Plant Biology Department, Lincoln University

Rainer, who came to NZ from Vienna in Austria in 1993, is Professor of Plant Biology at Lincoln University, where he studies plant-environment interactions. His work particularly focuses on pasture plants. This includes the development of clover germplasm for improved water-use and nutrient-use efficiency for future pastures under a changing climate. He also studies horticultural crops, especially the grapevine, to help increase crop quality characteristics and environmental sustainability.

Rainer enjoys teaching plant biology at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. His teaching practice was recognised by an Ako Aotearoa Award for Sustained Excellence in Tertiary Teaching (New Zealand’s highest tertiary teaching award). He has developed strong agricultural research links in the Pacific Islands region with tertiary and development partners.

Rainer enjoys commuting to Lincoln on his e-bike, going uphill on mountain bikes and downhill on skis.