Dr. Katja Heubach, biologist by training, is the director of Palmengarten and Botanical Garden Frankfurt am Main. These historical institutions house one of the largest plant collections worldwide in numerous greenhouses, a wide variety of themed gardens in the open, as well as in their nursery. More than 13,000 species from all continents in the Palmengarten and 4,000 species in the Botanical Garten give visitors a unique impression of the earth's biological diversity. The Palmengarten will celebrate its 150th anniversary in 2021. The Botanical Garden goes back to a foundation of Johann Christian Senckenberg in 1763. It was merged with the Palmengarten in 2012.
Before, Katja Heubach worked as adviser to the GIZ ValuES project (2016-2108) that aimed at supporting decision makers in recognizing and integrating ecosystem services into their policy making, planning and implementation. The global project was active in more than 20 countries. Katja Heubach’s focus lied on the collaboration between ValuES and the in 2012 established Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). ValuES contributed to the capacity building of IPBES, particularly with regards to valuation issues, and supports the outreach of the Platform.
IPBES was also one of Katja Heubach’s major work areas in her previous post with the Netzwerk-Forum zur Biodiversitätsforschung Deutschland (NeFo, 2013-2016).
Katja Heubach studied Biology at the Goethe University Frankfurt am Main, with majors in ecology and the diversity of plants and animals. After her diploma theses on aquatic ecology, she worked as advisor for the funding of projects in nature conservation and development cooperation (on behalf of Norddeutsche Stiftung für Umwelt und Entwicklung and Niedersächsische Lottostiftung), and in parallel completed post graduate studies on sustainable development cooperation. Subsequently, she began a dissertation on the economic valuation of ecosystem services in West African savanna ecosystems, at the Biodiversity and Cimate Research Centre (BiK-F) in Frankfurt.