General Information

Overview of activities of Institute of Environmental Sciences


logo CML

logo CML

The Institute of Environmental Sciences (CML) is an institute of the Faculty of Science of Leiden University. The main area of work is research and education in the multidisciplinary field of environmental sciences.

In 2012 the tenured and non tenured staff consists of about 25 fte including 3.3 fte supporting staff. The interdisciplinary character is reflected in the various staff members' backgrounds, such as: ecologists, chemical engineers, agricultural engineers, physicists etc..

The Institute is directed by Prof. dr. A. Tukker. 

An organisation chart of CML is available


The research projects of the Institute draw from both natural and social sciences. CML has two research departments:

  • Conservation Biology (CML-CB), dealing with issues of biodiversity and natural resources in rural areas of the Western and nonwestern world and;
  • Industrial Ecology (CML-IE) , dealing with research into the development of tools for decision making on sustainable production and consumption.

Field research (often carried out jointly with students) takes place both in industrialised countries and non-industrialised countries. A major proportion of CML’s research is contract research. Clients include the Dutch government, the EU, private companies, and other organizations. Acquisition and acceptance of contract research are geared towards CML's research themes.


CML's education programme aims for providing knowledge, insight and skills which are required in multidisciplinary efforts to analyse environmental problems and to contribute to their solution. Bringing together students from different disciplinary backgrounds is therefore a key feature of CML’s educational philosophy.

CML offers a variety of programs and courses, project groups and individual research internships, both at the graduate and postgraduate level.

At graduate level CML offers a broad multidisciplinary Minor Sustainable Development. This 30 EC (half year) program is meant for students from all faculties and disciplines.

At postgraduate level the education program is oriented to two areas of interest:

  • MSc 'Industrial Ecology' , dealing with tools and practices for sustainable production and consumption; this MSc started in September 2004 and is organised together with Delft Technical University.
  • Msc specialisation 'Evolution, Biodiversity and Conservation' as part of the MSc in Biology: this MSc specialisation is organised together with the Institute of Biology Leiden, the Dutch National Herbarium and Naturalis, the Natural History Museum in Leiden.


CML has the following advisory councils:

Advisory Board
The Advisory Board is an external Advisory Council, to advice the Board of Directors of CML about general strategies, research and education activities and evaluation (Dutch: visitatie) procedures

Science Council

The Science Council is an internal Advisory Council to advice the Board of the Institute and consists of the full and associate professors of the Institute.

Institute's Council

The institute's council (IR) is informed by the management team on the general aspects and important developments.


A digital brochure about the Institute of Environmental Sciences (CML) at Leiden University is available in PDF-format

Last Modified: 18-09-2014