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New opened master studies in ecohydrology - start in october 2010 in Lodz, Poland. Master in environmental protection in scope of ecohydrology.

Last modified: 31 May 2010

MEP EH 2014-2016

Coordinating and Partners Organization

  • UNIVERSITY OF LODZ | Poland | (Coordinating Organization)
    Institute of Ecology and Environmental Protection
    Department of Applied Ecology
    12/16, Banacha Str., 90-237 Lodz, Poland
    Phone: (48) 42 635 44 38
    Contact person: dr Małgorzata Łapińska,;

Master in Environmental Protection in scope of Ecohydrology will be realised in the cooperation of University of Lodz (UL) and the International Institute of the Polish Academy of Sciences - European Regional Centre for Ecohydrology under the auspices of UNESCO (ERCE) in Lodz.

The course  will  have a duration of 2 years (120 ECTS) and will be provided in English. The objective is to teach the student how to understand the link between ecology and hydrology and to use it as a management tool to protect the natural environment, in context of modern methods and technologies, and with consideration of current environmental policy.

Application procedure on:

Deadline: 15 July 2014 for European and non-European students (3000 Euro per year + 200 Euro a non-reimbursable application fee)

Candidate has to send or bring oneself all required original documents to:
University of Lodz
International Relations Office
Narutowicza 65
90-131 Lodz, Poland
fax: +48 42 635 47 89l


Ecohydrology (EH) is a sub-discipline of hydrology that seeks to understand the ecological processes controlled by the hydrological cycle. It strives to utilize this understanding in management of both to enhance sustainability in river basins  (Zalewski 2009. Encyclopedia of Agrophisics. Springer).

The general assumption of EH is to reverse degradation and achieve sustainable water and ecosystems in anthropogenially-modified basins. In addition to the reduction of erosion, nutrients and pollutant emissions there is a necessity to regulate ecological processes based on understanding "water - biota interactions", from molecular (e.g., microbial loop) to ecosystem (biomanipulation) and to landscape scales (reforestation, creation land/water ecotone zones).

Two halves of ecohydrology can be distinguished:
(1)  Atmospheric/terrestrial, where the major question is how plant cover changes the dynamic water balance and nutrient/pollutant transfer in to aquatic ecosystems and,
(2)  Aquatic, where biotic interactions may change nutrient/pollutant allocation from dynamic to non-available pools, such as changing the intensity of eutrophication (by an order of magnitude).

EH concepts providing a framework for its implementation:
(1)  Hydrological : the quantification of the hydrological cycle of a basin, should be the template for functional integration of hydrological and biological processes.
(2)  Ecological : integrated processes at a river basin scale can be steered in  such a way as to enhance  the basin's carrying capacity (resilience, biodiversity and  ecosystem services).
(3)  Ecological engineering: the "key element of EH as a new tool for Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) is "dual regulation" - use of the understanding of terrestrial and aquatic organisms' adaptation to water quality and dynamics.   

It can be expressed by testable hypotheses, as follows:
(1) Hydrological processes generally regulate biota;
(2) Biota can be shaped as a tool to regulate hydrological processes;
(3) These two types of regulations can be harmonized with hydrotechnical infrastructure to achieve sustainable water and ecosystem services.

Methodology of science:
EH is integrative - a transdisciplinary, problem-solving science based upon the deductive concept, formulated from the general theory of physics, hydrology and ecology. As a transdisciplinary science, the implicit goal of which is to achieve sustainability. EH integrates not only hydrology and ecology but also considers geophysics, geology, molecular biology, genetics, mathematical modeling with socio-economical (e.g. foresight) and legal aspects.

EH goals as a problem-solving science:
(1) Slowing down the transfer of water from the atmosphere to the sea (considering flood and drought control as priorities),
(2) Reduce input and regulate the allocation of excess nutrients and pollutants in aquatic ecosystems to improve water quality, biodiversity and human health,
(3) Enhancement of ecosystem carrying capacity (resilience, biodiversity, ecosystem services for society) in harmonization with the societal needs within the framework of  Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM).

Basic references for ECOHYDROLOGY on-line:

  • Zalewski M. (ed.). 2002. Guidelines for the Integrated Management of the Watershed Phytotechnology and Ecohydrology. UNEP-IETC, UNESCO IHP , UNEP DTIE IETC. Freshwater Management Series No. 5, 188 pp.
  • Zalewski M., Wagner-Lotkowska I. (eds). 2004. Integrated Watershed Management-Ecohydrology & Phytotechnology - Manual. UNESCO IHP, UNESCO - ROSTE, UNEP-DTIE-IETC, ICE PAS, DAE UL, Venice, Osaka, Warsaw, Lodz. 208 pp.
  • Zalewski M. 2009. Ecohydrology: A framework for reversing the degradation of the Baltic Sea. BALTEX Newsletter.
  • Zalewski M. 2009. Ecohydrology for engineering harmony between environment and society. Danube News 19.

  European Regional Centre
for Ecohydrology
of the Polish Academy of Sciences

3, Tylna Str.,
90-364, Lodz, Poland
Phone: (+48) 42 681 70 06
Phone: (+48) 42 681 70 07
Fax: (+48) 42 681 30 69

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