Dr. Benjamin Kupilas (PhD) works as a Fellow in the fields of biodiversity and nature-based solutions (NBS) at Ecologic Institute. The main focus of his scientific work lies on issues related to biodiversity loss. He is particularly interested in measures to mitigate loss, for example through conservation, restoration and the sustainable management of ecosystems. Benjamin Kupilas has a profound understanding of key biodiversity threats and trends, as well as an extensive knowledge of relevant biodiversity policies, specifically at the national and European levels. He has experience in coordinating and implementing inter- and transdisciplinary research projects with biodiversity-related topics at their core. Some of his recent projects and publications focus on the effects of NBS on biodiversity and ecosystem functioning in both cities and agricultural landscapes. In addition, he is increasingly concerned with funding instruments in connection with mainstreaming NBS. A native German speaker, Benjamin is fluent in English and has a good knowledge of Norwegian.
At Ecologic Institute, Benjamin Kupilas works primarily on current processes in the field of biodiversity and NBS at national and European levels. An example for that is his involvement in the project BioVibeS which aims to analyse the extent to which biodiversity benefits have been integrated into the application of urban development funding by German municipalities. He is also part of a project that works on NBS as a tool to improve climate adaptation in German cities and the upcoming project GoNaturePositive, amongst others. Benjamin Kupilas also participates in the Think Sustainable Europe WG Biodiversity & Natural Capital.
Prior to his work at Ecologic Institute, Benjamin Kupilas worked as a research scientist at the Norwegian Insitute for Water Research (NIVA), Norway's leading research institute in the fields of water and the environment. He coordinated the SABICAS project on NBS in Norwegian river catchments, funded by the research council of Norway. He also worked at the science-policy-interface, specifically at the European level. For example, in the European Topic Center Biodiversity and Ecosystems (ETC-BE) where he was co-leading a task to explore the potential of upscaling NBS in the EU. He was furthermore a member of the EU COST action management committee "Knowledge conversion for enhancing management of European riparian ecosystems and services" (2021-2022) and worked as a postdoctoral researcher in the Biodiversa project CROSSLINK to improve the understanding of cross-habitat linkages between blue and green infrastructures to optimize the management of biodiversity in both rural and urban landscapes (2017-2019). Since 2018, Benjamin Kupilas is also affiliated to the Institute of Landscape Ecology at the University of Münster (Germany), where he teaches in the field of Applied Landscape Ecology and Environmental Planning.
Benjamin Kupilas holds a PhD in Aquatic Ecology and River Restoration from the University of Duisburg-Essen (Germany) and a Diploma degree in Landscape Ecology from the University of Münster. His PhD was linked to the REFORM project.
He has received fellowships and scholarships from The German Federal Environmental Foundation (DBU) and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), amonst others.