The institute as a whole is working on questions of climate change, climate impact and sustainable development with more than 10 years of experience in this field. It follows an interdisciplinary research approach linking natural and social science to study global change and its impact on ecological, economical and social systems. To understand the earth system and its components, PP8 closely cooperates with international partners. The institute plays an active role in the International Geosphere-Biosphere Program (IGBP), the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the European Climate Forum (ECF). It also coordinates a number of large European projects and is involved in establishing European Networks such as the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research.
With regard to water-related research topics, PP8 was and is involved in a number of trans-national projects as e.g. the BMBF-funded WAVES (Water Availability and Vulnerability of Ecosystems and Society in the Semiarid Northeast of Brazil) project (finished), the GLOWA (Global Water Cycle) projects GLOWA-Elbe and GLOWA-Jordan River, where transnational water availability and management belong to the central research foci.
Among others, PP8 provided and provides essential contributions to these activities in co-operation with other international partners in the field of climate analysis and modelling, which is its central work load in the HYDROCARE project.