sprout layer

Working group III: Outreach - Prorities and Needs


1) Aim

Identification of existing knowledge gaps on tree response to environmental stress which may include regional data gaps, as well as scale-, species-, topic-, and parameter-specific, and methodological issues. Results will form the scientific bases of a comprehensive research proposal draft.


2) Deliverables

  • Identify research potentials and gaps on tree response to stress and identify relevant wood parameters that are suitable indicators for stress;
  • Prepare book chapters and/or review-papers;
  • Develop guidelines for sampling strategies, data acquisition methods and statistical treatment, standards for field experiments;
  • Detect research needs within scientific society (foresters, climatologists);
  • Coordinate new integrative and/or interdisciplinary research approaches.

3) Activities

Identify research gaps in terms of data, methods, and scientific concepts to develop a new research proposal:


Task 1: Based on the input of WG1, meaningful thresholds of “stress” and “extreme events” for different environmental factors have to be defined for different tree species, life stages, site conditions and climatic zones.

Task 2: Based on the input of WG2, WG3 will suggest scientific ways to come from statistical approaches (e.g. tree-ring climate correlations) to a mechanistic understanding of multiple stress responses in trees.

Task 3: WG 3 shall develop criteria or schemes how to optimally link field studies, provenance trials and laboratory or field experiments.

Task 4: Finally, ideas should be collected on how to scale up research conducted within the STReESS community to understand the carbon budget of European forest ecosystems from individual trees’ perspective, including future tree portfolios and risks of tree mortality.


4) Expected research field of WG-members

An interdisciplinary team is needed with specialists in i) tree response to various climate-related stress factors, (wood anatomy, dendrochronology, stable isotopes, ecophysiology, forest ecology); ii) adaptability of provenances and genetic factors to environmental stress; iii) experimental setups for testing stress responses of trees under controlled ecological conditions.


5) The contribution we expect from the WG-members

We expect active participation in discussing how to integrate different types of dendroecological and tree physiological data and parameters to derive conceptual models of multi-parameter stress response. The development of an assessment catalogue shall be fostered to know what stress responses of single or multiple parameters really mean in terms of tree productivity, biogeography, carbon sequestration, wood quality and tree survival.



achim braeuning sw


Achim Bräuning
Working group leader







Outcome first meeting