Christina Kaiser

© Han-Fei Allen Tsao

In the coming five years, ecologist Christina Kaiser will examine the complex system of soils. Through the continuous decomposition of organic matter, microorganisms are of central importance in the world’s carbon and nitrogen cycle. In addition, they contribute to the long-term carbon sequestration in soils, as well as to the availability of nutrients for plant growth. The ERC project investigates the soil microbial ecosystem from the perspective of a science of complex systems. It aims at understanding how interactions between microorganisms at microscopically small scale can lead to the self-organisation of decomposition processes in soils, and how this is relevant to the response of soil to climate change.