EURAC is an interdisciplinary non-commercial research centre based in Bolzano, Italy with a focus on mountain related research. The mission of the EURAC Institute for Applied Remote Sensing is fusing remote sensing techniques with interdisciplinary approaches for integrated environmental monitoring and assessment in mountain regions.
Its research fields and projects address the current most pressing societal challenges within the context of mountain environments, such as sustainable use of natural resources (agriculture, forestry, and nature protection), the role of mountains as water towers and risk management in the context of natural hazards and climate change. Its work is carried out in close collaboration with a number of decisional authorities in the province of Bolzano.
EURAC has been involved in several EU, national and regional project on ecosystem monitoring, amongst them two GMES/COPERNICUS Downstream Services MS.MONINA (habitats) and EUFODOS (forest). Moreover, EURAC runs its own test sites, which are registered in international ecosystem monitoring networks (LTER).
Ruth Sonnenschein is Senior Scientist at the EURAC Institute for Applied Remote Sensing. She graduated in Environmental Sciences and received a PhD in Land Change Science and Remote Sensing where she utilized long-time series of satellite data to detect heterogeneous pattern of land use/cover changes and analysed their drivers. Her current research focuses on the mapping of ecosystems and habitat types in complex mountain environments.
In Ecopotential she is responsible for the tasks land use/cover, ecosystem and habitats as well the change detection modules.