Stories from the lab, stories from the field: advancing tropical crop biotechnology.

– Hervé Vanderschuren –


Prof. Hervé Vanderschuren holds a BSc in Agricultural Sciences from the University of Liège (Belgium) and two MSc, one in Plant Genetics and Breeding from AgroParisTech (France) and one in Crop Protection from the University of Liège. He obtained his PhD in Plant Biotechnology from ETH Zurich (Switzerland).
Prof. Vanderschuren has led a research team focusing on crop biotechnology at ETH Zurich and was appointed as Professor of Plant Genetics at University of Liège (Gembloux Agro BioTech, Belgium) in 2014. Over the last 12 years, his research activities have been focused on the study of crop responses to biotic and abiotic stresses as well as on the implementation of tools to improve root and tuber crops (i.e. potato, cassava, chicory) and rice. Several cassava and rice accessions with increased disease resistance, improved nutritional quality and prolonged shelf life traits have been developed by his team.
He has led and participated in over 15 research projects in collaboration with several international institutions including CAS Shanghai, UC Berkeley, Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, University of Bath, UC Los Angeles, University of Geneva and University of Basel, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), University of Witwatersrand. His team also has a large network of collaboration in tropical and sub-tropical regions, including Nigeria (NRCRI and IITA Ibadan), India (CTCRI and TNAU), Tanzania (MARI and IITA Das es Salaam), Kenya (MMUST, KALRO and IITA Nairobi), Brazil (Federal University of Fortaleza), Rwanda (RAB and UR), Colombia (Universidad de Los Andes and CIAT), Indonesia (LIPI).

2007 ETH Doctor of Sciences (Plant Biotechnology). Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (Switzerland)
2002 Master degree Bioengineering – Plant Genetics and Breeding. AgroParisTech (Paris, France).
2002 Master degree in Bioengineering and Agricultural Sciences – Crop Protection. University of Liège (Belgium).
1998 Bachelor degree (Agricultural and Biological Sciences). University of Liège (Belgium).

2017 – Invited Professor, Faculty of Bioengineering (University of Louvain (UCL), Belgium).
2014 – Professor of Plant Genetics, University of Liège – Gembloux AgroBio Tech (Belgium).
2010 – 2016 Senior Scientist, Oberassistent. Plant Biotechnology Lab at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich, Switzerland).
2007 – 2009 Research Team Leader in the Plant Biotechnology Lab at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich, Switzerland).
2003 – 2007 PhD student in the Plant Biotechnology Lab at Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (Zurich, Switzerland). Theme: Engineering RNA-mediated resistance to African Cassava Mosaic Virus in cassava.

Swiss Forum for International Agricultural Research (SFIAR) 2011 Award for “Technology transfer and capacity building: Making tropical crop technologies available where it can have an impact”.

Lecturer at ETH Zürich (2008 – 2015): Applied Plant Biotechnology (551-0360-00 G, BAC3, 6 ECTS).
Professor at University of Liège Gembloux Agro BioTech (2014 – ): Genetics (BIOL-2016-3, BAC3, 3 ECTS), Plant Breeding (VEGE0026-1, MASTER2, 4,5 ECTS), Plant Immunity (BAC3, CHIM0715-1, 1 ECTS), Plant Biotechnology (VEGE0032, MASTER2, 3 ECTS)
Professor at University of Louvain (2017 – ): Applied Plant Biotechnology (LBIRA2102, BAC2, 2 ECTS)