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You are here: FRIAS Fellows Fellows 2019/20 Prof. Dr. Kerstin Stahl

Prof. Dr. Kerstin Stahl

Source: private
University of Freiburg
Internal Senior Fellow
October 2019 - July 2020

Room 01 026
Phone +49 (0) 761-203 97345
Fax +49 (0) 761-203 97451


Kerstin Stahl has a DFG Heisenberg professorship of Environmental Hydrological Systems at the University of Freiburg in Germany. Before she returned to the university where she received her doctorate in 2001, she worked as a postdoc and research scientist at Oregon State University, the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and the University of Oslo in Norway. Kerstin teaches in the undergraduate and graduate programmes of the Faculty of Environment and Natural Resources and advises several graduate students and postdocs. Her research focuses on changes in hydrological systems, with an emphasis low flow and mountain hydrology and on drought hazard and risk assessment. Besides analysing trends and modelling changes in streamflow at regional scales, in the last years Kerstin and her group pioneered an approach of linking drought indicators to drought impacts sourced from text reports as a basis to inform drought early warning more effectively. Kerstin has a track-record on international and transdisciplinary research project leads on the topic of drought, including a Belmont Forum project and the current regional research alliance DRIeR. She also coordinates a collaborative project on the future of the River Rhine, one of the most important transboundary rivers in Europe. Kerstin has been an Editor of HESS for several years and currently serves as co-chair for the catchment hydrology programme of EGU.


Selected Publications

  • Bachmair, S., Tanguy, M., Hannaford, J., and Stahl, K. (2018). How well do meteorological indicators represent agricultural and forest drought across Europe? Environmental Research Letters, 13(3), 034042, doi:10.1088/1748-9326/aaafda
  • Stahl, K., Kohn, I., Blauhut, V. , Urquijo, J., De Stefano, L., Acácio, V., Dias, S., Stagge, J. H., Tallaksen, L. M., Kampragou, E., Van Loon, A. F., Barker, L. J., Melsen, L. A., Bifulco, C., Musolino, D., de Carli, A. , Massarutto, A., Assimacopoulos, D., Van Lanen, H. A. J.: Impacts of European drought events: insights from an international database of text-based reports Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 16, 801-819, doi:10.5194/nhess-16-801-2016
  • Stagge, J.H., Kohn, I., Tallaksen, L.M., Stahl, K. (2015) Modeling drought impact occurrence based on meteorological drought indices in Europe, Journal of Hydrology, 530: 37–50. doi:10.1016/j.jhydrol.2015.09.039.
  • Stahl, K., Tallaksen, L. M., Hannaford, J., and van Lanen, H. A. J.: Filling the white space on maps of European runoff trends: estimates from a multi-model ensemble, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 16, 2035-2047, doi:10.5194/hess-16-2035-2012, 2012.
  • Stahl, K., R. D. Moore, J. M. Shea, D. Hutchinson, and A. J. Cannon (2008), Coupled modelling of glacier and streamflow response to future climate scenarios, Water Resour. Res., 44, W02422, doi:10.1029/2007WR005956.


FRIAS Research Project

FRIAS Research Focus Environmental Forecasting

Environmental models are the main tool through which our understanding of natural processes is transferred into practice in a human-dominated world: weather forecasts, flood warnings, carbon balances of forests, landslides, recycling budgets are computed using environmental models along with a range of complexity. Such environmental models comprise representations of the natural processes as well as human impacts and include economic models, such as those simulating trade and environmental impacts at local to global scales.

Environmental disciplines have evolved strikingly divergent modelling cultures, of different scientific credibility. The aim of the proposed Research Focus at the FRIAS is to understand modelling cultures as reflecting distinct goals, distill a best practice from disciplinary experiences that makes environmental forecasts credible across environmental disciplines, and to formulate a research agenda for those areas where we can identify deficits without an existing solution. In addition to publications documenting the results of these activities, we want to write an application for a DFG Research Training Group to train a cohort of PhD researchers in a critical and cutting-edge approach to model development and application in the environmental sciences.