Otto. Lange - Curriculum vitae#

Present and Previous Positions
  • 1952 Dr. rer. nat., University of Goettingen. Dissertation: "Heat and desiccation resistance of lichens as related to their distribution".
  • 1959 University teaching certification "Habilitation", University of Goettingen, subject – botany Thesis: "Investigations on temperature relations and heat resistance of desert and savannah plants in Mauritania".
  • 1953 "Wissenschaftlicher Assistent", University of Goettingen. Institute of Geobotany and Systematics
  • 1961 "Dozent (lecturer) and Wissenschaftlicher Rat", Technical University of Darmstadt, Institute of Botany
  • 1963 Full Professor, University of Goettingen, Chair of Forest Botany and Forest Genetics; Director of the Forest-Botanical Garden in Hann.Muenden
  • 1967 Full Professor, University of Wuerzburg, Department of Botany, Chair of Botany II; Director of the Botanical Garden in Wuerzburg
  • 1992 Professor emeritus (retired)

Field of Scholarship

Ecophysiological research: The objective of physiological plant ecology is to explain processes in plant ecology, such as plant performance, survival, and distribution, in physiological, biophysical, and biochemical terms. Thus, it was the first aim of my research to quantitatively analyse responses of plants in nature with respect to their environmental conditions. The major parameters on which I decided to concentrate were: photosynthesis, transpiration, productivity, growth, heat and drought resistance, and the impact of air pollution. My intention was to interpret the performance of plants through their physiological functions and their morphological features. I decided that, to solve such ecophysiological questions, a close interaction between measurement and experimentation in the field, and analysis under controlled conditions in the laboratory was required and this became characteristic of my work.. Plants growing under extreme environmental conditions showed particularly clear adaptive features with respect to drought, high and low temperatures. My work involved basic research as well as applied studies such as plant cultivation under desert conditions (e.g., in the Negev, Israel) or temperate forest trees stressed by air pollution. One half of my publications deals with cormophytes, the other half with lichens.

Honours and Awards

Honorary doctor degrees:
  • 1995 Doctor honoris causa of the Faculty for Biology, Chemistry, and Earth Sciences of the University of Bayreuth (Germany)
  • 1996 Doctor honoris causa of the Technical University of Lisbon (Portugal)
  • 2001 Doctor honoris causa of the Technical University of Darmstadt (Germany)

Prizes and Honors:
  • 1967 The "United States Board on Geographical Names" named a 2.435 m high mountain in the Admiralty Range (Southern Victoria Land, Antarctica) "Lange Peak", "in appreciation of the research on lichen ecology done in
  • 1966/67 by Lg. in Hallett Station, Antarctica"
  • 1974 Antarctic Service Medal, awarded by the United States Government
  • 1984 Bundesverdienstkreuz I. Klasse des Verdienstordens der Bundesrepublik Deutschland (Order of Merit 1st class, awarded by the Federal Republic of Germany)
  • 1986 Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz-Prize der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation), together with Prof. Ulrich Heber, Wuerzburg
  • 1988 Balzan Prize for "Applied Botany including Ecology" (together with Prof. Michael Evenari, Jerusalem, Israel), presented by the Italian President, Francesco Cossiga in Rome
  • 1990 Adalbert-Seifriz-Prize for technology transfer (together with H. Walz, Effeltrich): in appreciation of construction of ecophysiological instrumentation
  • 1991 Bayerischer Maximiliansorden für Wissenschaft und Kunst in der Abteilung fuer Wissenschaft (Bavarian Maximilian Order for Science and Art)
  • 1992 Acharius Medal of the "International Association for Lichenology" for outstanding contributions to lichenology
  • 2007 Award “Eminent Ecologist” by the Ecological Society of America

Elected member of scientific academies:
  • 1972 Member, "Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher, Leopoldina" (German Academy for Scientists, Leopoldina)
  • 1976 Corresponding member, "Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Goettingen" (Academy of Science, Goettingen)
  • 1978 Member, "Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Muenchen" (Bavarian Academy of Science, Munich)
  • 1989 Member, "Academia Europaea", London
  • 1991 Member, "Academia Scientarum et Artium Europaea", Salzburg
  • 1994 Foreign Honorary Member of the "American Academy of Arts and Sciences", Boston, Mass. USA

Honorary member:
  • 1988 Honorary Member "Regensburgische Botanische Gesellschaft" (Regensburg Botanical Society)
  • 1991 Honorary Member "British Lichen Society", London
  • 1992 Honorary Member "Gesellschaft für Mykologie and Lichenology" (Association for Mycology and Lichenology)
  • 1993 Honorary Member "Gesellschaft für Ökologie" (Association for Ecology of the German-speaking countries)
  • 2002 Honorary member “Deutsche Botanaische Gesellschaft", (DBG) (German Botanical Society)

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