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Institute of Environmental Sciences (IES)

The Institute of Environmental Sciences (IES, read more here) is part of the Jagiellonian University in Kraków – the best university in Poland, with over 600 years of history. The Institute has extensive experience in research in evolutionary biology, ecology, biodiversity, environmental science and ecotoxicology, dating back to 1970s.

Among the research groups at the IES, the Terrestrial Ecosystems and Ecotoxicology Team (TEET, read more here) focuses on studying ecotoxicology of invertebrates (effect of toxic chemicals on life history traits, populations and communities; interactions among toxicants and natural stressors; evolution of resistance) and small vertebrates (histopathology, biomarkers, genetic effects), ecosystem ecotoxicology (effect of pollutants on litter decomposition and nutrient turnover), and terrestrial ecosystems ecology (organic matter decay, biogeochemistry, biodiversity). Since 2016, TEET research interests developed towards landscape-scale environmental risk assessment (ERA) and spatial modelling of effects of pesticides on non-target arthropods (NTAs).

TEET involved research grants

TEET members were and are currently involved in several national and EU research grants, with the most recent ones:

  • B-GOOD - Giving Beekeeping Guidance by cOmputatiOnalassisted Decision making; EU H2020, Grant Agreement 817622 — H2020-SFS-2018-2020/H2020-SFS-2018-2, 2019-2023.
  • EcoStack - Stacking of ecosystem services: mechanisms and interactions for optimal crop protection, pollination enhancement, and productivity; EU H2020, Grant Agreement 773554 — H2020-SFS-2016-2017/H2020-SFS-2017-2, 2018-2023.
  • Beneficial insects in agricultural landscape: modelling effect of pesticides and landscape structure; Polish National Science Centre, Grant No 2015/19/B/NZ8/01939, 2016-2020.
  • Toxicokinetics of metals in invertebrates: models and physiology; Polish National Center for Science, Grant No 0384/B/P01/2011/40, 2011-2014.
  • CREAM − Mechanistic Effect Models for Ecological Risk Assessment of Chemicals; EC 7th Framework Project − Marie Curie Initial Training Network, Contract no. PITN-GA-2009-238148, 2009-2013.

TEET members involved in SESS

Ryszard Laskowski

TEET head
Full Professor at IES
       

ResearchGate profile

Experience

Ryszard’s experience in environmental science and ecotoxicology dates back to 1980s. His research covers such areas as biogeochemistry of pollutants, effects of pollution on organic matter decomposition and microbial communities, effects of metals and pesticides on terrestrial invertebrates, interactions between toxicants and other environmental stressors, toxicokinetics, and effects of pollution on biodiversity. Ryszard is currently involved in the EU H2020 project EcoStack, leading the work package on ecotoxicology of ecosystem service providers. In years 2012 – 2018, as an expert and member of the Scientific Panel on Plant Protection Products and their Residues (PPR) of the European Food Safety Authority, he took part in development of Scientific Opinion addressing the state of the science on risk assessment of plant protection products for in-soil organisms, where the use of population models at the landscape scale has been proposed to address species recovery and long‐term impacts of plant protection products.

As part of the SESS Team, Ryszard is supervising development of a detailed database on abundance, biology end ecology of the most important/abundant arthropod Ecosystem Service Providers (ESPs), and laboratory tests estimating effects of pesticides and their mixtures on ESPs, to support development of ESPs models within the ALMaSS modeling framework.

Agnieszka Bednarska

Assoc. Prof. at IES and at the Institute of Nature Conservation, PAS

ResearchGate profile

Experience

Agnieszka’s main interest is in the effects of stressors (including, but not limited to toxicants) and their interactions on life history traits of invertebrates, and their consequences for the population level. Her research included also such topics as costs of survival in polluted areas, toxicokinetics and sequestration of metals by invertebrates, effects of toxicants on cellular energy budget and gene expression, development and applications of Dynamic Energy Budget theory for holometabolic insects, biodiversity and beneficial insects in agricultural landscape. Agnieszka is currently leading a project „Effects of pesticides on the red mason bee Osmia bicornis in agricultural landscapes: mixture toxicity and the evolution of resistance”, funded by the Polish National Science Centre. She is also involved in ecotoxicology research within the EcoStack project, developing methods for testing ESPs insecticide resistance and testing effects of interactions between plant protection products applied in mixture or sequentially.

As part of the SESS Team, Agnieszka is supervising laboratory tests estimating effects of pesticides and their mixtures on ESPs, including Osmia bicornis and Bembidion lampros, to support development of ESPs models within the ALMaSS modeling framework.

Elżbieta Ziółkowska

Assistant Professor at IES

    

ResearchGate Profile

Experience

Elżbieta’s main interest is in the assessment of landscape structure and its influence on ecological processes, biodiversity, and distribution and dispersal of organisms. Her background is in physical geography with expertise in GIS&T and spatial modeling. Elżbieta is currently involved in two EU-funded projects: within B-GOOD she is supervising development of EU database of floral resources for bees and spatio-temporal modeling of floral resources at the landscape scale, and within EcoStack she is developing spatio-temporal models of agricultural landscapes for the purpose of population modeling.

As part of the SESS Team, Elżbieta supports and coordinates development of ALMaSS landscape models for several EU countries. She is also involved in the development of species models, including model for the red mason bee Osmia bicornis, which has been developed within the project “Beneficial insects in agricultural landscape: modelling effect of pesticides and landscape structure” funded by the Polish National Science Centre.

Danuta Frydryszak

Research Assistant at IES

    

ResearchGate profile

Experience

Danuta’s background is in terrestrial ecology. She was involved in research on ecology and ecological connectivity of brown bears (Ursus arctos) as a participant of the Carpathian Brown Bear and BearConnect projects. This resulted in her master thesis on factors influencing brown bear bed site selection at two spatial scales (fine and landscape scale). Since 2019 Danuta is part of the EcoStack research team at IES working on development of a database of biology and ecology of the most important ESPs, and constructing species sensitivity distribution (SSD) profiles for ESPs for insecticides used most commonly and/or in the largest quantities in the EU.

As part of the SESS Team, Danuta is involved in the development of new species models, including seven-spot ladybird (Coccinella septempunctata) and aphids.