Prof. Dr. Hans Pretzsch


Forest Yield Science

Professor emeritus since 01.10.2023

Academic Career and Research Areas

Prof. Pretzsch (b. 1957) explores growth regularities of pure and mixed forest stands from organ to stand level. In particular, he examines growth reactions under stress conditions and integrates the processes and structures he uncovers into dynamic system overview models. An important source of data for his research comes from the network of long-term forest study sites in Bavaria. These have been monitored since 1860 and Prof. Pretzsch is currently overseeing the work.

Prof. Pretzsch studied forest science and biostatistics at Munich’s Ludwig Maximilian University (LMU) and Albert Ludwig University in Freiburg. He obtained his doctorate in forest science at LMU in 1985, followed by a period as a research assistant. From 1992 to 1994, he was Head of Forest Growth at the North-West Germany Forest Research Center (NW-FVA) in Göttingen. He completed his lecturer qualification in forest growth, biometry and modeling in 1992. Since 1994, Prof. Pretzsch has been Director of the Chair of Forest Yield Science, initially at LMU and since 1999 at TUM.


  • Dr. h.c. of the University of Valladolid, Spain (2024)
  • Appointed „Highly Cited Researchers", in 2019 and 2020 i. e. on the list of the most cited researchers worldwide
  • Silvicultural Award 2015, Institute of Royal Chartered Foresters, Edinburgh, United Kingdom (2016)
  • Dr. h.c. der Universität Prag, Tschechische Republik (2008)
  • Wilhelm Leopold Pfeil-Preis, Toepfer Stiftung F.V.S. (2004)

Liang J (et al.): "Positive biodiversity-productivity relationship predominant in global forests". Science. 2016; 354(6309): aaf8957-1-aaf8957-12.


Pretzsch H, Biber P, Schütze G, Uhl E, Rötzer Th: "Forest stand growth dynamics in Central Europe have accelerated since 1870". Nat. Commun. 2014; 5:4967; doi:10.1038/ncomms5967 


Pretzsch H: Forest dynamics, growth and yield. From measurement to model. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer, 2010.


Pretzsch H: “Species-specific allometric scaling under self-thinning. Evidence from long-term plots in forest stands”. Oecologia. 2006; 146, 572-583.


Pretzsch H, Biber P, Dursky J: “The single tree-based stand simulator SILVA: construction, application and evaluation“. Forest Ecology and Management. 2002; 162(1): 3-21.