Scientific studies


“University of Leipzig” November 2005


I performed this translation from German into English directly for the University of Leipzig. The German text was a report on various experiments carried out in the forest around Leipzig.


(Extracts – not continuous text)


Localized analysis of topsoil attributes is an essential precondition for characterizing the onsite conditions of the flooding forest with a particular focus on vegetation. Vegetation type and density has a considerable decisive influence on the entry of rainwater and the substances it contains into the soil, and should therefore be assessed as a significant factor for the development of nutrient concentrations in the soil solution. Conversion of substances in the soil depends on soil parameters; temporally and spatially variable topsoil attributes have a key function in the process.
There is a multitude of written material concerning soil attributes and substance conversion in urban flooding plains. Only a few results concerning the localized heterogeneity and temporal variability of certain soil parameters in flood plains have been published so far  (Neumeister et al. 2000, Franke & Neumeister 2000). Works concerning influences on topsoil attributes in flood plains of the White Elster due to inundation events (Krüger & Neumeister 2000), as well as due to substance inputs from stem off-flow, have been presented by Neumeister (1999).
The present appearance of the Leipzig flood plains is characterized by numerous attacks by humans on the water balance of the flood plain system. Up to the middle of the 1930s the fluvial clay sedimentation process was relatively continuous (Gutte & Sickert 1998). Up until then, an exceedingly species-rich hardwood plain with oak, elm, hornbeam, maple and ash had been developing, promoted by forestry since the 16th century. The evolution of an extraordinarily species-rich hardwood flood plain in addition to the softwood plain was made possible by the prevailing dry conditions. In phytogeographical terms, the Elster-Pleisse flooding forest (Querco-Ulmetum) is given the suffix allietosum for the facies-forming wild garlic there (Allium ursinum).
A) Plant material
In order to establish microsatellite and AFLP markers for population-genetic examinations of the ash trees in the LAK, a total of 25 leaf samples were collected  from September until November 2003. These contained 11 individuals from F. excelsior from the Leipzig floodplain forest experimental plot, together with one individual from F. pennsylvanica from the LAK plot. In order to check whether the populations from various regions can be delimited using this marker type, five individuals from the Hamburg area were included in this set in addition. This involved two adult trees and three young trees from a presumably planted private garden in Hamburg Othmarschen. At the same time, the reproducibility of the markers was checked via double sampling from 8 ash individuals from the LAK. The characteristics (diameter at chest height, tree height, position co-ordinates, origin, etc.) of the sampled individuals are indicated in table 1.  From this set, the four F. excelsior 2312/j, HHd, 1101/ b and 2101/j2 were used for establishing the AFLP method (see table 1).


“Demographic and Socio-Economic Trends” March 2007


I translated this from German into English, via an agency. The agency’s client was an institute in Bonn.


In next the ten to fifteen years people in North America and Europe will be looking different in the truest sense of the word. They will be becoming old. A growing number of them will have migrated. They will more often live in towns and cities and despite their increasing average age, they will be more mobile or at least equally as mobile as today. They will be living alone or in couples even more commonly than up to now. Fewer and fewer will be living in a traditional father-mother-child family. In most households, disposable income will rise only slightly or even stagnate. For many, consumer opportunities will be limited due to increasing obligations to save for the future. Although more people will be technically better trained in the future, not all, however, will be able to keep up with the growing qualification demands. Education and qualification differences will increase. More people from the employable section of the population will be pursuing gainful employment than up to now. However, working hours per earner will fall. At the same time a growing proportion of the population will have free use of its time, since it is excluded from employed life. It will use a major part of this time for utilising media. Reading newspapers will continue to be a part of this. Yet increased use of other media, such as the Internet, can be predicted for older people too.
Furthermore, the populations of North America and Europe will become even more heterogeneous. Objective features, such as skin colour, household income, educational status or employment status will become more multifarious. This also applies for ideals, religious views, political opinions, desires and life goals. Even fewer people than today will be able to be clearly or exclusively assigned to certain socio-economic strata, ethno-cultural population groups or social milieus.
The most important trends:
Progressive ageing
Figures in North America will continue to grow; in Europe, by contrast, to stagnate or fall up to 2020. More serious than the quantitative changes, however, are the changes in the populations’ age structure. Number and proportion of over 49-year-olds are rising considerably on both continents. On the other hand, in North America the number of particularly consumer-oriented 15 to 49-year-olds will probably increase only slightly, while in Europe it could fall by almost 48 million or, respectively,13 percent. The increase in over 49-year-olds and in the extremely elderly in particularly will change society’s needs and interests profoundly.
Continuing migration
Considerably more people will also continue to migrate to North America and Europe than emigrate from them. According to the UNO’s projections, by 2020 the migration balance in North America will be around 20 and in Europe, around 11 million. Migrants will thus make up between 10 and 20 – even more in some places – percent of the population not only in North America, but also in most European countries. Migrants from regions fur-ther away will come in even greater numbers than in the past. The ethnic and cultural mix will thus increase.
Further urbanisation
According to the UNO’s projections, the urban population in North America will grow by around 50 and in Europe by just under 12 million by 2020. In North America, 85 percent of inhabitants will then live in towns and cities, in Europe, 75 percent. However, continued urbanisation is taking place at differing rates, particularly in Europe.