Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL



Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and
Landscape Research WSL


Z├╝rcherstrasse 111
8903 Birmensdorf

Phone +41 1 739 21 11
Fax +41 1 739 22 15


Research priorities

Sustainable Landscape Use including Forestry

  • Regional development
  • Sustainable use of natural resources
  • Ecosystems, ecological long-term risks and forest health
  • Social and economic systems

Dealing with Natural Hazards

  • Snow, glaciers, permafrost (cryosphere research)
  • Natural hazardous events
  • Integral risk management

International activities

WSL represents a node in Switzerland in international research network

  • Dendro Net: Focusing on dendrochronological research
  • ICP-Forests, Level I & II: International Co-operative Programme on Assessment and Monitoring of Air Pollution Effects on Forests
  • ILTER: International Long-Term Ecological Research network
  • ICP-IM: International Co-operative Programme on Integrated Monitoring of Air Pollution Effects on Ecosystems
  • IPCC: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
  • COST E-21: Contributions of forests and forestry to mitigate greenhouse effects
  • INTAS: Early Response Areas for Climate Change in Eurasia
  • LUSTRA: Land-use strategies for reducing net greenhouse gas emissions
  • Teaching and training at different European universities
  • Partner in several projects of European Framework Programmes

WSL maintains a Transeuropean transect for ecological research from East to West and runs a Branch Office in Russia.

Institute description

WSL is a multidisciplinary research institute with a correspondingly wide variety of tasks. WSL competently attends to the public asset 'Sustainable Landscape Use' and 'Dealing with Natural Hazards'. It performs top quality research and applies research findings. In this way, WSL contributes to improving our quality of life, to protecting us from natural hazards and to preserving biodiversity. At the same time, WSL is adding to our knowledge about the multifaceted interrelationsships in Swiss ecosystems.