Natural Resource Management

Ingenieurwesen und ArchitekturNatural Resource Management (NRM)

The Environment is now under increasing pressure from human activities. Natural resources are both consumed and degraded, clearly questioning the sustainability of our societies.

The HES⁠-⁠SO in Geneva (Haute école du paysage, d'ingénierie et d'architecture de Genève - hepia) offers the major "Natural Resource Management".

The goal is to provide students with the skills to design and implement the integrated and sustainable management of ecosystems and their productions at the regional scale of a catchment or an ecoregion.


The objectives of this major «Natural Resource Management» are to provide the students with the following skills:

  • Designing a scientific and/or technical project related to conservation or management of ecosystems. The learning module is conducted through the development and the planning of several interdisciplinary and participatory projects, conducted at the scale of the catchment.
  • Characterising ecosystems and their interrelationships. The module includes the functioning of ecosystems, their integration into landscapes, their dynamics of degradation and their dysfunctions.
  • Identifying legal framework, stakeholders and conflicts of interest related to the use of natural resources. The legal framework, actors and institutions in charge of management are identified in this module, as well as ecosystem uses and services.
  • Preserving and/or restoring ecosystems and their functions. The purpose of this module is to define the objectives of conservation, exploitation and/ or restoration of ecosystems and landscapes, design appropriate measures, plan implementation and develop a monitoring system, at local and regional scale.

Major Modules

The “Natural Resource Management” major provides five courses in the field of environmental sciences. All courses are taught at the Haute école du paysage, d'ingénierie et d'architecture de Genève - hepia.

Module Name (PDF)
ECTS Semester
S17 - Ecological assessment and functioning of landscapes - (PDF) 4 Autumn
S18 - Conservation of natural and agro-ecosystems - (PDF)
4 Autumn
S19 - Conservation in context : Social Sciences tools for conservation - (PDF) 4 Autumn
S20 - Ecosystem restoration (natural, rural or urban environments) - (PDF)
4 Spring
S21 - Sustainable and optimized use of the natural resources - (PDF) 4 Spring

The specialization of Natural Resource Management is a member of the cluster “Environmental” of the MSLS cooperation, this cluster offers six cluster-specific modules. Out of the six cluster-specific modules, at least three have to be completed.

Cluster-specific Modules "Environmental" ECTS


E1 - Journal Club Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences


E2 - Life Cycle Assessment


E3 - Sustainable Natural Resource Management


Autumn, block week
E4 - Ecological Infrastructure in Landscapes 


Autumn, block week
E5 - Biodiversity


E6 - Water Management for Households, Industry and Agriculture



The module descriptions of the cluster-specific modules “Environmental” are available on

Example of topics for Master Theses

  • Climate change and restoration of streams
  • Monitoring network of agricultural pests in a context of climate changes
  • Biodiversity assessment of anthropic ecosystems (as gravel-pit ponds or urban habitats)
  • Development of a census method to assess wild mammals densities
  • Bio-physical properties of soils as affected by agricultural practices
  • Biological control method against  tree pathogens
  • Bio-engineering using  plant species
  • Assessment of the impact of human activities in nature reserves


 Zolt Vecsernyés

Dr Zsolt Vecsernyés

Professor of Hydrology
Competences in numerical hydrology and flood routing, numerical and physical modeling of stream hydraulics sediment transport and driftwood management, numerical and physical modeling of inland water hydrodynamics. Urban hydrology and hydraulics. River revitalization


 Beat Oertli

Dr Beat Oertli

Professor of Aquatic Sciences
Competences in ecological assessments, in the monitoring of waterbodies, in freshwater biodiversity


 François Lefort

Dr François Lefort

Professor of genetics, plant breeding, phytopathology and microbiological control
Competences in genetics, biological control, phytopathology and biotechnology (in vitro cell culture, molecular diagnostics and profiling) for applications in life sciences


Emmanuel Lierdeman

Lecturer for agronomy and forestry: agro-ecology, livestock and pastoralism, agroforestry, complex systems, silvopastoralism, and forestry


 Pascal Boivin

Dr Pascal Boivin

Professor of Soil Science and Substrates
Soil physics, pedology, saline and sodic soils, irrigation, redox processes in soils, technosols for environmental and urban application


 Patrice Prunier

Patrice Prunier

Professor of botanic and plant ecology
Competences in botanic, plant ecology & restoration.


 Claude Fischer

Dr Claude Fischer

Professor of Zoology and Wildlife Management
Competences in ecology, management and monitoring of wildlife, as well as general & applied ecology.


Nicolas Delabays

Professor for the development and implementation of original and efficient agronomic solutions


 MLS Professor AFS NRM

Dr Andrea Finger-Stich

Lecturer of Social Sciences
Competences in social sciences, tourism in natural areas, ethic of environment, forestry


 Sophie Rochefort

Dr Sophie Rochefort

Professor in applied entomology
Competences in entomology (management of insect pests, insect-plant interactions), biodiversity, monitoring, and ecosystemic services by arthropods in urban and agricultural areas.


 Jean-François Rubin

Dr Jean-François Rubin

Professor in aquatic ecology
Competences in fish ecology and management, stream and lake ecosystems, environmental education, climate change impacts on waterbodies


 Pierre-André Frossard

Pierre-André Frossard

Professor in ecological restoration
Competences in restoration of streams and rivers, Bio-engineering, Technical framework and Execution of natural amenities


 Franck Cattaneo

Dr Franck Cattaneo

Professor in aquatic ecology
Competences in freshwater ecology (streams and rivers), management and conservation of fish populations, ecological connectivity, environmental flows


 Yves Hausser

Yves Hausser

Professor in Sustainable use of resources
Sustainable use of natural resources, management systems focusing on participatory approaches


Head of the Master Life Sciences
Urban Frey
HES⁠-⁠SO Master
Avenue de Provence 6
CH-1007 Lausanne
T + 41 58 900 00 02


T +41 58 900 01 10
Google Maps / Access


 Pastille MLS en png

Contact Major

Dr Beat Oertli
Haute école du paysage, d'ingénierie
et d'architecture de Genève - hepia

4 rue de la Prairie
CH-1202 Genève
T +41 22 546 68 83



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