The research group Sustainable Bioeconomy investigates the opportunities and challenges of new technologies and innovations for providing, converting, using, and recycling biogenic resources. The complex interrelations and trade-offs in bioeconomy are analyzed from a techno-economic, ecological, and societal point of view. Its research focuses on the substitution of fossil and critical resources, the increase in efficiency of land use and resources, the capacity for adaptation and transformation of agriculture and forestry, and the closing of material cycles. Current topics are digital and integrated production systems, the use of microalgae, and the production of sustainable biofuels using thermochemical conversion of agricultural and forestry residues.
The research group uses an interdisciplinary approach and works in close cooperation with technology developers and users. Methods of life cycle assessment (LCA, LCC, and S-LCA) and approaches of multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) are applied for technology assessments. Transdisciplinary formats (e.g., living labs) are used to capture different social areas of knowledge, views, and perspectives and to co-design technologies and implementation concepts. The research aims to develop practice- and action-oriented knowledge on socially feasible and sustainable bioeconomic transformation paths for decision makers and stakeholders in politics, the economy, and society.