Brandenburg young researcher's award honours Anne Biewald

11/25/2014 - Anne Biewald of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research has been awarded with the young researcher's prize of the state of Brandenburg. The prize honours outstanding achievements by young scientists of the state’s universities or other research institutions. “We need such motivated young researchers,” said Sabine Kunst, Brandenburg’s minister of science at the awards ceremony. “They help to bring Brandenburg forward and contribute to the state’s international competiveness. We recognise the importance of this by commending these young people - who also represent many other committed scientists in Brandenburg - for their outstanding work”.
Brandenburg young researcher's award honours Anne Biewald

The state of Brandenburg awarded Anne Biewald the Postdoc Prize for her research on virtual water. Trading food involves the trade of water that is used for the production of agricultural goods – this water is referred to by the concept of “virtual water”. The amount of that water depends heavily on the climatic conditions in the production region: it takes, for instance, 2,700 liters of water to produce 1 kilo of cereals in Morocco, while the same kilo produced in Germany uses up only 520 liters. Jointly with other researchers from PIK, landscape ecologist and economist Biewald analysed the impacts of international trade on regional water scarcity. The results show that it is not the amount of water that matters, but whether global food trade leads to conserving or depleting water reserves in water-scarce regions.

The water scarcity index developed by Biewald and her colleagues helps to provide an even better basis for the concept of virtual water, the jury of the Brandenburg young researcher’s award said. The award-winning article at the interface of natural and social sciences was highly innovative.


Link to the press release by the Brandenburg Ministry for Science, Research and Culture:

More information on the award-winning article „Valueing the impact of trade on local blue water“: