In the field of collective behaviour, the University of Konstanz and the Max Planck Institute of Animal Behavior jointly established the Cluster of Excellence “Centre for the Advanced Study of Collective Behaviour” (EXC 2117) in addition to the “Centre for Visual Computing of Collectives” (VCC) currently under construction. These are top-level leading research centres worldwide, that employ the most modern technologies to examine the basic principles of collective behaviour in different organisms and at different organizational levels, including humans.
Konstanz’s Max Planck Institute of Animal Behavior developed out of the former Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Radolfzell. It is now an independent institute that contributes significantly to the University of Konstanz’s top-level research. Research at the institute explores animal collectives such as fish, birds, baboons, locusts and fruit bats, among others. Using cutting-edge tracking technology and data analysis, the researchers will uncover the complex behavioural patterns and mechanisms that guide coordination among animal collectives. Major achievements in this field of research include establishing the space-based ICARUS animal observation system aboard the International Space Station (ISS) as well as the University of Konstanz’s receiving an Alexander von Humboldt Professorship for Professor Margaret Crofoot, a pioneer in the area of movement ecology.