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Our focus

Our focus

Our existence is linked closely with the secure cultivation of sufficient cultivated plants. Cultivated plants are not only an essential means of nutrition for humans; they and their ecosystems also contribute significantly to our quality of life.

Who we are?

The Julius Kühn Institute (JKI) is the Federal Research Centre for Cultivated Plants in Germany and an autonomous superior federal authority directly subordinated to the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL).

What is our aim?

The effects of climate change, the globalisation of the movement of goods and the urbanisation of society, as well as declining of natural resources and biological diversity, are increasingly endangering our resources. In order to maintain, protect and develop these, mankind is presented with a serious challenge. At the Julius Kühn Institute, we promote the sustainable production and use of our crops as basic nutrients, as renewable resources and as essential elements in our living environment. At the same time we aim to maintain plant diversity in our cultural landscapes.

What are our strengths?

We are specialised in issues regarding genetics and breeding research and the cultivation, nutrition, protection and health of cultivated plants. We carry out research in these areas and consolidate this knowledge at the Julius Kühn Institute. This puts us in a position to be able to perform our governmental tasks on a scientific basis and to provide comprehensive scientific advice to the Federal Government. The focus of our activities is healthy and highly productive robust cultivated plants whether they may be found in agriculture and horticulture, in woodland and forests, in urban areas and in cultural landscapes as a whole. Our work is based on a dynamic foundation of basic and application-oriented research and on putting research results into practice. By looking ahead we anticipate future challenges. In addition to developing innovative ideas, our main strength is long-term, continuous work on research issues which are of significance also for the future.

What is our mission?

We secure tomorrow‘s resources

Our goal is a highly productive and healthy cultivated plant. Through our research on the sustainable handling of natural resources - plants, soil and water - we secure resources for tomorrow. In doing so, we contribute to the efficiency of German and European agriculture and to securing food supplies worldwide.

Our research and activities are future-oriented

Thanks to our independent research activities, our international networking, our involvement in national and international committees and our statutory tasks we are able to identify the need for research and action very early on. We alone decide which scientific methods and approaches will be used to meet requirements and are consistent in pursuing these with our focus on tomorrow‘s society.

We provide advice on political issues

We are able to answer political questions by offering sound scientific solutions, thanks to our expertise and problem-oriented preliminary research. Our scientists are involved in numerous national, European and international committees in science and administration. This provides a broad basis for our knowledge and experience.

We assess risks

We identify and assess risks for agriculture, consumers and the environment objectively and independently and thus contribute to avoiding damage. We develop strategies for revealing risks and avoiding negative impacts as well as indicators for monitoring achievement.

We assure continuity and have the flexibility to react

Our research is characterised by continuity and long-term planning. At the same time the scope of our scientific competence gives us the flexibility to respond at short notice to current questions and problems in agriculture and consumer health protection.

Our work is transdisciplinary and we are networked

We meet today‘s demands with innovative and trans-disciplinary approaches. We are closely networked with other national and international research institutes, universities, authorities, expert associations and interest groups. We identify the need for action at an early stage and our research is focussed and future-oriented.

We assure the quality of our work

We are reliable in fulfilling our tasks according to current scientific and technical knowledge. The quality of our work is assured in all areas of statutory tasks and research by quality management, periodic evaluations and appraisals by our scientific advisory board.