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The Mediterranean Hot-Spot: Challenges and Responses in a Changing Environment

Head: Prof. Dr. Jürg Luterbacher
Project Description
The Mediterranean basin is located in the transitional zone between the deserts of North Africa, the semi-arid and arid regions of the Middle East and the temperate, continental western and central Europe. The geographic characteristics, climatic and environmental conditions of the region are characterized by gradients and contrasts that also define the social and economic aspects, access to natural resources, as well as cultural and religious traditions.
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This is a place where our students share their experiences! Would you like to join them?
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Upcoming Events


29 November 2018, 08:45: Workshop

Towards an interdisciplinary approach

Department of Geography, Justus­-Liebig-­University of Giessen, Seminar room 006, Senckenbergstr. 01, (Neues Schloss), Giessen

The DAAD joint research project "The Mediterranean Hot-Spot: Challenges and Responses in a Changing Environment", between the Justus-Liebig-University of Giessen and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki welcomes you to the workshop "Towards an interdisciplinary approach". Invited high­ranking scientists from different fields and disciplines such as Human History, Agriculture, Forestry, Plant Sciences, Climatology, Geography bring their expertise in interdisciplinary research and address challenges that the Mediterranean changing environment pauses. Heatwaves and wildfires, climate change impacts on agriculture, society and economy and the recent migration patterns in the Eastern Mediterranean compose the program of the interdisciplinary workshop.



19-23 November 2018: Seminar

"Climate modelling: from code to simulation"

Department of Geography, Justus­-Liebig-­University of Giessen, Instructors: Dr. Elena Xoplaki (Department of Geography Climatology, Climate Dynamics and Climate Change, Justus­-Liebig-­University of Giessen) & Dr. Sebastian Wagner (Institute for Coastal Research, Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht)

The block course will focus on the presentation and analysis of the different model types: 1. Energy balance models 2. Earth system models of intermediate complexity 3. General circulation models 4. Comprehensive earth system models 5. Regional climate models. Participants will have a hands-on practice on real climate models, analysis and visualization.


23 July - 3 August & 9 - 10 August 2018:

Block Course

"Python for Environmental Scientists"

Research Centre for BioSystems, Land Use and Nutrition, Main Instructor: Florian Ulrich


21-23 June 2018: Block Course

"Past Climate Variability and dendroclimatology"

Department of Geography, Main Instructors: Dr. Lea Schneider and Dr. Stefanie Talento

1st Day : Natural and forced climate variability, drivers and mechanisms from millennial (orbital) to interdecadal and interannual scales

2nd Day : Field trip, tree-ring sampling for dendrochronological purposes

3rd Day : Analysis of tree-ring samples, measurements and production of tree-ring chronologies for climate reconstructions at the Tree Ring Lab at the University of Mainz

19-21 June 2018: Block Course

"Climate modeling, Evaluation and Downscaling methods"

Department of Geography, Main Instructors: Dr. Merja Toelle, Dr. Martin Ivanov and Dr. Stella Dafka

1st Day : Climate modeling - Climate system and components - Climatic forcings and feedbacks - Timescales - Climate models (global and regional) - Model equations - Parameterizations - Model forcings

2nd Day : Evaluation of models performance - Methods and statistical tools (Biases, Skill scores, Taylor diagram) utilizing state-of-the-art datasets - Practical exercises using CDO and R

3rd Day : Introduction to downscaling and overview of Dynamical, Statistical, and Hybrid Downscaling procedures - Dynamical Downscaling methods - Classification of methods for Statistical downscaling


02-07 May 2018: Block Course

"Introduction to Climate Change Methods"

Department of Geography, Main Instructor: Dr. Elena Xoplaki

Kick-off meeting
From March 7-9 the kick-off meeting of the project The Mediterranean Hot-Spot: Challenges and Responses in a Changing Environment took place at the Justus Liebig University in Giessen. This DAAD-funded cooperation between the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (AUTh) and the Justus Liebig University Giessen (JLU) consists of a consortium of different institutes of both universities.
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