The University of Debrecen (UD), established in 2000, is the legal successor to the Reformed College of Debrecen, founded in 1538. With nearly 30 000 students and 1400 instructors, 15 faculties and 21 doctoral schools, UD is among the three largest universities and top research institutions in Hungary, producing c. 15% of the total research volume in the country. The Department of Ecology teaches basic and advanced courses in ecology and conservation biology. Research interests are in quantitative and conservation ecology, focusing on (i) quantitative methods to describe diversity patterns, (ii) long-term ecological processes and spatial heterogeneity in aquatic and forest ecosystems, and (iii) restoration and management of aquatic and terrestrial habitats to increase landscape biodiversity. The Department oversees long-term research at the Síkf?kút LTER Site and in the World Heritage Hortobágy National Park, contributes analytical and synthetic knowledge in biodiversity research at other UD departments and coordinates such research in several national parks. UD has participated in four FP6 or FP7 projects (MACMAN, EUMON, GEM-CON-BIO, SCALES).
Béla Tóthmérész (PhD) is full Professor of Ecology, Head of the Department of Ecology and director of the Environmental Sciences Doctoral School at UD. He also serves as the current president of the Hungarian Ecological Society. Dr. Tóthmérész is a well-known expert in statistical ecology and biodiversity. He is the author of two books, 100+ scientific papers with 600+ citations, the developer of the NuCoSA and DivOrd analytical software widely used in quantitative ecology, and regularly reviews articles for high-profile international journals. His current research interests include statistical ecology and landscape ecology, especially habitat fragmentation, urbanisation, edge effects, diversity measuring and management techniques.
Szabolcs Lengyel (PhD), an Assistant Professor at UD since 2006, received his PhD in Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Biology in 2001. His background is in waterbird ecology and behaviour. He currently studies the impact of habitat restoration and management on biodiversity of semi-natural landscape mosaics, and the theory and practice of biodiversity monitoring. Research collaborations are in plant-insect relationships, coevolution and aquatic ecology (impacts of river dams; alkali lakes; mayfly population ecology). He has developed and coordinated two EU LIFE-Nature conservation projects and has contributed to four EU FP6 and FP7 projects (MACMAN, EUMON, GEM-CON-BIO, SCALES).