ISOE is divided into six research units. The scientists are supported by their colleagues from internal services, knowledge communication and public relations, and science coordination as well as by the institute’s own reference library. There is also a coordinator for consultancy and a coordinator for academic cooperation and qualification of young scientists.

ISOE combines the organisational principles of a scientific institution with those of a non-profit research company and has the legal form of a non-profit limited liability company. The partners of ISOE consider themselves as fiduciary owners and therefore take responsibility for the long-term existence of ISOE through decisions along strategic development lines. They appoint and control the management and conclude target agreements with the institute’s management. They also appoint the Scientific Advisory Board. Spokesperson of the institute’s associates board is Dr. Alexandra Lux, deputy spokesperson is Dr. Jutta Deffner.

Executive Board

The institute is managed by Dr. Thomas Jahn (spokesperson and scientific director), Dr. Diana Hummel, Dr. Martina Winker and Frank Schindelmann (administrative director).

Scientific Advisory Board

The Scientific Advisory Board is made up of seven renowned scientists from various disciplines and research facilities. It advises the Institute on matters of quality assurance and networking with other research establishments. It helps to further develop the Institute's profile as a high-performance, transdisciplinary research institute for sustainability research. The international and interdisciplinary composition of the Advisory Committee represents the essential fields of expertise and disciplines crucial to the Institute's further development.

  • Prof. Dr. Bernd Hansjürgens (Chairperson)
    Helmholtz-Zentrum für Umweltforschung – UFZ
  • Prof. Dr. Heike Egner
    Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt
  • Prof. Dr. Christoph Küffer
    Hochschule für Technik Rapperswil
  • Prof. Dr. Stephan Lessenich
    Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
  • Prof. Dr. Annette Spellerberg
    TU Kaiserslautern
  • Prof. Dr. Stefan Uhlenbrook
  • Prof. Dr. Ines Weller
    Universität Bremen


As an independent and non-commercial research facility, ISOE mainly finances itself with public project funds and commissions awarded by tender. Furthermore we carry out contract work for industry, local authorities or associations. ISOE receives institutional funding from the state of Hesse.