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Libère Nkurunziza

Libére Nkurunziza


L. Nkurunziza is a researcher with interests on farming and food systems. Nkurunziza's research emphasizes the evaluation and improvement of sustainable agricultural production systems to meet the socio-ecological requirements.


The teaching experience comes from his involvment in courses including i) 2008-2010: Weed science at the University of Copenhagen, ii) 2012-2014: Biology and agricultural plant production, SLU and iii)  2017- today: Agricultural cropping systems, SLU (Course leader in 2017).


We produce knowledge around the interactions of the crop genotype-management-environment. Currently, we seek the understanding of crop nutrient management and water productivity under a range of management strategies, socio-economic conditions and climate variability. The development of climate smart agriculture and its financial mechanisms are becoming of high interest in a near future.

Ongoing projects:

1. Effects of extreme weather on Swedish varieties (Sweden), Funded by Future Food

2. Transformational climate-smart options for sustainable agriculture and resilience on smallholder farms in areas with coarse-textured soils (Zimbabwe), Funded by The Swedish Research Council (VR)

3. Solution for increasing farm system resilience and carbon sinks on sandy soils(Kenya), Funded by The Nordic Climate Facility (Nordic Development Bank)

3. Effects of land use change on multifunctionality in agroecosystems (Sweden), Funded by FORMAS

4. Food security, nutrition and resilience (Burundi), Funded by The European Union

Completed projects:

1. The effects of cropping systems including preceding crop, tillage systems and fungicide application, on performance of Winter wheat (Sweden)

2. Winter wheat overwintering: Risk analysis of winter wheat domage due to forst (Sweden)

3. Extreme weather in crop production: the evaluation of economical consequences and strategies to minimize the effects (Sweden)

4. Modeling the effects of genotype-environment interations on maize cultivars under climate variability (Sweden)

5. AgResource: resource Allocation processes in Agriculture (Sweden)

6. Effective control of weeds in organic cropping- novel technology and new management strategies (Denmark)

7. Integrated Pest Management in tropical fruits trees (Burundi)



Nkurunziza L. is in collaboration with the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), Michigan State University (MSU), University of Bindura (Zimbabwe), Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT, Kenya) and is involved in The European Institutions for Agricultural Research and Education for Development (Agrinatura).


Libère Nkurunziza is agronomist (Ingénieur agronome from University of Burundi, 1999), a holder of a MSc in Applied Biology (University of Linköping, 2006) and a PhD holder (University of Copenhagen, 2010). His professional experience includes teaching, research and consultancy in Burundi, Sweden,Denmark, Zimbabwe and Kenya.


PhD student: Sandra Makaita Madamombe (co-supervisor)

Selected publications

1. Nkurunziza L., Watson CA., Öborn I., Smith GH., Bergkvist G. and Bengtsson J. (2020) Socio-ecological factors determine crop performance in agricultural systems. Scientific Reports 10: 4232.

2. Nkurunziza L, Chirinda N, Lana M, Sommer R, Karanja S, Rao I, Sanchez MR, Quintero M, Kuyah S, Lewu F, Joel A, Nyamadzawo G and Smucker A (2019) The Potential Benefits and Trade-Offs of Using Sub-surface Water Retention Technology on Coarse-Textured Soils: Impacts of Water and Nutrient Saving on Maize Production and Soil Carbon Sequestration. Front. Sustain. Food Syst. 3:71. doi: 10.3389/fsufs.2019.00071

3. Bergjord-Olsen AK., Persson T., de Wit A., Nkurunziza L., Sindhöj E. and Eckersten H. (2018) Estimating winter survival of winter wheat by simulations of plant frost tolerance. Journal of Agronomy and Crop Science. Vol. 204, 62-73

4. Nkurunziza L., Chongtham IR, Watson CA., Marstorp H., Öborn I., Bergkvist G. and J. Bengtsson (2017) Understanding effects of multiple farm management practices on barley performance. European Journal of Agronomy 90, 43-52

5.  Nkurunziza, L., Chirinda, N., Romero, M.Q.M., Rao, I., Prager, S., Sommer, R., Kuyak, S., Lewu, F., Joel, A., Escobar, G., Naramabuye, F.X., Mulidzi, R., Julio Duarte Pérez, J.D. and, A. Smucker (2017). A new technology for optimizing plant available water and nutrients in root zones of permeable soils. Agricultural Sciences for Development conference, Uppsala, 20-21 September 2017

6. Persson T., Bergjord Olsen AK, Nkurunziza L., Sindhöj E. and Eckersten H. (2016) Estimation of Crown Temperature of Winter Wheat and the Effect on Simulation of Frost Tolerance. Journal of Agronomy and Crop Science 203, 161-176

7. Vico G., Manzoni S., Nkurunziza L., Murphy K., Weih M. (2016) Tradeoffs between seed output and life span- A quantitative comparison of traits between annual and perennial congeneric species. New phytologist 209, 104-114

8. Nkurunziza L., de Toro A.; von Rosen D. & Eckersten H. (2015) Effects of extreme weather on yields of major cereal crops in Sweden: Analysis of long-term experiment data. Aspects of Applied Biology 128, 165-172

9. Nkurunziza L., Marstorp H., Chongtham IR.; Thored K.; Öborn I.; Bergkvist G. & Bengtsson J. (2015) Projections to Latent Structures (PLS) to evaluate farming system effects on agro-ecosystem services: Changes after transition from conventional to organic farming system. 5thInternational Symposium for farmings System design, 7-10 September, 2015, Montpellier, France

10. Bergjord AK.; Persson T.; Sindhöj E.; Nkurunziza L.; Eckersten H. (2015) Estimating winter survival of winter wheat by simulations of plant frost tolerance.  Agriculture and climate change: Adapting crops to increased uncertainty. 15-17 February, 2015, Amsterdam, Netherlands

11. Eckersten H., Djurle A., Albihn A., Andersson L., Båge R., de Toro A., Gärdenäs A.I.,      Hultgren J., Kvarnheden A., Lewan E., Nkurunziza L., Rosén K., Spörndly R., Vågsholm I., von Rosen D., Yuen J., Magnusson U.(2015)  Future risks and threats  against Swedish cereal and milk production; an analysis of need of research for risk as assessment (In Swedish; Framtida risker och hot mot svensk spannmåls- respektive mjölk produktion;  en analys av forskningsbehov för att bedöma risker) 156 pp.  Especially in Chapter A.3.4. Extreme summer weather- Cereals by Djurle A., de Toro A., Lewan A., Nkurunziza L., von Rosen D., and Eckersten H. pp. 107-123.

12. de Toro A., Eckersten H, Nkurunziza L., von Rosen D. (2015). Effects of extreme weather on yield of major arable crops in Sweden (In Reports series of the Department of Energy and Technology, Nr 086, 301 pp

13. Nkurunziza L., Halling M., Weih M. & H. Eckersten (2014) Can data series from variety testing be used to predict yields in leys? International Journal of AgriScience 4, 486-489

14.  Nkurunziza L & Bergkvist G (2014) Effects of crop rotations and preceding crop on winter wheat. ( In Swedish: Växtföljds- och förfruktseffekter på höstvete. In Elmquist & Arvidsson J. (Eds.) Höstvete mot nya höjder), Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet. Rapporter från jordbearbetningen i samarbete med Odling i Balans, Rapport nr 129. 103-113

15. Nkurunziza L., Kornher A., Hetta M., Halling M., Weih M. & H. Eckersten (2014) Crop genotype-environment modelling to evaluate forage maize cultivars under climate variability. Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica, Section B – Soil & Plant Science 64, 56-70

16. Nkurunziza L; Kornher A; Halling M; Weih M and Eckersten H (2013) Simulation of cultivar performances in forage maize quality and yield in future climate. In Höglind, M; Eckersten, H; Thorvaldsson, G and Niemelänen, O (Eds) Nordic Forage Model Applications- Predicting forage yield and quality in a variable and changing climate, NJF Report no 9 (1). 7 - 8.

17. Nkurunziza L; Kornher A; Halling M; Weih M and Eckersten H (2012) Model-based cultivar testing with genotype parameters and weather conditions. 12th Congress of the European Society of Agronomy, Finland, 99-100

18. Nkurunziza L. (2011) Reduction of agricultural fossil energy use with ecosystem services from plants (in Swedish: Ökat oberoende av jordbruks fossil energi med hjälp av växter), Lantbrukarnas Riksförbund (LRF), Stockholm. Rapport. 33 pp.

19. Nkurunziza L. & Streibig JC (2011) Carbohydrate dynamics during early growth of perenial weeds, Cirsium arvense (L.) Scop. and Tussilago farfara L. Weed Research 51,461-468

20. Nkurunziza L, Rosenqvist E & Streibig JC (2010) Photosynthesis and growth of newly established shoots of Cirsium arvense (L.) Scop. and Tussilago farfara L. are resource independent. Weed Research 51, 33- 40

21. Nkurunziza L & Milberg P (2007) Repeated grading of weed abundance and multivariate methods to improve efficacy in on-farm weed control trials. Weed Biology and Management 7, 132-139.


Researcher at the Department of Crop Production Ecology; Agricultural cropping systems
Telephone: +4618672418
Postal address:
Inst för växtproduktionsekologi, Box 7043
Visiting address: Ulls väg 16, Uppsala