University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna

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University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna
Universität für Bodenkultur Wien
BOKU Logo.png
Former names
Hochschule für Bodenkultur
Motto Universität des Lebens
Motto in English
University of Life
Type Public
Established 1872 (1872)
Rector Martin Gerzabek
Academic staff
about 2,000
Administrative staff
about 500
Students about 12,000
Location Vienna, Austria

The University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, or simply BOKU (derived from its German name, Universität für Bodenkultur Wien, German pronunciation: [ˌunivɛʁziˈtɛːt fyːɐ̯ ˈboːdn̩kʊlˌtuːɐ̯ viːn], literally Vienna University for Soil Culture), founded in 1872, is "an education and research centre for renewable resources" in Vienna.[1] There are currently around 12,000 students enrolled at BOKU.


University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Vienna in 1896
University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, Gregor Mendel building
University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, Wilhelm Exner building
University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, Guttenberg building

The original campus was built in 1896 in the Türkenschanzpark in Vienna's 18th and 19th districts. The Departments of Sustainable Agriculture, Soil Science, Horticulture, and Animal Husbandry are still headquartered at this original campus. Another campus, located at Muthgasse near the Heiligenstadt underground station, is the headquarters for the biotechnology, chemistry, plant sciences, water resource management, waste management and food sciences departments. A new building with chemistry and food sciences laboratories, facilities, and lecture halls was completed at this campus in 2009. There is also a research facility in Tulln, north of the city, with biotechnology and agricultural sciences laboratories and facilities. There are several other locations the university controls: Lunz Water Cluster, Rosalia study centre, Knödelhütte forest school and currently Augasse, Vienna, shared with other universities, where the biggest auditorium is located.

Conversion to European Union University Structure[edit]

During the 2004/2005 academic year, the university began the switch to the European Union system of higher education (Universitätsgesetz (UG) 2002), meaning that they initiated a three-tier system of studies. From that point on, the university offered bachelor's degrees, master's degrees, and doctoral/PhD degrees. This was a change from the older Austrian system of Diplomstudien, in which graduates left the University with a diploma representing something more specialized and involved than a bachelor's degree, but less so than a master's degree. In the years from 2005 to 2009, the last of the Diplom students completed their studies at the University, and no new Diplom studies were begun.

The changeover also restructured the faculty and department organization at BOKU. The existing 40 "institutes" of faculty were converted to 13 "departments," although there are currently 15 departments at the university.


  • Department of Material Sciences and Process Engineering (Department für Materialwissenschaften und Prozesstechnik)
    • Institute of Wood Technology and Renewable Materials
    • Institute of Physics and Materials Science (IPM)
    • Institute for Chemical and Energy Engineering (IVET)
    • Institute of Molecular Modeling and Simulation (MMS)
  • Department of Biotechnology (Department für Biotechnologie)
    • 12 Research groups
    • Austrian Center of Biological Resources and Applied Mycology
    • Pilot plant
    • Christian Doppler-Laboratory for Biotechnology of Glycerol
  • Department of Water, Atmosphere and Environment (Department Wasser-Atmosphäre-Umwelt)
    • Institute of Sanitary Engineering and Water Pollution Control (SIG)
    • Institute of Hydrobiology and Aquatic Ecosystem Management (IHG)
    • Institute of Waste Management (ABF-BOKU)
    • Institute of Meteorology (BOKU-Met)
    • Institute of Hydraulics and Rural Water Management (IHLW)
    • Institute of Water Management, Hydrology and Hydraulic Engineering (IWHW)
    • Werkstätten der Wasserbauinstitute
    • Institute of Safety and Risk Sciences
  • Department of Nanobiotechnology (Department für Nanobiotechnologie)
    • BIMat
    • Biophysics
    • Institute for Synthetic Bioarchitectures
  • Department of Chemistry (Department für Chemie)
    • Division of Analytical Chemistry (DCH/AC)
    • Division of Biochemistry (DCH/BC)
    • Division of Organic Chemistry (DCH/OC)
    • Division of Chemistry of Renewable Resources
  • Department of Integrative Biology and Biodiversity Research (Department für Integrative Biologie und Biodiversitätsforschung)
    • Institute of Botany (Botany)
    • Institute of Wildlife Biology and Game Management (IWJ)
    • Institute of Zoology
    • Institute for Integrative Nature Conservation Research
    • Institute of Mathematics (IMA)
  • Department of Food science and Technology (Department für Lebensmittelwissenschaften und -technologie)
    • Institute of Food Technology
    • Institute of Food Science
  • Department of Landscape, Spatial and Infrastructure Sciences (Department für Raum, Landschaft und Infrastruktur)
    • Institute of Applied Statistics and Computing (IASC)
    • Institute of Landscape Architecture (ILA)
    • Institute of Landscape Development, Recreation and Conservation Planning (ILEN)
    • Institute of Landscape Planning (ILAP)
    • Institute of Spatial Planning and Rural Development (IRUB)
    • Institute for Transport Studies (IVe)
    • Institute of Surveying, Remote Sensing and Land Information (IVFL)
  • Department of Economics and Social Sciences (Department für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften)
    • Institute for Sustainable Economic Development
    • Institute of Forest, Environmental and Natural Resource Policy
    • Institute of Agricultural and Forestry Economics
    • Institute of Production and Logistics
    • Institute of Marketing and Innovation
    • Institute of Law
  • Department of Sustainable Agricultural Systems (Department für Nachhaltige Agrarsysteme)
    • Institute of Agricultural Engineering
    • Division of Livestock Sciences (NUWI)
    • Division of Organic Farming (IFÖL)
  • Department of Civil Engineering and Natural Hazards (Department für Bautechnik und Naturgefahren)
    • Institute of Mountain Risk Engineering (IAN)
    • Institute of Applied Geology (IAG)
    • Institute of Geotechnical Engineering (IGT)
    • Institute of Soil Bioengineering and Landscape Construction (IBLB)
    • Institute of Structural Engineering (IKI)
  • University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna
    Department of Forest- and Soil Sciences (Department für Wald- und Bodenwissenschaften)
    • Institute of Soil Research (IBF)
    • Institute of Forest Ecology (IFE)
    • Institute of Silviculture (WALDBAU)
    • Institute of Forest Growth (WAFO)
    • Institute of Forest Engineering (FT)
    • Institute of Forest Entomology, Forest Pathology and Forest Protection (IFFF)
    • Forest Demonstration Centre
  • Department of Crop Sciences (Department für Nutzpflanzenwissenschaften)
    • Division of Agronomy
    • Division of Vegetables and Ornamentals
    • Division of Plant Protection
    • Division of Plant Breeding
    • Division of Viticulture and Pomology
    • Experimental Farm Groß-Enzersdorf
  • Department for Agrobiotechnology, IFA-Tulln (Interuniversitäres Department für Agrarbiotechnologie, IFA-Tulln)
    • Institute of Biotechnology in Plant Production
    • Institute of Natural Materials Technology
    • Center for Analytical Chemistry
    • Institute of Environmental Biotechnology
    • Institute of Biotechnology in Animal Production
    • Institute of Animal Nutrition, Livestock Products, and Nutrition Physiology (TTE)
  • Department of Applied Genetics and Cell Biology (Department für angewandte Genetik und Zellbiologie)
    • Division of Molecular Cell Biology and Glycobiotechnology
    • Division of Plant Genetics and Cell Biology
    • Division of Microbial Genetics and Pathogen Interactions
    • Vienna Institute of BioTechnology VIBT


Bachelor programmes[edit]

  • Food Science and Biotechnology
  • Landscape Architecture and Landscape Planning
  • Forestry
  • Wood and Fibre Technology
  • Environment and Bio-Resources Management
  • Civil Engineering and Water Management
  • Agricultural Sciences
  • Equine Sciences

German Master programmes[edit]

  • Wildlife Ecology and Wildlife Management
  • Food Science and Technology
  • Biotechnology
  • Landscape Architecture and Landscape Planning
  • Phytomedicine
  • Forest Sciences
  • Wood Technology and Management
  • Environment and Bio-Resources Management
  • Civil Engineering and Water Management
  • Plant Sciences
  • Livestock Sciences
  • Agricultural and Food Economy
  • Double degree programme "Material and Energetic Exploitation of Renewable Raw Materials (NAWARO)"
  • Alpine Natural Dangers / Watershed Regulation
  • Organic Agricultural Systems and Agroecology (AgrEco-Organic) und Organic Agricultural Systems and Agroecology (EUR-Organic)

English Master programmes[edit]

  • Mountain Forestry
  • Water Management and Environmental Engineering
  • Applied Limnology
  • Organic Agricultural Systems and Agroecology (AgrEco-Organic) und Organic Agricultural Systems and Agroecology (EUR-Organic)

International Master programmes[edit]

  • Natural Resources Management and Ecological Engineering
  • Applied Limnology
  • Environmental Sciences - Soil, Water, Biodiversity (ENVEURO)
  • DDP EM in Animal Breeding and Genetics
  • Safety in the Food Chain
  • DDP MSc European Forestry
  • Horticultural Sciences
  • Double degree programme "Material and Energetic Exploitation of Renewable Raw Materials (NAWARO)"
  • Viticulture, Enology and Wine Economics
  • Organic Agricultural Systems and Agroecology (AgrEco-Organic) und Organic Agricultural Systems and Agroecology (EUR-Organic)
  • Sustainability in Agriculture, Food Production and Food Technology in the Danube Region

Doctoral Programmes[edit]

  • Doctoral studies of Social and Economic Sciences
  • Doctoral studies of Natural Resources and Life Sciences
  • PhD in Biomolecular Technology of Proteins (BioToP)
  • Doctoral programme International Graduate School in Nanobiotechnology (IGS-NanoBio)

Notable alumni[edit]

Notable scientists[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ BOKU, "General Information". Accessed: May 24, 2012.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 48°14′12″N 16°20′14″E / 48.23667°N 16.33722°E / 48.23667; 16.33722