017 and 2018 the sugar beet weevil, Bothynoderes punctiventris, was the most damaging pests of sugar beets in the Eastern parts of Austria. Applicationof synthetic insecticides against this pest did not result in sufficient control. The aim of the project is to investigate alternative and sustainable control strategies against the sugar beet weevil.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2018-07-01 - 2019-03-15

In 2017, glyphosate was approved for another 5 years as a plant protection product in Europe, despite dissenting amongst others from Austria. A national feasibility study for Austria will be done in order to assess the possible ecological and economic effects of an exit or further restriction of use. This study will provide a sound basis for an Austrian action plan on the possible phasing out of glyphosate in plant protection products to mitigate any ecological and economic disadvantages in agriculture. A re-examination of the approval of the active substance, health policy aspects as well as an economic cost estimate of a glyphosate waiver are not the subject of this study.

Supervised Theses and Dissertations