4th Summer School: IT-Fundamentals of National Park Monitoring August/September 2022, NLP Hunsrück-Hochwald, Germany

Foto: Landesforsten RLP -Gerhard Hänsel

Do you study a subject in the fields of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Computer Science or Engineering? Are you also interested in working in a national park or biosphere reserve?

If that’s the case, the summer school "IT Fundamentals of National Park Monitoring” is just the right thing for you !

During the one week summer school you will learn the basics of monitoring and management of national parks and biosphere reserves and you will also get an insight in the use of information and communication technologies for the monitoring of national parks. 

This all takes place based on the example of the youngest national park in Germany – the National Park Hunsrück-Hochwald – together with scientists and practitioners working in this field.

Programme and schedule will be communicated soon.

Contact: Prof. Dr. Peter Fischer-Stabel (p.fischer-stabel@umwelt-campus.de)


The course programme is basically divided into three areas:

  1. Theoretical foundations of selected topics of technology use in the national park management. This is mediated through university lectures as well as through two guest lectures from cooperating research institutes about the following issues: quality of environmental data, programming environmental applications, earth observation and data mining.
  2. Practical exercises to deepen the theoretical part of the lecture
  3. Events for the providing of information for the study location Germany as well as for the culture and the regional studies (see accompanying programme)

National Park Management:

Lecturers: Dr. Harald Egidi and Claus-Andreas Lessander, National Park Office  Hunsrück-Hochwald

In this block, the objectives of a national park as well as national and international standards will be introduced at the beginning. In addition to the description of the process of the national park´s establishment and the importance of participation as well as network building, the necessary inventories can be discussed briefly (geo-ecological terrain factors, vegetation, fauna, socio-economic parameters, etc.). The importance of a national park management with regard to the development of the area starting from the current state towards the desired wilderness is presented through short-, medium- and long-term management measures of the National Park Hunsrück-Hochwald. Moreover, the mediation of different levels of monitoring processes and their connection to the national park management will be discussed. 

In a subsequent excursion to the neighbouring national park Hunsrück-Hochwald, the natural environment basics, the forest composition, special locations, monitoring systems etc. will be presented to the participants.


Lecturers: Prof. Dr. Peter Fischer-Stabel, University of Applied Sciences Trier



Geographical Information Systems (GIS), satellite navigation or location-based services are just a few keywords, that point the increasing importance of spatial data and services in the management of protected areas. Therefore, the module "Geoinformation" handles the basics of management of spatial data and international standards to build an infrastructure for geospatial data. In addition to an introduction of geospatial data collection and modeling, different download- and display-services for raster and vector data will be presented as well as the creation of thematic maps.

In the accompanying practical exercises the participants will deepen their theoretical knowledge through the implementation of a spatial analysis. A special focus within the practical exercises will be on the analysis of airborne laser scan data (ALS). During this practical part, the students use data from the spatial data infrastructure of the National Park Hunsrück-Hochwald like terrain models, zoning, forest species distribution, road network, etc.


Programming Environmental Monitoring Applications with Arduino and the Internet of Things (IoT):

Lecturers: Prof. Dr. Anna Förster, Director of the Sustainable Communication Networks group at the University of Bremen; Prof. Dr. Klaus-Uwe Gollmer, University of Applied Sciences Trier, Environmental Campus Birkenfeld.


Many functions of environmental monitoring, like temperature, humidity, light and rain, can be most efficiently implemented as automated applications, where a device is deployed in the wild, gathers the relevant information and sends it autonomously to a nearby server. This teaching module will introduce programming of simple environmental monitoring applications with Arduino. Arduino is a very user-friendly and cost-efficient hardware platform with simple programming environment, which allows complete programming novices to quickly implement a simple program like temperature or light monitoring. We will learn how to program simple applications, how to connect different sensors and how to deploy the device later in the real-world. Also typical problems in the wild will be discussed, lie protection of the devices from humidity or from animals and tourists. The main goal of this module is to enable the participants to use Arduino in their learning or research projects to more efficiently gather high-quality data.










Guest Lectures:


Wildlife Detection: Dr. Ulf Hohmann, Dr. Cornelia Ebert, Dipl. Biol. Carolin Tröger - (Research Institute for Forest Ecology and Forestry (FAWF))

Forest-dependent hoofed animals can significantly influence their habitat as herbivores. A deeper understanding of this habitat management potential is extremely important for the ecological and economic aspects. One of the key problem areas of wildlife ecology is the necessary determination of distribution and density from hoofed animals, because of their hidden and often nocturnal behaviour.



An Introduction to Big Data and Scientific Data Management: Prof. dr. Jan Van den Bussche, University Hasselt


We explain how Big Data has emerged from new developments in databases, large websites, social networks, and the management of scientific data.  For example, large data streams, as generated by sensors, are creating new challenges.  But also the wide diversity of data types in Big Data is driving new database technologies.  Starting from examples such as environmental monitoring, or scientific annotation and collaboration, we introduce the main different types of data.  We distinguish between structured data, unstructured data, semistructured data, graph data, linked data, spatial data, and temporal data.  We show how Big Data can lead to new scientific understanding through Artificial Intelligence.


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The planned schedule looks like this:

For a better understanding, the categories are highlighted in colour.
Our Team

Faculty Members

For any questions redgarding our summerschool, please feel free to contact the study coordinator at  summerschool(at)umwelt-campus.de 

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Jan Clerinx

Jan Clerinx is a member of the Research Institute: Centre for Environmental Sciences. He is an engineer, who worked in the private industry mainly mobile and automatisation companies and is specialised in: data acquisition, automation, fluid dynamics, control systems and project engineering. 


Fabio Del Frate

Fabio Del Frate received the Laurea degree in electronic engineering and the Ph.D. degree in computer science from the University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy, in 1992 and 1997, respectively. From September 1995 to June 1996, he was a Visiting Scientist at the Research Laboratory of Electronics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, USA. From 1998 to 1999, he was with the European Space Agency (ESA), ESA Centre for Earth Observation, Frascati, Italy, as a Research Fellow. He is currently an Associate Professor with the University of Rome Tor Vergata, where he teaches courses on applied electromagnetics and remote sensing. He has acted and is a Principal Investigator in several remote sensing projects supported by ESA, and, in 2015, he has been appointed as an EUMETSAT Associate Scientist. He has authored or coauthored more than 100 scientific publications, with a special focus on the use of machine learning algorithms for remote sensing inversion problems. Dr. Del Frate serves as a Reviewer for different remote sensing journals and an Associate Editor for the IEEE GEOSCIENCE AND REMOTE SENSING LETTERS.


Natalie Beenaerts

Since 2011, Dr. Natalie Beenaerts is Project manager Field Research Centre (FRC), including the Ecotron Hasselt University Research Infrastructure of the Centre for Environmental Sciences (CMK) at Hasselt University. She aims to provide the FRC with research tools, so that it becomes an excellent platform for researchers and students. If possible in collaboration with existing European programs or networks, such as Lifewatch and LTER.

She oversees and schedules the ongoing experiments and feasibility of new experiments, continuously consults with the different researchers, and anticipates the possible synergies of experiments, and controls the time schedules for the existing and extra technical expert (sensor and camera installations, data control, data management).


Stephan Didas

Dr. Stephan Didas studied mathematics and computer science with focus on signal and image processing at Saarland University in Saarbrücken. He did his doctorate in natural sciences (Dr. rer. nat.) about the simplification of digital image data with partial differential equations, wavelets and adaptive averaging in Saarbrücken 2008. From 2008 to 2012, Mr. Didas was a research assistant at the Fraunhofer Institute for industrial mathematics in Kaiserslautern, department image processing. The main focuses of his work were projects in automated or computer-aided quality control and also analysis of digital signals, image and video data. Since the summer semester 2012 Mr. Didas works as an academic officer of mathematics at the University of Applied Sciences Trier, Environmental Campus Birkenfeld.


Cornelia Ebert

Dr. rer. nat. Dipl. Biol Cornelia Ebert studied biology at the Technical University of Kaiserslautern (1999 - 2005) and completed her doctorate in 2011 at the University of Freiburg (field of work: wildlife ecology and wildlife management at the Institute of Forest Zoology) relating to non-invasive genetical population estimates in feral pigs and red deer. Between 2005 and 2010, Dr. Ebert was a research assistant in a research group called Wildlife Ecology of the Research Institute for Forest Ecology and Forestry (FAWF). After that she worked as a scientist in wildlife genetics at Seq-IT GmbH & Co. KG in Kaiserslautern. In 2015 Mrs. Ebert started to work in the research group Wildlife Ecology of the FAWF again, but this time as a scientist.


Harald Egidi 

Dr. Harald Egidi graduated in forest sciences in Munich and Zurich in 1984 with his thesis "The coppicing in Siegerland - using the example of three special cooperatives compared to the last 100 years". Following his legal clerkship in Hachenburg, Kelberg and Koblenz, he earned his doctorate at the department of Forest Yield Science at the Technical University of Munich in the area of age updating in a forest construction plan with a computerised system. From 1987 to 2000, Mr. Egidi was deputy head of the unit for forest inventory / forest planning at the former district government Koblenz for the administrative regions of Koblenz and Trier. From 2000 until 2003 he was the manager of the Forestry Bureau Kempfeld. Thereafter he managed the unit "forest sustainability and environmental care" in the Ministry of Environment, Agriculture, Food, Viticulture and Forests of Rhineland-Palatinate until 2014. Since 2015 he is director of the National Park Hunsrück-Hochwald.

Dr. Egidi is a member of various advisory boards with projects of forests, wildlife and climate change impacts. In the years 2003 till 2014 he was a member of the audit committee for the higher forestry service. From 2012 until 2015 he was the head of the federal-state working group in forest management plan.


Peter Fischer-Stabel

Prof. Fischer-Stabel holds a professorship for Geomatics Technology at our university. He studied Geography, Computer Science and Hydrology. After working in the German Environmental Specimen Banking Program (Federal Environmental Protection Agency), he joined the European Space Agency in Rome, addressing issues of geo-spatial data integration. He chairs the Institute for Software Systems (ISS). Ongoing research activities focus on environmental management & information systems and ecological effects of the implementation of renewable energies. He is also a Ranger in the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve Bliesgau.


Anna Förster 

Anna Förster obtained her MSc degree in computer science and aerospace engineering from the Free University of Berlin, Germany, in 2004 and her PhD degree in self-organising sensor networks from the University of Lugano, Switzerland, in 2009. From 2010 to 2014, she was a researcher and lecturer at SUPSI (the University of Applied Sciences of Southern Switzerland). Since 2015, she leads the Sustainable Communication Networks group at the University of Bremen. Her main research interests focus on applications of wireless computer networks to sustainability applications.


Klaus-Uwe Gollmer

Prof. Dr.- Ing. Klaus-Uwe Gollmer studied  Biomedical Engineering at University of Applied Sciences Hamburg and Computer Engineering at Technical University of Hamburg-Harburg. After his doctorate he worked in the field of modelling and automation of bioprocesses. Since 1999 he is Professor for modeling and simulation at the Environmental Campus Birkenfeld of the Trier University of Applied Sciences. His actual research areas are embedded systems, internet of things (IoT) and realtime control.


Ulf Hohmann

Dr. Dipl. Biol. Ulf Hohmann studied biology in Tübingen and Kiel from 1985 until 1992. His doctoral thesis was on “ecology of raccoons in southern Lower Saxony” at the Forestry Faculty of the University of Göttingen in 1998. Since 2002 he is the head of the research group wildlife ecology at the FAWF with his main research areas in ecology of hoofed game, development and testing of methods for inventory ascertainment, wildlife effects on forest vegetation and practical advice related to the topics.


Rolf Krieger

From 1985 until 1989 Prof. Dr. Rolf Krieger studied computer science and electrical engineering at the University of Saarland.  In 1994 he completed his doctorate in computer science at the University in Frankfurt am Main. Afterwards, he worked as an IT consultant for several years. Since 1999 he is Professor for Business Information Systems at the Environmental Campus Birkenfeld of the Trier University of Applied Sciences. He is the managing director of the Institute for Software Systems in business, environment and administration. His research focuses on business information systems, environmental information systems, e-business and data quality management.


Claus-Andreas Lessander

Dipl. Forstw. Lessander (graduate forest manager) studied forest sciences on a scholarship granted by the Cusanuswerk at the University of Göttingen and at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich. After successful graduation at the Institute of Forest Management and Yield Science in Göttingen in 1990, he was a trainee at the Forest Agency Trier (forestry office in Bernkastel-Kues and in Nassau) until he took over the deputy head of the forestry office at Entenpfuhl (Soonwald) in 1994. In the years 2014 and 2015, Mr. Lessander was the manager of the starter team national park at the regional office in Birkenfeld/Nahe and he also did the preparations of the foundation of the national park authority in Hunsrück-Hochwald. Since 2015 he is deputy director of the national park office and also head of the department of research, habitat- and wildlife management. 

Mr. Lessander is expert and trainer in the forest management of Rhineland-Palatinate and alongside this ongoing work, he has worked on a variety of research and development projects to develop the systems in forest management.


Dr. Ernst Segatz


Dr. Ernst Segatz gained his diploma in forest science at the University of Freiburg in 1974. In 1984 he completed his doctorate and started working as a forest management planner and forest site cartographer in the town of Cochem.  He was the leader of the forest office of Waldmohr from 1986 to 2003 and started working as forest site specialist at the forest management planning institution Koblenz in 2004. From 2006 until 2014 he was a scientific assistant at the  Rhineland-Palatinate Research Institute for Forest Ecology and Forestry in Trippstadt in the research domain “Ecological forest development” and leader of the research group “Ecology of forest landscapes”.  Since 2014 he works as an assistance concerning developing concepts for inventory and monitoring in the national park office “Hunsrück-Hochwald”.


Carolin Tröger

Dipl. Biol. Carolin Tröger studied biology at the University in Jena between 2007 and 2012. She completed her studies successfully with her thesis about "Wind park influence on habitat use of semi-domestic reindeer (rangifer tarandus tarandus)". Since 2015 Mrs. Tröger is a research assistant in the division wildlife-ecology at the Research Institute for Forest Ecology and Forestry of Rhineland-Palatinate and there she accompanied the project "Interaction deer - lynx" in the Federal Foundation for the Environment.


Jan van der Bussche

Jan Van den Bussche is a professor of Databases and Theoretical Computer Science at Hasselt University.  He has done research on database models and query languages for a variety of application domains, including semistructured data, temporal data, spatial data, text data, graph data, and DNA data.  He has also expertise in the principles of managing the provenance of data.  He is currently serving as chair of the executive committee that oversees the international ACM Symposium series on Principles of Database Systems.  As an amateur he has a keen interest in biology, ecology, and nature conservation.


































Accompanying Programme

Accompanying Programme and Excursions

The aim of the accompanying programme is to understand professional contents and to learn more about the study location Germany as well as the German culture.

Visits are planned to the beautiful landscape of the river Mosel valley, but also a guided city tour of Trier, Germany’s oldest city, is foreseen.

The city tour shows the specific characteristics of the more than two thousand year-old history of Trier. During a shipping on the river Mosel, there will be an introduction of regional aspects and a presentation by a representative of the European Academy Otzenhausen about the European idea as well as the role of Germany in the European Union.



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More information on the Environmental-Campus is here:  

Green-Campus-Concept (Link zu Green-Campus einfügen)


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National Park Hunsrück-Hochwald

National Park Hunsrück-Hochwald

"To Leave Nature Nature" – this principle shall be realised in the most recent national park in Germany. 

After several years of planning, the National Park Hunsrück-Hochwald was officially opened in May 2015. It is a part of the nature park Saar-Hunsrück and comprises approximately 10,000 hectare, or more explicitly, 5 % of the total area. The National Park Hunsrück-Hochwald is located in the southwest of Germany and connects the federal states of Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland. A low mountain range with an almost never-ending forest area characterize the Hunsrück and differentiate the area from the surrounding best wine-growing regions of Germany: the Moselle, the Rhine, the Nahe and the Saar. The Federal Agency for Nature Conservation already counts the Hunsrück as a "hot spot region for biodiversity". Therefore, visitors can especially experience one thing: forest and wilderness. 

Research plays, in accordance with the concept of the national park, an important role in the park. Nature conservation, forest development and ecology as well as local added value and the acceptance of the national park are examined. 

Please visit the official website for offers of the national park and further information of current research activities.



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Study Conditions

Study Conditions, Accomodation and Fees:

Participants in the program will live and study on our modern campus with over 2,800 other students of environmental business, law, sustainable science, information and media technology. All student apartments come fully equipped and provide high-speed internet access as well as being connected to our university intranet.

The university does not charge a tuition fee for the SummerSchool. Students will have to pay a 450,- Euro administration fee that also covers housing and excursion costs.

Students will enjoy the benefits of our “buddy” concept, with German students providing individual help in getting orientated and integrated in campus life.


Application Process

The next Summer School will take place from August 26th to September 2nd, 2018.

Applications should be submitted by 30th of April 2018.

Please use the electronic forms provided below. Application forms can be downloaded here: 

International Student Application Form

The following documents must be included with each application:

  • Most Recent Grade Transcript
  • Certificate of English Language Proficiency or an equivalent
  • Statement of Motivation

Please note that the application forms have to be signed personally by applicants and by the responsible university referees. They can be sent back via e-mail to summerschool@umwelt-campus.de and via regular mail to the following address:

Umwelt-Campus Birkenfeld
Study Coordinator "SummerSchool: IT-Fundamentials of National Park Monitoring"
PO Box 1380
55761 Birkenfeld / Germany


Further information about studies at the University of Applied Sciences Trier:


Information for International Students


Flyer Summer School 2018

Here you can download our flyer: Flyer

(Flyer einfügen)

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