Plant Phenotyping across borders: overcoming technological and structural bottlenecks



Prof. Uli Schurr (ForschungszentrumJülich IBG-2: Plant Sciences and Chair for Plant Sciences at University Duesseldorf)

Date:  May 29th  2020 / Time: 14:00   (Berlin Time) /  7.00 AM (CDT)

Watch the recorded webinar online 

Link to  IBG-2 Website



Quantitative analysis of structure and function of plants has become a major bottleneck that is needed to identify the associations between phenotypic and genotypic data that is required for practical applications and basic science. A coordinated effort is required to effectively address this gap and enable a close interaction between phenotyping experts and users from different disciplines to specifically address the demand and requirements of different disciplines.

The EU funded research infrastructure projects such as EPPN2020 or the ESFRI listed project EMPHASIS aim at integrating the plant phenotyping community in Europe and to address this bottleneck. While the EPPN2020 project enables practical access to plant phenotyping installations for user driven plant phenotyping experiments in Europe, the EMPHASIS project develops a long term sustainable operation of the infrastructure.

In this presentation, I will introduce the current state of the art in the plant phenotyping community by presenting the currently available infrastructure with best case examples of the application of this infrastructure. Plant phenotyping infrastructure combines the application of non-invasive sensor technologies for quantitative measurement of plant traits under various scenarios in controlled growth chambers, semi-controlled greenhouses, under field conditions, complemented by a modeling platform and a relevant e-infrastructure. Specifically, we would address and discuss the needs for the horticultural application for basic science and practical application.



1982 – 1988  Studies Biology (University Bayreuth)

1988 – 1991  Ph.D. (Effect of soil drought on xylem and phloem transport in Ricinuscommunisand its importance for root-shoot interaction; University Bayreuth (Prof. Ernst-Detlev Schulze)

1991 – 2001  Group leader – Institute for Botany University Heidelberg (Prof. Mark Stitt)

2000 Habilitation – Botany (University Heidelberg)

2001 – present  Forschungszentrum Jülich Institute Director

2004 – 2011  Member of Executive Board of European Plant Science Organization (EPSO)

2006 – 2008  Research Director for Earth and Environment, Forschungszentrum Jülich

2006 – present  Member of Executive Board – European Technology Platform Plants for the Future

2008 – 2011  Vice President EPSO

2010 – present  Chairman of the Bioeconomy Science Centers (BioSC)

2012 – present   Coordinator - European Plant Phenotyping Network (EPPN)

2012 – present  Member Science Advisory Board - German Association for Private Plant Breeding/ GFPi

2012 – present   CEO - QS Science Fund - Fruits, Vegetables and Potato

2012 – present   Member of the Center of Excellence in Plant Sciences - CEPLAS

2012 – present   Coordinator of the German Plant Phenotyping Network (DPPN)

2013 – present  Program speaker for the Helmholtz Program Key Technologies for the Bioeconomy

2015 – 2017  Chairman of European Technology Platform Plant for the Future

2015 – present  Chairman of the International Plant Phenotyping Network (IPPN e.V.)

2016 - present  Chairman of the ESFRI-project EMPHASIS European Infrastructure for Plant Phenotyping

2018 ff  Member of the Excellence Cluster CEPLAS – Cluster for Plant Sciences

2018 ff  Member of the Board of the Excellence Cluster PhenoRob – Robotics and Machine Learning for Plant Phenotyping and Precision Agriculture

2018 ff  Member of the Commission for Biological Safety (appointed by the Federal Minister of Agriculture)

2018 ff  Member of the EPSO board and vice-president of EPSO