Opel-Zoo Foundation Professorship Zoo Biology

It is widely accepted that zoos are an important source for research on animals, biodiversity and conservation issues. Additionally, educational work at the institution zoo have become a new subject of research in the past years. Our department wants to integrate interdisciplinary objectives and fields of research and introduce zoo biology-specific courses in the academic education at the Goethe University in Frankfurt. Studies of zoo animal behavior, mixed-species exhibits, chronobiology and environmental enrichment are part of our work. Furthermore, educational research is carried out on the evaluation of teaching concepts in zoos, visitor studies and the efficiency of zoos in knowledge transfer and attitude change regarding conservation learning. The foundation professorship provides the possibility to establish a new line of research and education in this field.

Group members

The Research Group Zoo Biology works and researches in the fields of behavioural biology, bioacoustics, microbiome analysis and conservation education. 

Would you like to get to know the team? 


The scientific work deals with topics such as conservation and environmental education, animal welfare and the comparison of zoo and wild animals. In addition, educational concepts are developed and published in appropriate journals.

A list of scientific publications and reports on the working group can be found here.


Opel-Zoo Stiftungsprofessur Zootierbiologie

Prof. Dr. Paul W. Dierkes
Biologicum, Campus Riedberg
Max-von-Laue-Str. 13
60438 Frankfurt am Main

nach vorheriger Vereinbarung


Master module behavioral biology in zoos

Jennifer Gübert T +49 69 798-42170

Conservation learning and environmental education in zoos

Matthias Kleespies

Behavioral biology of zoo animals

Anna Lena Burger  / Sebastian Schneider / Jennifer Gübert / Isabel Barbosa / Franziska Zölzer