Korinna T. Allhoff
Dr. Allhoff is a physicist who has fallen in love with ecology. She completed her studies at the University of Marburg (Germany), earned her PhD at the Technical University of Darmstadt (Germany) and then spent 2 years working as a postdoc in an interdisciplinary team at the Institute of Ecology and Environmental Sciences in Paris (France). In 2017, she joined the plant ecology group led by Katja Tielbörger at the Institute of Evolution and Ecology at the Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, where she teaches ecological modeling to students of ecology, geoecology, archaeology and bioinformatics.
Korinna’s research projects are diverse and rooted in various subdisciplines of ecology. All of them have the common goal to improve our understanding of how ecosystems work, how they maintain their balance and how they respond to global change. To reach this goal, she describes ecosystems as networks, where nodes represent species and links represent species interactions. A food web, for example, describes an ecosystem as a network of who-eats-whom, while a competition network captures who-suffers-from-whom. Together with her students, Korinna studies how the internal structure of such ecological networks affects their overall stability and shapes their response to disturbances, such as increasing temperatures, species invasions, habitat fragmentation or urbanisation. A recent presentation of one of her research projects can be found here.
Her background in complex systems sciences allows her to tackle her research questions from an interdisciplinary viewpoint, leveraging mathematical tools and computing power. Her models are typically rather abstract and offer a generalising perspective on a given problem. However, she actively collaborates with empiricists at all stages of her research projects to ensure that her work is nevertheless grounded in empirical observation and relevant for real world problems. Further information about her research can be found here.