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ISMC News 17 Dec


Webinar and Working Group: Soil Structure as Biological Habitat

17 January 2022, 14:30-17:00 GMT

Register HERE
Soil structure as biological habitat is one of the themes of this ISMC Working Group, and will form the topic of our first webinar.  We hope to attract a broad range of researchers, extending the reach of the ISMC to soil microbiologists and ecologists.
Soil structure forms the habitat of soil organisms and, thus, it is an obvious assumption that soil structure forms variably connected pore spaces and separated niches (i.e. habitats) that are of critical importance for the diversity of soil biota. This affects not only the genetic diversity of individual species, but more importantly the functional diversity within biological communities. Soil biology may also drive soil structure, possibly building favourable properties. The quantitative description of these interactions is weak, but a huge potential exists to learn more by exploiting new technologies and modelling.
Hans-Jörg Vogel, Umweltforschungszentrum Leipzig
Paul Hallett, University of Aberdeen
Jim Prosser, University of Aberdeen
Tiina Roose, University of Southampton
Steffen Schlüter, Umweltforschungszentrum Leipzig
Darian Smercina, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

14:30 GMT – Hans-Jörg Vogel and Paul Hallett – Introduction to the Working Group on Biophysics and Soil Structure
14:50 GMT – Jim Prosser, University of Aberdeen – The importance of spatial structure in soil microbial community composition, niche specialisation and interactions.
15:15 GMT – Tiina Roose, University of Southampton – Pore scale modelling of microbial habitats and processes
15:40 GMT – Steffen Schlüter, UFZ – Soil structure impacts on nematode populations and microbial processes
16:05 GMT – Darian Smercina, PNNL­ – Relating microbial-scale soil processes to global ecosystem function
16:30 GMT – Open Discussion

Working Group Flyer 


Summer School 2022 Modeling Water Transport in the Soil-Plant System

The 1st International Summer school on advanced soil physics “Modeling Water Transport in the Soil-Plant System'' will be held at UCLouvain, Belgium, from 22nd to 26th August 2022. This one-week intensive summer school aims at offering participants an overview of physical and biological principles, theory and modelling approaches of the soil-plant hydraulics. A combination of theory and practical sessions will provide participants with the bases to understand and simulate soil-plant water transport. The main topics of the summer school are

  • Understanding and determining root and soil hydraulic properties.
  • Modeling root water uptake: processes, principles and applications.
  • Overview of current hydraulic and simplified modelling approaches (R-SWMSMECHACPLANTBOXMARSHAL, ...) for root water uptake and transpiration flux.

Main Contacts:
Mathieu Javaux mathieu.javaux @
Ali Mehmandoostkotlar soilplantmodeling-school @
Call for Presentations: Digital Technologies for Sustainable Crop Production
We share the attached Call for Presentations for the DIGICROP2022! The updated CfP includes the keynote presenters:

•    Ranveer Chandra (Microsoft Research)
•    Jürgen Gall (University of Bonn – Computer Vision)
•    Anne-Katrin Mahlein (Institute of Sugarbeet Research – Crop Science)
•    James Schnable (University of Nebraska-Lincoln – Computational Biology)
•    Gail Taylor (University of California, Davis – Environmental Plant Sciences)
•    Harry Vereecken (Forschungszentrum Jülich – Soil Science and Agrosphere)
•    Stavros Vougioukas (University of California, Davis – Biological and Agricultural Engineering)

The International Conference on Digital Technologies for Sustainable Crop Production (DIGICROP) will take place as a remote event on March 28-30, 2022. With the CfP, we are seeking qualified presenters that engage the scientific audience on the topic of “Digital Technologies for Sustainable Crop Production”. Presentations by industry experts are also highly welcome.

DIGICROP 2022 is jointly hosted and organized by the German Cluster of Excellence “PhenoRob – Robotics and Phenotyping for Sustainable Crop Production” at the University of Bonn and the AI Institute for Next Generation Food Systems (AIFS).

For further information please visit our conference website:   

Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us via!    

Kind regards,
The DIGICROP2022 Team

Important Dates:
•           January 5: Submission deadline for a 6-7 min video
•           January 31: Notification
•           March 28-30: Main event with live streams and Q&A sessions, in the daytime CET

Conference Flyer here

Seasons Greetings

The International Soil Modeling Consortium
Wishes you and your beloved ones a
Wonderful end of the year and a
Good start into the new 2022!
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