Torben Windirsch-Woiwode

Dr. Torben Windirsch


torben [dot] windirsch [at] rifs-potsdam [dot] de

In 2013 I started to study Geoecology at the University of Potsdam. My Bachelor thesis dealt with permafrost genesis in northwestern Greenland. I continued my studies in a Master program, already focussing on Arctic and global development as well as the role of human involvement in these processes. During this time I worked at the permafrost research laboratories at the Alfred Wegener Institute in Potsdam, where I also wrote my Master thesis on Siberian permafrost genesis and carbon inventories in 2018. In the following I started my PhD in 2019, investigating the topic "Permafrost Carbon Stabilization by Recreatng a Herbivore-Driven Ecosystem", looking into animal impacts on permafrost and especially permafrost carbon storage as well as potential strategies to preserve permafrost during global climate change. For this, I led three field campaigns (2019 to Chersky-Siberia; 2020 and 2022 to norhernmost Finland) and joined the Arctic Gouvernance Group at IASS in 2020. After finishing my PhD successfully in January 2024 I joined RIFS to develop land use strategies for soil carbon preservation in the Arctic together with local partners.

2024: successfully finished and defended my PhD project on hebivory effects on Arctic soil carbon storage

  • 2022: field campaign to northernmost Finland to sample reindeer winter ranges
  • 2020: field camaign to northernmost Finland to collect soil samples from different grazin intensities
  • 2019: field campaign to Chersky, Siberia, to collect permafrost samples from different grazing intensities
  • 2019: start of PhD in Arctic Biogeochemistry at the University of Potsdam and at the Alfred Wegener Institute, topic "Permafrost Carbon Stabilisaton by Recreating a Herbivore-Driven Ecosystem"
  • 2016-2018: Master program in Geoecology at the University of Potsdam; Master thesis "Organic Matter Characteristics in a Changing Permafrost Environment: Yukechi Alas Landscape, Central Yakutia" *2013-2016: Bachelor program in Geoecology at the University of Potsdam; Bachelor thesis "Organic Matter Composition of Polygon-Patterned Tundra in the Thule Area (NW Greenland)"
  • Arctic land use, focus on sustainable land use strategies for climate change effect mitigation
  • permafrost carbon storage
  • bio-geo-interactions in terrestrial Arctic environments
  • traditional animal husbandry in Arctic regions
  • measures and strategies for permafrost conservation