The focus of the AFE Group is to generate knowledge and develop state-of-the-art modeling tools to advance the scientific community and support policies that enable better understanding and management of global and regional agriculture, forestry, and natural land ecosystems.

The basis for improved assessment and management of natural resources is a deep understanding of complex and interacting biophysical processes within terrestrial ecosystems. The AFE Group aims to achieve a leading position in addressing research questions requiring integrated analyses of agriculture, forestry, and natural land ecosystems at global and regional levels.

The group’s strategic ambition of biophysical tool integration for, among others, the assessment of nature-based/climate solutions, landscape restoration options, agro-forestry, or future cropland management, is at the core of the IIASA research domain on biodiversity and ecosystem services. With sustainability and biodiversity aspects as cross-cutting environmental safeguards, the group is closely aligned with the strategic direction of its host program on Biodiversity and Natural Resources. This structural and strategic setup will ensure that AFE becomes a valuable research pillar and contributor to the overarching IIASA strategy.

Models, tools, datasets

Pine tree forest

Russian Forests and Forestry Database

Forest burning

Wildfire climate impacts and adaptation model (FLAM)

Forestry and logging

Global Forest Model (G4M)


The Environmental Policy Integrated Climate-based global gridded crop model (EPIC-IIASA)



Land Management for Sustainability (LAMASUS)

Forest Fire in the summer season

Integrated Future Wildfire Hot Spot Mapping for Austria (Austria Fire Futures )

Extreme events

The Human-Tech Nexus - Building a Safe Haven to Cope with Climate Extremes (HuT)

Tropical Forest and deforested area

RESTORE+: Addressing Landscape Restoration on Degraded Land in Indonesia and Brazil


Athipthep Boonman profile picture

Athipthep Boonman

Guest Research Assistant (AFE)

No image available

Daniel Escobar Carbonari

Research Assistant (AFE)

Florian Kraxner profile picture

Florian Kraxner

Research Group Leader and Principal Research Scholar (AFE)

Christian Folberth profile picture

Christian Folberth

Senior Research Scholar (AFE)


AI generated aerial view of a vast boreal forest

17 July 2024

Forests endure as carbon sink despite regional pressures

Despite facing regional threats like deforestation and wildfires, the world's forests continue to be a powerful weapon in the fight against climate change. A new study reveals these vital ecosystems have consistently absorbed carbon dioxide for the past three decades, even as disruptions chip away at their capacity.
FLAM team

17 July 2024

Summer Researchers Join AFE to Tackle Global Wildfire Occurrences

Summer season is traditionally a period when researchers from different corners of the globe, being united by a passion for systems analysis, gather at IIASA. This year, the FLAM team has welcomed two brilliant persons with diverse backgrounds – an intern and a guest research assistant – who are eager to contribute their unique perspectives to a shared research topic. We are happy to introduce these dynamic individuals and hear their expectations as they embark on this scientific journey at IIASA with us.
Photo of wetlands

04 July 2024

ALFAwetlands: assessing mid-term project milestones

IIASA researchers are part of the ALFAwetlands project, which aims to map wetlands in the European Union and assess restoration measures to provide maximum benefits for climate and biodiversity. The project partners recently gathered for a Midterm Conference to review implementation progress, present and exchange current results, and discuss further plans.


09 April 2024

Forest science and education in Ukraine: Priorities for action

Ukraine’s forest sector is suffering unprecedented challenges. War has impacted both forests and forestry – devastating forest areas, infrastructure and industry, as well as causing ‘brain drain’ and capacity loss due to the disruption of research institutions and the displacement of students and scientists. These impacts are compounded by factors including climate change, unstable forest health dynamics, landscape fires, and an overall decrease in forest productivity.
Pine trees
Amazon forest

24 February 2022

The number of tree species on Earth

Since humans have walked this planet, we have loved categorizing things and ecology is no exception. One of the most basic ecological questions has always been the simple question of “how many?”