Search staff/organisations GB de Deyn
Name GB de Deyn

Job details
DescriptionPersonal Professor Soil ecology
OrganizationDepartment of Environmental Sciences
Organization UnitSoil Biology
Phone+31 317 482 123
Secretarial phone+31 317 486 096
Phone 2
Note for telephonist
Note by telephonist
Visiting addressDroevendaalsesteeg 3
Postal addressPostbus 47
Regular availability
Mo Tu We Th Fr
Side activities
  • - Geen nevenwerkzaamheden
    Oct 2017 - Present


I obtained my MSc in bio-engineering at Gent University, and investigated biocontrol of root-feeding nematodes by soil-borne fungi. I discovered my passion for research and obtained a PhD degree at Utrecht University, focusing on the role of soil fauna in the restoration of grassland biodiversity. Thereafter I performed research in Canada, the UK and The Netherlands, with the goal to better understand the coupling between plant traits, plant diversity, soil biodiversity and soil functioning. My ultimate aim is to be able to predict from (remotely sensed) plant traits how nutrient cycling can be steered to achieve higher nutrient use efficiency and produce more nutritious crops, reduce greenhouse gas emissions from soil and suppress the build-up of pests and diseases. In 2011 I joined Wageningen University & Research to develop this research line further; in 2016 I was promoted to Professor in Soil Ecology.

Combatting world hunger requires major breakthroughs. New systems based on other ways of cultivating and processing food. This is the only way we can continue to change the living conditions in developing countries. But such a major shift could perhaps begin with something very small, even microscopically small. Gerlinde and her team are taking part in the Fundamental Change campaign of Wageningen University and Research to break new ground.

Expert Profile
Social media
  Gerlinde De Deyn on Linkedin

Publication lists


Soil Life in Action!

Soil life is diverse and provides multiple ecosystem function. To illustrate this we make time lapse clips for educational purposes. and

The Global Soil Biodiversity Initiative promotes the translation of expert knowledge on soil biodiversity into environmental policy and sustainable land management.

Harnessing trait-based plant combinations to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions under current and future climatic conditions

In this NWO funded project we investigate how we can mitigate greenhouse gass emissions from grassland exposed to extreme weather events through combining grassland plant species based on their functional traits.

Clever Cover Cropping

Clever Cover Cropping is a NWO Green funded project in which we aim to find synergistic mixtures of cover crops for sustainable soils, in collaboration with CSA (WUR) and NIOO. In our part we mainly focus on optimising N-availability in soil whils minimizing N losses through leaching.

Skin Care for Mother Earth

In this NWO Open Mind proposal we investigate how we can promote the soil physical properties and water holding capacity through the functioning of soil microorganisms.



MOOC Soil4Life

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