April 2022

Paper entitled "Thermohydrological impact of forest disturbances on ecosystem-protected permafrost." will be published in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences (


December 2021

Simone Maria Stünzi has successfully defended her PhD thesis entitled “Heat and water exchange processes in boreal permafrost”!

Merit for Dr. Jan Nitzbon

In recognition of his outstanding achievements, Dr. Jan Nitzbon was awarded the 15th Potsdam “Nachwuchswissenschaftspreis” for his dissertation “Modeling the evolution of ice-rich permafrost landscapes in response to a warming climate”, which was awarded “summa cum laude”. Dr. Nitzbon received his doctorate in geography from the Humboldt University in Berlin and carried out his research at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Center for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), in Potsdam. The work closes a knowledge gap in Earth system research and provides, for the first time, insights into why permafrost in the Arctic reacts faster and more intensely to global warming than previously predicted.

August 2021

Dr. Jan Nitzbon, scientist at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) was awarded the 2020 Wladimir Köppen Prize for his doctoral thesis, which represents a valuable contribution toward refining simulations of permafrost development: in it, he demonstrates the importance of small-scale landscape characteristics, since they influence the amount of greenhouse gases released as a result of thawing. In the future, his findings could help provide a more realistic picture of permafrost thawing.

AWI press release

original press release

Paper entitled "Sensitivity of ecosystem-protected permafrost under changing boreal forest structures." has been published in the open-access journal Environmental Research Letters (

July 2021

The American financial news agency Bloomberg reports on the article successfully published in Cryosphere on the consequences of permafrost degradation on the infrastructure in arctic regions (see May 2021):

Paper entitled "Monitoring the Transformation of Arctic Landscapes: Automated Shoreline Change Detection of Lakes Using Very High Resolution Imagery" has been published in the open-access journal Remote Sensing (

The framework program FONA (Research on Sustainability) initiated by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research promotes research projects on climate change and climate protection. Against the background of possible tipping elements in the next world climate report of the IPCC, the work of the PermaRisk project was also reported here:

May 2021

Paper entitled "Consequences of permafrost degradation for Arctic infrastructure - bridging the model gap between regional and engineering scales" has been published in The Cryosphere (

March 2021

In March 2021 Lisa-Marie Assmann joined the Perma-Risk Group as a developer. She completed her bachelor's degree in Cologne in 2018 and is currently working on her master's thesis at Beuth University. Her master thesis is supposed to be about a benchmark for distributed machine learning. In the PermaRisk group, she is responsible for developing a map view for the simulated CryoGrid data.

Rebecca Rolph participated in Nunataryuk General Assembly (

Rebecca Rolph was key note speaker at ESA Climate Change Initiative Sea State meeting.  Talk title: "The impact of sea state: from coastal erosion to sailing"

Paper entitled "Effects of multi-scale heterogeneity on the simulated evolution of ice-rich permafrost lowlands under a warming climate" has been published in The Cryosphere (

February 2021

Rebecca Rolph hosted and organized the GeoX Talk Series (

January 2021

Paper entitled "Variability of the surface energy balance in permafrost-underlain boreal forest" has been published in Biogeosciences (


December 2020

Rebecca Rolph participated at the AGU Virtual Conference as:

  • Co-convener and chair of AGU 2020 Session "Arctic coastal dynamics: rates, impacts, hazards and implications for the future"
  • Lead author on AGU Poster "Towards a physics-based parameterization of pan-Arctic shoreline erosion"
  • Co-author on poster: "A pan-Arctic initiative on the spatial and temporal dynamics of Arctic coasts".

November 2020

Since November 1st, 2020 Jan Nitzbon has been a PostDoc in the PermaRisk project. There he will further develop the CryoGrid permafrost model and apply it to thermokarst processes in ice-rich permafrost. He also deals with the question of the extent to which the permafrost region in the northern hemisphere could represent a so-called tipping element in the climate system.

June 2020

Soraya Kaiser receives a completion scholarship for excellent female doctoral candidates from the Family Fund of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.

The funding is awarded for six months and starts in November 2020.

March 2020

Soraya Kaiser receives another year of funding from Christiane Nüsslein-Volhard-Foundation that supports excellent female scientists in the field of experimental natural sciences with children.