1. Education

The climatologist Dénes Berényi established the meteorological station of the University in 1928. Thanks to the perpetual research based on the meteorological observations Institute of Meteorology became an independent part of the Institute of Geography with the head of Dénes Berényi in 1934. As the government started the modernization of the university education system the Institute of Meteorology transformed into the Department of Meteorology in 1951, headed by Professor Dénes Berényi. Hence education of meteorology broadened considerably.
When Professor Berényi retired in 1968, János Justyák became the head of the Department. During the early 70s another modernization was arranged at the University; curricula of the various specializations changed significantly, so did the education activity of the Department. As Károly Tar has been employed in 1971, besides the meteorological courses (e.g., General Meteorology, Climatology, Meteorological Instruments) physics, mathematics and computer science related to geography were offered for geography-major students. Furthermore, the Department of Meteorology encouraged the Institute of Geography to set up a computer lab for students specialized in geography.


The traditional education system of the Faculty of Sciences, at the Kossuth Lajos University has been completely transformed into credit system in 1993. New specializations have been defined: high-school teachers specialized solely in geography (in the traditional system teacher training required two majors), geographers specialized either in landscape protection or regional and settlement planning. The Department of Meteorology offers 11 undergraduate courses in the four full-time programs of the Institute of Geography. Besides, the Department of Meteorology offers the following graduate courses for PhD students: Applied Mathematical Statistics in Geosciences, Agricultural Meteorology, and Climate-Topography Interactions. Furthermore two undergraduate courses are offered for part-time students with correspondence status: General Meteorology and Climatology.

By now the University has transformed in so many senses. Now it is called University of Debrecen and it has BSc, MSc with (various specializations) and PhD trainings as well. Department of Meteorology belongs to the Earth Sciences Institution.

2. Research

Research activity of the Institute of Meteorology was focused primarily on agricultural meteorology, and secondly on climatology. Micro-scale climate studies were initiated by Dénes Berényi in Hungary, he analysed small-scale climates of several cultivated plant fields, and effects of various climatic factors on plant growth and yield. He published a fundamental book titled Mikroklimatologie: Mikroklima der Bodennahen Atmosphäre on micro-scale climatology in German in 1967.


Further investigations and publications focused on the analysis of observed meteorological and climatological variables. Gábor Szász wrote his candidate thesis on the general characteristics of the small-scale climates of grain croplands, while János Justyák investigated effects of different agricultural techniques on small-scale climate of vineyards, and analysed energy and water budget of vineyards. Meanwhile, Justyák launched and controlled research on forest climatology first in the Hortobágy, and in the frame of the Síkfőkút Project organized by János Justyák and Pál Jakucs from 1972. The main goal of the Síkfőkút Project had been to determine the productivity of the forest. After several years of research and many  publications in journals a final report had been published by the Department of Meteorology, the Hungarian Meteorological Service, and the Sopron University in 1997. The financial source for this summary titled Investigations of Energy and Water Budget of the Síkfőkút Forest Considering Deforestation and Climate Change was provided by the Hungarian National Science Research Foundation.
Climatological research activity broadened as Károly Tar has been employed by the Department. He developed a mathematical model for the incoming radiation of inclined surfaces, this model helped the investigations of energy budget of vineyards. Then, Tar studied the statistical characteristics of wind and potential use of wind energy in Hungary. His research resulted in the defense of his candidate thesis in 1986. A revised version of his thesis Complex Statistical Analysis of the Hungarian Wind Climate was published by the Hungarian Meteorological Service. In the early 90s he focused on the challenging problem of global climate change. Lately, his interest turned to answering the question whether  the wind climate of Hungary changed significantly during the last 20 years and if yes how it is related to the global climate change. This research is financed by the Hungarian National Science Research Foundation. From 1999 Károly Tar has won the Széchenyi Professor Award because of his education and research activity.


A new field of research in the profile of the Department is urban climate, which has been introduced by Andrea Kircsi and Sándor Szegedi PhD. since 1999. Urban climate research is focused on the effects of urban surfaces on the alterations of the temperature (urban heat island), wind and humidity field and human comfort parameters. The Department started a joint project with the Department of Climatology and  Landscape Ecology of the University of Szeged in 2001. The aim of this project is to carry out a comparative analysis on the climate of the two cities.
The Department of Meteorology at the Kossuth Lajos University encouraged and organized several conferences, scientific meetings during the last 10-12 years; e.g., Applied Mathematical Statistics and Computer Science in Meteorology (1987), Memorial Symposium for the 145th Anniversary of Climatologist Kabos Hegyfoky (1992), Forest and Climate (1994, 1997, 2000), Memorial Symposium for the 95th Anniversary of Professor Dénes Berényi (1995), 1st National Conference of PhD Students in Meteorology (1996). Our goal was to provide researchers with excellent opportunities for discussion.
Publications of the Department of Meteorology consist of approximately 400 journal papers, approximately 20 books, and many articles in popular newspapers.

The Department of Meteorology looks for possible cooperation with other universities or research centres.
The most of the latest research projects at the Department of Meteorology are related to wind climatology, wind energy and wind field modelling.