Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research

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The Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research - UFZ was established in 1991. It has about 1,100 employees in Leipzig, Halle/S. and Magdeburg an annual budget of approximately 100 million euro. The UFZ scientists study the complex interactions between humans and the environment in cultivated and damaged landscapes. The scientists develop concepts and processes to help secure the natural foundations of human life for future generations.

The main locations are in Leipzig, Halle and Magdeburg.

The Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research belongs to the Helmholtz Association. The Helmholtz Association contributes to solving major challenges facing society, science and the economy with top scientific achievements in six research areas: Energy, Earth and Environment, Health, Key Technologies, Structure of Matter, Transport and Space. With about 36,000 employees in 18 research centres and an annual budget of approximately 3.8 billion euro, the Helmholtz Association is Germany's largest scientific organisation. Its work follows in the tradition of the great natural scientist Hermann von Helmholtz (1821–1894).

Research structure[edit]

Research at the UFZ is organized into 38 methodical competence centres, the so-called departments. The large number of departments underlines the large range of approaches at the UFZ. The departments are organized into seven divisions, namely:

  1. Environmental Systems, Computation and Monitoring
  2. Water and Soil Sciences
  3. Terrestrial Ecology
  4. Environmental Technology
  5. Environmental Health
  6. Health Research
  7. Social Sciences

In terms of its fields of research the UFZ focuses on three core subject areas as well as three cross-sectional competence areas (see diagram). These are assigned to the Helmholtz Research Fields of Earth and Environment (Research programme „Terrestrial Environment“ / accounting for 85 percent of UFZ resources), Health (Research Programme “Environmental Health“ / 8 percent) as well as Energy (Research Programmes „Renewable Energies“ and „Technology, Innovation and Society“ / 7 percent).

The research programmes of the Helmholtz Association are evaluated every five years by internationally renowned experts in terms of their scientific excellence and strategic relevance.

Die Forschungsstruktur des UFZ


The research is organised in three core subject areas and three cross-sectional competences:

Core Subject Areas

  1. Land Use | Biodiversity | Ecosystem Services | Renewable Energies
  2. Sustainable Water Resources Management
  3. Chemicals in the Environment | Environmental Health

Cross-sectional Competences

  1. Social Sciences
  2. Monitoring | Observation
  3. Modeling | Visualization


The UFZ is funded by the Federal Government of Germany to 90% and by the German States Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt to 5% respectively.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

  • www.ufz.de - Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research - UFZ