Biogeochemistry and biodiversity of agro- and forest ecosystems

Ecosystem Functioning and Global Change

Research in the Grassland Sciences group focuses on the process- and system-oriented understanding of functional plant diversity and of ecosystem biogeochemistry, in particular biospheric-atmospheric greenhouse gas exchange, both in response to human and biophysical drivers, across spatial and temporal scales.

Based on a multidisciplinary approach, we use classical ecological methods and further develop innovative tools, such as stable isotope analyses and micrometeorological measurements, in our observational and experimental studies.

Recent Publications

  • Measurement precision and accuracy of high artificial enrichment N-15 and C-13 tracer samples
    Mannerheim, N; Werner, RA; Buchmann, N
    RAPID COMMUNICATIONS IN MASS SPECTROMETRY, 33 (13):1153-1163; 10.1002/rcm.8451 JUL 15 2019
  • Multiple plant diversity components drive consumer communities across ecosystems
    Schuldt, A; Ebeling, A; Kunz, M; Staab, M; Guimaraes-Steinicke, C; Bachmann, D; Buchmann, N; Durka, W; Fichtner, A; Fornoff, F; Hardtle, W; Hertzog, LR; Klein, AM; Roscher, C; Schaller, J; von Oheimb, G; Weigelt, A; Weisser, W; Wirth, C; Zhang, JY; Bruelheide, H; Eisenhauer, N
    NATURE COMMUNICATIONS, 10 10.1038/s41467-019-09448-8 MAR 29 2019
  • Estimating cropland carbon fluxes: A process-based model evaluation at a Swiss crop-rotation site
    Revill, A; Emmel, C; D'Odorico, P; Buchmann, N; Hortnagl, L; Eugster, W
    FIELD CROPS RESEARCH, 234 95-106; 10.1016/j.fcr.2019.02.006 MAR 15 2019
  • Vertical patterns of photosynthesis and related leaf traits in two contrasting agricultural crops
    D'Odorico, P; Emmel, C; Revill, A; Liebisch, F; Eugster, W; Buchmann, N
    FUNCTIONAL PLANT BIOLOGY, 46 (3):213-227; 10.1071/FP18061 2019
  • Memory effects of climate and vegetation affecting net ecosystem CO2 fluxes in global forests
    Besnard, S; Carvalhais, N; Arain, MA; Black, A; Brede, B; Buchmann, N; Chen, JQ; Clevers, JGPW; Dutrieux, LP; Gans, F; Herold, M; Jung, M; Kosugi, Y; Knohl, A; Law, BE; Paul-Limoges, E; Lohila, A; Merbold, L; Roupsard, O; Valentini, R; Wolf, S; Zhang, XD; Reichstein, M
    PLOS ONE, 14 (2):10.1371/journal.pone.0211510 FEB 6 2019
  • Functional composition has stronger impact than species richness on carbon gain and allocation in experimental grasslands
    Roscher, C; Karlowsky, S; Milcu, A; Gessler, A; Bachmann, D; Jesch, A; Lange, M; Mellado-Vazquez, P; Strecker, T; Landais, D; Ravel, O; Buchmann, N; Roy, J; Gleixner, G
    PLOS ONE, 14 (1):10.1371/journal.pone.0204715 JAN 31 2019
  • Source partitioning of atmospheric methane using stable carbon isotope measurements in the Reuss Valley, Switzerland
    Stieger, Jacqueline; Bamberger, Ines; Siegwolf, Rolf T. W.; Buchmann, Nina; Eugster, Werner
    ISOTOPES IN ENVIRONMENTAL AND HEALTH STUDIES, 55 (1):1-24; 10.1080/10256016.2018.1561448 JAN 2 2019
  • Species-specific differences in water uptake depth of mature temperate trees vary with water availability in the soil
    Brinkmann, N.; Eugster, W.; Buchmann, N.; Kahmen, A.
    PLANT BIOLOGY, 21 (1):71-81; 10.1111/plb.12907 JAN 2019
  • Quantifying the effect of forest age in annual net forest carbon balance
    Besnard, S; Carvalhais, N; Arain, MA; Black, A; de Bruin, S; Buchmann, N; Cescatti, A; Chen, JQ; Clevers, JGPW; Desai, AR; Gough, CM; Havrankova, K; Herold, M; Hortnagl, L; Jung, M; Knohl, A; Kruijt, B; Krupkova, L; Law, BE; Lindroth, A; Noormets, A; Roupsard, O; Steinbrecher, R; Varlagin, A; Vincke, C; Reichstein, M
    ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH LETTERS, 13 (12):10.1088/1748-9326/aaeaeb DEC 2018
  • Below-ground resource partitioning alone cannot explain the biodiversity-ecosystem function relationship: A field test using multiple tracers
    Jesch, A; Barry, KE; Ravenek, JM; Bachmann, D; Strecker, T; Weigelt, A;
    Buchmann, N; de Kroon, H; Gessler, A; Mommer, L; Roscher, C;
    Scherer-Lorenzen, M
    JOURNAL OF ECOLOGY, 106 (5):2002-2018; 10.1111/1365-2745.12947 SEP 2018
  • Effect of environmental conditions on sun-induced fluorescence in a mixed forest and a cropland
    Paul-Limoges, E; Damm, A; Hueni, A; Liebisch, F; Eugster, W; Schaepman, ME; Buchmann, N
    REMOTE SENSING OF ENVIRONMENT, 219 310-323; 10.1016/j.rse.2018.10.018 DEC 15 2018
  • Effects of plant productivity and species richness on the drought response of soil respiration in temperate grasslands
    Burri, S; Niklaus, PA; Grassow, K; Buchmann, N; Kahmen, A
    PLOS ONE 13(12) Article Number: e0209031, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0209031, DEC 21 2018
  • Multiple facets of biodiversity drive the diversity-stability relationship
    Craven, D; Eisenhauer, N; Pearse, WD; Hautier, Y; Isbell, F; Roscher, C; Bahn, M; Beierkuhnlein, C; Bonisch, G; Buchmann, N; Byun, C; Catford, JA; Cerabolini, BEL; Cornelissen, JHC; Craine, JM; De Luca, E; Ebeling, A; Griffin, JN; Hector, A; Hines, J; Jentsch, A; Kattge, J; Kreyling, J; Lanta, V; Lemoine, N; Meyer, ST; Minden, V; Onipchenko, V; Polley, HW; Reich, PB; van Ruijven, J; Schamp, B; Smith, MD; Soudzilovskaia, NA; Tilman, D; Weigelt, A; Wilsey, B; Manning, P
    NATURE ECOLOGY & EVOLUTION, 2 (10):1579-1587; 10.1038/s41559-018-0647-7 OCT 2018
  • The effect of saline-alkaline and water stresses on water use efficiency and standing biomass of Phragmites australis and Bolboschoenus planiculmis
    Liu, Y; Ding, Z; Bachofen, C; Lou, YJ; Jiang, M; Tang, XG; Lu, XG; Buchmann, N
    SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT, 644 207-216; 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.05.321 DEC 10 2018
  • Functional groups differ in trait means, but not in trait plasticity to species richness in local grassland communities
    Roscher, C; Schumacher, J; Lipowsky, A; Gubsch, M; Weigelt, A; Schmid, B; Buchmann, N; Schulze, ED
    ECOLOGY, 99 (10):2295-2307; 10.1002/ecy.2447 OCT 2018
  • Climate and soils together regulate photosynthetic carbon isotope discrimination within C-3 plants worldwide
    Cornwell, WK; Wright, IJ; Turner, J; Maire, V; Barbour, MM; Cernusak, LA; Dawson, T; Ellsworth, D; Farquhar, GD; Griffiths, H; Keitel, C; Knohl, A; Reich, PB; Williams, DG; Bhaskar, R; Cornelissen, JHC; Richards, A; Schmidt, S; Valladares, F; Korner, C; Schulze, ED; Buchmann, N; Santiago, LS
    GLOBAL ECOLOGY AND BIOGEOGRAPHY, 27 (9):1056-1067; SEP 2018
  • Management matters: testing a mitigation strategy for nitrous oxide emissions using legumes on intensively managed grassland
    Fuchs, K; Hortnagl, L; Buchmann, N; Eugster, W; Snow, V; Merbold, L
    BIOGEOSCIENCES, 15 (18):5519-5543; 10.5194/bg-15-5519-2018 SEP 18 2018
  • Integrated management of a Swiss cropland is not sufficient to preserve its soil carbon pool in the long term
    Emmel, C; Winkler, A; Hortnagl, L; Revill, A; Ammann, C; D'Odorico, P; Buchmann, N; Eugster, W
    BIOGEOSCIENCES, 15 (17):5377-5393; 10.5194/bg-15-5377-2018 SEP 6 2018
  • Employing stable isotopes to determine the residence times of soil water and the temporal origin of water taken up by Fagus sylvatica and Picea abies in a temperate forest
    Brinkmann, N; Seeger, S; Weiler, M; Buchmann, N; Eugster, W; Kahmen, A
    NEW PHYTOLOGIST, 219 (4):1300-1313; 10.1111/nph.15255 SEP 2018
  • Interspecific trait differences rather than intraspecific trait variation increase the extent and filling of community trait space with increasing plant diversity in experimental grasslands
    Roscher, C; Schumacher, J; Gubsch, M; Lipowsky, A; Weigelt, A; Buchmann, N; Schulze, ED; Schmid, B
    PERSPECTIVES IN PLANT ECOLOGY EVOLUTION AND SYSTEMATICS, 33 42-50; 10.1016/j.ppees.2018.05.001 AUG 2018
  • Tackling Food System Challenges through Experiential Education Criteria for Optimal Course Design
    Grant, M; Shreck, A; Buchmann, N
    GAIA-ECOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES FOR SCIENCE AND SOCIETY, 27 (1):169-175; 10.14512/gaia.27.1.13 2018
  • How do leaf trait values change spatially and temporally with light availability in a grassland diversity experiment?
    Bachmann, Dorte; Roscher, Christiane; Buchmann, Nina
    OIKOS, 127 (7):935-948; 10.1111/oik.04533 JUL 2018
  • Trait means, trait plasticity and trait differences to other species jointly explain species performances in grasslands of varying diversity
    Roscher, C; Gubsch, M; Lipowsky, A; Schumacher, J; Weigelt, A; Buchmann, N; Schulze, ED; Schmid, B
    OIKOS, 127 (6):855-865; 10.1111/oik.04815 JUN 2018
  • Crops, Nitrogen, Water: Are Legumes Friend, Foe, or Misunderstood Ally?
    Adams, MA; Buchmann, N; Sprent, J; Buckley, TN; Turnbull, TL
    TRENDS IN PLANT SCIENCE, 23 (6):539-550; JUN 2018
  • Origin context of trait data matters for predictions of community performance in a grassland biodiversity experiment
    Roscher, C; Schumacher, J; Gubsch, M; Lipowsky, A; Weigelt, A; Buchmann, N; Schmid, B; Schulze, ED
    ECOLOGY, 99 (5):1214-1226; MAY 2018
  • Greenhouse gas fluxes over managed grasslands in Central Europe
    Hortnagl, L; Barthel, M; Buchmann, N; Eugster, W; Butterbach-Bahl, K; Diaz-Pines, E; Zeeman, M; Klumpp, K; Kiese, R; Bahn, M; Hammerle, A; Lu, HY; Ladreiter-Knauss, T; Burri, S; Merbold, L
    GLOBAL CHANGE BIOLOGY, 24 (5):1843-1872; MAY 2018
  • Impacts of droughts and extreme-temperature events on gross primary production and ecosystem respiration: a systematic assessment across ecosystems and climate zones
    Authors: von Buttlar, J; Zscheischler, J; Rammig, A; et al.
    Source: BIOGEOSCIENCES, 15 (5):1293-1318; 10.5194/bg-15-1293-2018 MAR 5 2018 
  • Genotypic variability enhances the reproducibility of an ecological study
    Authors: Milcu, A; Puga-Freitas, R; Ellison, AM; et al.
    Source: NATURE ECOLOGY & EVOLUTION, 2 (2):279-+; 10.1038/s41559-017-0434-x FEB 2018 
  • Biodiversity-multifunctionality relationships depend on identity and number of measured functions
    Authors: Meyer, ST; Ptacnik, R; Hillebrand, H; et al.
    Source: NATURE ECOLOGY & EVOLUTION, 2 (1):44-49; 10.1038/s41559-017-0391-4 JAN 2018
  • Resilient Leaf Physiological Response of European Beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) to Summer Drought and Drought Release 
    Author(s): Pflug, Ellen E.; Buchmann, Nina; Siegwolf, Rolf T. W.; et al. 
    Source: FRONTIERS IN PLANT SCIENCE, 9: FEB 19 2018
Nina Buchmann ETH Zurich

Prof. Dr. Nina Buchmann
ETH Zurich
Institute of Agricultural Sciences
8092 Zurich

Tel: +41 (0)44 632 39 59

Research topics

  • Plant and Ecosystem Ecophysiology
  • Biogeochemistry
  • Greenhouse Gas Exchange (CO2, H2O, CH4, N2O)
  • Biodiversity & Ecosystem Functioning
  • Stable Isotope Ecology
  • Policy Advice


  • Global change biology
  • Sustainable and efficient resource use.
  • Ecosystem Ecology