Catalysis of the water gas shift reaction (WGSR) is an interesting process for the biomass based production of hydrogen. In this predominately experimental work, the catalytic refinement of wood gas derived from biomass steam gasification was investigated. Two different commercial water gas shift catalysts were tested: a Co/Mo-based catalyst which was developed for sour shift applications in gas mixtures containing hydrogen sulfide; and a Fe/Cr-based catalyst which was developed for sweet shift processes downstream sulfur removal. Both catalysts were investigated at two different experimental setups. At the "Test rig for chemical kinetics" at the Vienna University of Technology, experiments were carried out on a laboratory scale using synthetic gas mixtures simulating wood gas composition. Based on these results, empirical power law rate models were established in order to describe the reaction kinetics for both catalysts). Both models were valid for a hydrogen sulfide content of 100 vol.ppmdb. Also, a pilot plant was designed, assembled, commissioned, and optimized within this thesis in order to investigate the catalysis of the WGSR on a bigger scale using real wood gas. This facility ("Pilot plant for catalytic wood gas processing") was processing wood gas generated by means of dual fluidized bed steam gasification of wood chips at the commercial heat and power plant in Oberwart, Austria. About 2 m3/h of dry wood gas were processed over three fixed bed reactors connected in series. At this facility, the influence of various reaction parameters, the long-term stability, and the catalytic side effects were investigated. The activity of the Co/Mo-based catalyst was enhanced with increasing sulfur loads in the feed, whereas the activity of the Fe/Cr-based catalyst was decreased with higher sulfur loads. In combination with the rather low sulfur loads of the present wood gas, the performance of the Fe/Cr-based catalyst was considerably better than the performance of the Co/Mo based catalyst. Strongly depending on the reaction parameters (temperature, gas hourly space velocity, and steam to dry gas ratio) up to 95 % of the present carbon monoxide was converted to hydrogen and carbon dioxide according to the WGSR. In cooperation with other research projects, this shifted gas mixture was further processed to produce pure hydrogen based on wood gasification. Also, the usage of the generated hydrogen in a PEM fuel cell was demonstrated.