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BSc-MSc Thesis and Internship Projects, Wageningen University

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Agro-ecological farms: do they stimulate soil biodiversity & functioning?
Introduction: Agro-ecological farming practices are gaining increasing interest in the Netherlands and Europe. Different networks like ‘Toekomstboeren’, Biological Dynamic Farms, Food Forests, Permaculture, and Community Suppo ...
Supervisor: Ron de Goede (SBL), Gabriel Moinet (SBL), Jan Hassink (Wageningen Plant Research)
Department: Soil Biology
 
Effect of viruses on soil biogeochemical functions
Soil microorganisms play key roles in carbon cycling, plant nutrition, and greenhouse gas production (N2O and CH4). Viruses, by increasing microbial death rates, could strongly affect these processes. Viruses that infect bacteria  ...
Supervisor: Kyle Mason-Jones
Department: Soil Biology
 
Earthworm-induced self-organizing landscape patterns – a unique discovery
Introduction: Self-organizing patterns really appeal to our imagination. Intriguing examples are tiger- and leopard-bush patterns in African savannah landscapes or circular shapes in tundra peatbog ecosystems. These patterns are ...
Supervisor: Dr. Ron de Goede
Department: Soil Biology
 
Effects of fertilizer amendments and earthworm abundance on N2O and CO2 emissions from peat soils
Peat meadow soils in The Netherlands are of interest to different parties for divergent reasons. Livestock farmers benefit from relatively low groundwater tables, which make the soil stable enough grazing and equipment access. On  ...
Supervisor: Erne Blondeau, Jan Willem van Groenigen
Department: Soil Biology
 
How do moisture conditions affect the biological processes involved in peat decomposition?
It is well known that drainage of peat soils leads to decomposition of the organic matter in these carbon rich soils. This problem is increasingly being recognized recently, as is apparent from the goal in the Dutch climate agreem ...
Supervisor: Erne Blondeau, Jan Willem van Groenigen
Department: Soil Biology
 
Biological soil quality indicators for agricultural management and environmental impact
Soil quality indicators are important tools for assessing the state of agricultural soils as affected by management practices (e.g. tillage, farming system) or environmental impact (e.g. climate change ). The knowledge generated b ...
Supervisor: Giulia Bongiorno, Else B�nemann (FIBL, Research institute of organic agriculture)
Department: Soil Biology
 
Weed diversity for enhanced crop productivity and ecosystem services: harnessing positive belowground interactions
Weeds have traditionally been viewed as the “bad guys” in arable systems. Yet, weed diversity provides many ecosystem services and promotes biodiversity. As a consequence of intensive farming practices and herbicide use, weed  ...
Supervisor: Marie Zwetsloot, potential collaboration with Merel Hofmeijer and Laura Riggi (Farming Systems Ecology)
Department: Soil Biology
 
Influence arable soil management on quality Soil Organic Carbon
50% of the terrestrial C pool is stored in soils in the form of soil organic carbon (SOC). SOC drives multiple functions that are essential for arable farming, such as nutrient mineralization and - retention, carbon sequestration  ...
Supervisor: Guusje Koorneef and/or Ron de Goede and/or Mirjam Pulleman
Department: Soil Biology
 
Going back to the roots: the effect of novel fertilizers on soil biogeochemical cycling at the root-soil-microbe interface in diverse grasslands.
One of the key challenges for agricultural systems is to use fertilizers more efficiently, which includes recycling waste into novel fertilizers and increasing the circularity of nitrogen use in the plant-soil system. When investi ...
Supervisor: Alix Vidal, Marie Zwetsloot
Department: Soil Biology
 
Biological soil quality as affected by novel fertilizers input in diverse grassland systems
One of the key challenges for agricultural systems is to use fertilizers more efficiently, which includes recycling waste into novel fertilizers and increasing the circularity of nitrogen use in the plant-soil system. When investi ...
Supervisor: Giulia Bongiorno
Department: Soil Biology
 
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