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Dr. Florian Zellweger



scientific staff member


Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL
Zürcherstrasse 111
8903 Birmensdorf


Birmensdorf Bi HP D 58



My research is centred on using high-resolution remote sensing data and large field databases to understand how forests and biodiversity are responding to global change drivers such as climate and land management change. Key research topics include (1) understanding how microclimates are shaping the response of biodiversity to global change, (2) how international reporting and monitoring of forest diversity is affected by area and environmental heterogeneity, and (3) using georeferenced species occurrence data to model biodiversity dynamics in space and over time. To increase the impact of this research I am collaborating with industry partners, with the aim to develop evidence-based and innovative solutions for biodiversity and natural capital monitoring. I work towards strengthening the link between ecology and the digitalisation of natural resources to manage ecosystems sustainably and safeguard the provisioning of ecosystem services to future generations.


Education & Employment

11/2019 – presentScientific staff member, WSL, Forest Resources and Management, Birmensdorf
02/2019 – presentAssociate, Natural Capital Research Ltd., Oxford, UK
2017 – 2019SNF Postdoc Mobility Fellow, University of Cambridge, Department of Plant Sciences, Cambridge, UK, advisor: Prof. David Coomes
2016 - 2017Ph.D., Ecology (Biodiversity and Remote Sensing), ETH Zurich
2012 – 2013Scientific assistant, WSL, Biodiversity and Conservation Biology, Birmensdorf
2006 – 2012B.S. and M.S., Geography (GIScience, Biogeography, Forest and Landscape Management), University of Zurich
2002 – 2006Claims Manager, SwissRe, Division Property and Casualty, Zurich
1999 – 2010Several projects in mountain forest management and in the Swiss National Park (civil service)