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Global Change Research Institute, CAS

Department of Ecosystem functional analysis of the Landscape


Knowledge of the effects of the interaction of humans and climate change on ecosystem functioning in the landscape is essential to propose effective measures to support it and ensure the irreplaceable benefits they provide.

Research objectives and focus

Our aim is to contribute to identifying the impact of global change (GC) on the role of underground and above-ground biodiversity in the ecosystem functioning, in particular carbon sequestration, linking different levels and methodological approaches. Apart from the original results, scientifically based proposals for mitigation and adaptation measures to mitigate these impacts are provided, too.

Our activities are focused on the study of (i) underground ecosystem processes in forest ecosystems at individual, community and ecosystem levels, (ii) forest ecosystem response to environmental change at ecosystem and landscape levels, and (iii) the impact of global change on the role of biodiversity for the performance of selected ecosystem functions, as a basis for assessing ecosystem services.

From a methodological point of view, when studying the basic segments of GC impacts (atmosphere and climate, ecosystems, socio-economic systems), we focus primarily on studying the interactions of all three segments. The scope of our three working groups, in cooperation with other CzechGlobe teams and a number of external experts, ranges from the level of individual, community, ecosystem, to the landscape. For the functional interconnection of these levels we use the processes „upscaling“ and „downscaling“. The main methodological approach is to develop models and other tools to study carbon balance and other ecosystem functions and services in relation to indirect and direct drivers (especially climate change and land use).

 Key words: carbon sequestration, underground and above ground biodiversity, climate change impact on forest ecosystems, ecosystem functions/services, integrated modelling, space-time levels

Main research directions of the department

Study of underground ecosystem processes in forest ecosystems

  • Study of the effects of natural disturbances (g. windstorm or bark beetle calamities) on communities of rhizospheric, especially ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi and their relationship to host tree species using molecular biological methods

  • Study of the environmental impacts on genetic structure of selected ECM population
  • Study of the spreading of ECM fungal spores by animals, above all red dears and their coprophagous beetles

Study of the response of forest ecosystems to environmental change

  • Retrospective analysis and forecasting the response of forest ecosystems to environmental change (predominantly drought and atmospheric deposition with focus on ozone)
  • To estimate the impacts of the possible decay of forest stands with predominant spruce on the carbon balance of forest and forest-agricultural landscapes
  • Investigation the possibilities of using the EFISCEN growth model (including the YASSO soil model) for the two objectives mentioned above

Study of the impact of global change on the role of biodiversity in selected ecosystem function performance as a background for ecosystem service assessment

  • Development of the integrated model IMALBES (Integrative Modelling and Assessment of Ecosystem Services in the Landscape) in the cooperation with the Department of Geoinformatics, Palacký University in Olomouc
  • Research of the changing relationship of diversity (taxonomic, functional and diversity of species response to environmental change) and selected ecosystem functions (production, evapotranspiration and water and substance retention) in the landscape
  • Determination of ecosystem function of water and substance retention by means of water runoff, erosion and deposition models
  • Development of the method for assessing the hydromorphological and ecological status of a riparian zone using the Riparian Habitat Quality Index (RHQI)
  • Study of natural pollinators of fruit orchards and agricultural crops under the influence of climate change
  • Assessment of the sustainability of natural resources in agriculture and forestry in terms of energy, carbon and economic balance, including environmental impact assessment, using the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) method
  • Study of the opportunities for sustainable agriculture in mountainous landscape of Nepal


Selected publications in last period

Cudlín O., Pechanec V., Purkyt J., Chobot K., Salvati L., Cudlín P. (2020): Are valuable and representative natural habitats sufficiently protected? Application of Marxan model in the Czech Republic. Sustainability 12 (402): 1-15.
Jakubínský, J., Pechanec, V., Procházka, J., Cudlín, P. (2019): Modelling of soil erosion and accumulation in an agricultural landscape-A comparison of selected approaches applied at the small stream basin level in the Czech Republic. Water 11(3), 404. ISSN 2073-4441.
Norton M., Baldi A., Buda V., Carli B., Cudlín P., Jones M. B., Korhola A., Michalski R., Novo F. R., Oszlányi J., Santos F., Schink B., Shepherd J., Vet L., Walloe L., Wijkman, A. (2019): Serious mismatches continue between science and policy in forest bioenergy. Global Change Biology Bioenergy 11: 1256-1263.
Prokopová M., Salvati L., Cudlín O., Včeláková R., Plch R., Cudlín P. (2019): Envisioning present and future land use change under varying ecological regimes and their influence on landscape stability. Sustainability 11 (17): Article number 4654.
Veselá, P., Vašutová, M., Edwards-Jonášová, M., Cudlín, P. (2019): Soil fungal community in Norway spruce forests under bark beetle attack. Forests. 2019, 10(2), 109. ISSN 1999-4907.
Juráň, S., Edwards, M., Cudlín, P., Zapletal, M., Šigut, L., Grace, J., Urban, O. (2018): Prediction of ozone effects on net ecosystem production of Norway spruce forest. iForest – Biogeosciences and Forestry, 11: 743-750. ISSN 1971-7458.
Khadka, C., Aryal, K. P., Edwards-Jonášová, M., Upadhyaya, A., Dhungana, N., Cudlín, P., Vacik, H. (2018): Evaluating participatory techniques for adaptation to climate change: Nepal case study. Forest Policy and Economics 97: 73-82. ISSN 1389-9341.
Pechanec, V., Machar, I., Pohanka, T., Oprsal, Z., Petrovič, F., Švajda, J., Šálek, L., Chobot, K., Filippovova, J., Cudlín, P., Málková, J. (2018): Effectiveness of Natura 2000 system for habitat types protection: A case study from the Czech Republic. Nature Conservation 24: 21-41. ISSN 1314-6947
Pechanec, V., Mráz, A., Benc, A., Cudlín, P. (2018): Analysis of spatiotemporal variability of C-factor derived from remote sensing data. Journal of Applied Remote Sensing 12(1), 016022. ISSN 1931-3195.
Pechanec, V., Purkyt, J., Benc, A., Nwaogu, C., Štěrbová, L., Cudlín, P. (2018): Modelling of the carbon sequestration and its prediction under climate change. Ecological Informatics 47: 50-54. ISSN 1574-9541.
Vašutová, M., Edwards-Jonášová, M., Veselá, P., Effenberkova, L., Fleischer, P., Cudlín, P. (2018): Management regime is the most important factor influencing ectomycorrhizal species community in Norway spruce forests after windthrow. Mycorrhiza 28(3), 221-233. ISSN 0940-6360.
Cudlín P., Klopčič M., Tognetti R., Máliš F., Alados C.L., Bebi P., Grunewald K., Zhiyanski M., Andonowski V., La Porta N., Bratanova-Doncheva S., Kachaunova E., Edwards-Jonášová M., Ninot J.M., Rigling A., Hofgaard A., Hlásny T., Skalák P., Wielgolaski F.E. (2017): Drivers of treeline shift in different European mountains. Climate Research 73: 135-150.
Fleischer, P., Pichler, V., Holko, L., Fleischer Jr., P., Máliš, F., Gömöryová, E., Cudlín, P., Holeksa, J., Michalová, Z., Homolová, Z., Škvarenina, J., Střelcová, K., Hlaváč, P. (2017): Forest ecosystem services affected by natural disturbances, climate and land-use changes in the Tatra Mountains. Climate Research 73(1-2): 57-71. ISSN 0936-577X.
Samec, P., Caha, J., Zapletal, M., Tuček, P., Cudlín, P., Kučera, M. (2017): Discrimination between acute and chronic decline of Central European forests using map algebra of the growth condition and forest biomass fuzzy sets: A case study. Science of the Total Environment 599-600: 899-909. ISSN 0048-9697.