According to UNO estimations, the world population is going to increase significantly from at present 7 billion to more than9 billion people by 2050. Simultaneously, the available agricultural area and grassland will decrease rapidly due to climate changes and soil degradation and fossil fuels will be exhausted in the foreseeable future. For these reasons, humankind will be confronted with great challenges and has to change its dealing with natural resources. Existing biological resources must be used by innovative processes more sustainably than before. Bioeconomy can significantly contribute to meeting these challenges. The basics of bioeconomy are the biotechnological research and the resulting innovations in the agricultural economy and the manufacturing sectors and all related services, which develop, produce and process or otherwise use the biological resources (plants, animals, microorganisms).

Plants are the central column of the bioeconomy, as they are the basis of all life. Photosynthesis provides the material basis on which our society is built on. Even today, we do not only depend on plants for our food and nourishment, but plants also provide the raw material for the pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries and are used as fuel.

The plant-based bioeconomy is one of the key industries of the 21st Century to secure the future provision of food, feed and renewable resources and to overcome the dependence on fossil fuels. The ScienceCampus Halle - plant-based bioeconomy (WCH) unites leading experts in the field of plant science, agricultural, economic and social sciences in order to meet these social challenges of our time.


Science Lounge "Digitization in agriculture" 6th of March 2019

We cordially invite you to the Science Lounge on "Digitization in agriculture" on March 6 2019, 6pm. In a relaxed café atmosphere, Oleksandr Verzhykhovskyi (responsible for innovations at the Agricultural Company IMC), Matija Zulj (Founder of Software Agrivi) and special guest Thomas Wünsch, State Secretary of the Ministry of Economy, Science and Digitization exchange views with Ivan Duric, an expert of the research institute IAMO Halle. The discussion will be moderated by Daniel Schlechter from the MDR science department.

The event takes place in cooperation with the Leibniz Science Campus Eastern Europe - Global Area (EEGA), and the Leibniz Institute for Agricultural Development in Transformation Economies (IAMO). Registration at: leibniz-eega@ifl-leipzig.de. The participant number is limited due to space, so rather registrate now. Please note, there are no seat reservations.

Date: March 6, 2019, 6:00 pm
Place: Café 7gramm in Halle / Saale

Please note: During the event photos and videos may be made for public relations purposes and documentation.

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Dr. Junker shows the phenotyping facility

Students discover the IPK

Automatical phenotyping, a huge amount of seeds for purpose of conservation in storage and the brand-new laboratory „Pflanzenkulturhalle“ – the students of the master course „renewable ressources“ were able to get a closer look in the infrastructure of the IPK (Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research) in Gatersleben. The excursion at Friday, 16th of November was organized by the ScienceCampus Halle.

After a short introduction in the work of the IPK and the ScienceCampus, two researchers lead the group to different areas of the research institute and through various departments. Dr. Jan Rücknagel accompanied the group.  

At first, Dr. Börner gave an insight in the conservation activities of the IPK: In a storage facility, the seeds are preserved at -18° Celsius and regularly tested on their germination capacity. Mathematically, every 50 years an employee tests the same sort of seed. The constant cultivation of the plants is necessary to gain new seeds – due to the need of research objects for the IPK. But also other research institutes may get access to the seeds for free. Vegetative plants like the potato which doesn’t grow seeds have to be permanently grown a temperatures just above the freezing level to maintain the population.

After that, Dr. Junker lead the group to the phenotyping facilities. Hydraulically conveyer belts moved the plants to a photo chamber, where certain parameters can be determined. Especially the new laboratory “Pflanzenkulturhalle”, which simulates field circumstances including wind and sun exposure, fascinated the group.

The excursion made an impression and hopefully left a few students motivated to further investitage the activities of the IPK and the ScienceCampus Halle.

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Dr. Pascal Pecher offers an insight in the complexity of aroma research (photography: Ina Volkhardt/SCH)

Bioökonomie to go

The ScienceCampus Halle participates at „Mind the Lab“

Hot tea served at cold underground stations in Berlin at November – that sounds like a piece of science nobody can reject.

At Thursday, the 8th of November, the ScienceCampus Halle together with the IPB (Leibniz Institute of Plant Biochemistry) presented recent research topics at “Mind the Lab”.

At the underground station „Berlin Friedrichstraße“, passengers could try to guess various plant odors, that were further explained by Dr. Pascal Pecher from a scientific perspective. Further, certain natural alternatives to sugar could be tried as tea, leaves or slices, e.g. tea from a Japanese Hydrangea. Vanilla aroma from wood or sweeteners from Hydrangea – it was shown, that plants are not just important for food and feed, but also as biomass materials in the production of odors or aromas. Scientists and public could get in touch with each other, while an insight into research on aromas was as much discussed as applicability of scientific results, critical aspects of genetic engineering or the variety of working fields of scientists. This unconventional, open-minded access to science was received a clear support and positive feedback from the public.

Numerous institutions participated at the event, which was held during the science week in Berlin. At 6 underground stations, live experiments, games and demonstrations were performed. The aim was to address passengers during the short term of changing coaches and to get them in contact with science – exciting, up-to-date and “to go”.


For further information on the unconventional event “Mind the Lab” see: http://berlin.mindthelab.org/

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Promoted by:


National Research Strategy BioEconomy 2030

Spitzencluster BioEconomy

European Commission

The International Consortium on Applied Bioeconomy Research

EuropaBio - the European Association for BioIndustries

Cooperations of the Leibniz Association with universities

FACCE JPI  - Agriculture, Food Security and Climate Change

Founding Members Associated Members
WCH-Founding Members WCH-Associated members