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William Lidberg

William Lidberg
Leads an interdisciplinary research group that looks at opportunities and challenges with artificial intelligence in Sweden's forests. Proud creator of SLU soil moisture map and SLU ditch map.


The theme of my research is to make it easier to plan infrastructure and forest management. Problems such as undersized road culverts and driving damage in forestry and deficient protection zones can be avoided if you know in advance where in the landscape the water is, and how it moves in the ground. The combination of my interests in geographic information systems, computer skills, and access to all of Sweden's maps gives me enormous opportunities to be creative and test new methods on a large scale.


Teaching in soil science and quaternary geology as well as analysis of environmental data part 2.


One of the biggest issues with water quality in Sweden is that no one knows where it is. Small streams are missing from our maps which makes it difficult to plan any kind of activities around them. This is especially problematic in forestry where heavy machines operate near wet and sensitive soils. My research uses high resolution digital elevation models to model shallow groundwater flow paths and small streams. The outcome is a detailed wet area map that can be used to plan forestry operations. Buffer zones and driving can be planned in order to minimize damage and rutting to sensitive soils.


I studied geoecology at Umeo University and did my Ph.D in soil science at SLU.


Main supervisor of one ph.d student and co-supervisor of four ph.d students.

Selected publications


Lidberg, W., Nilsson, M. & Ågren, A. Using machine learning to generate high-resolution wet area maps for planning forest management: A study in a boreal forest landscape. Ambio (2019) doi:10.1007/s13280-019-01196-9

E Myrstener, H Biester, C Bigler, W Lidberg, C Meyer-Jacob, J Rydberg, R Bindler. Environmental footprint of small-scale, historical mining and metallurgy in the Swedish boreal forest landscape: The Moshyttan blast furnace as microcosm. The Holocene. Volym 29. pages 578-591. doi:

G Rocher‐Ros Ryan A. Sponseller, W Lidberg , C Mörth, R Giesler. Landscape process domains drive patterns of CO2 evasion from river networks. DOI:


MKlaus D A. Seekell W Lidberg J Karlsson. Evaluations of Climate and Land Management Effects on Lake Carbon Cycling Need to Account for Temporal Variability in CO2 Concentrations. DOI:


Leach J, Lidberg W, Kuglerová L, Kuglerova L, Peralta Tapia A, Ågren A & Laudon H (2017).  Evaluating topography-based predictions of shallow lateral groundwater discharge zones for a boreal lake-stream system  Water Resources Research, 53 (7),  pp.5420-5437. DOI:10.1002/2016WR019804

Lidberg W, Lundmark T, Nilsson M & Ågren A (2017).  Evaluating preprocessing methods of digital elevation models for hydrological modelling  Hydrological Processes, 31 (26),  pp.4660-4668. DOI:10.1002/hyp.11385

Tiwari T, Lidman F, Laudon H, Lidberg W & Ågren A (2017).  GIS-based prediction of stream chemistry using landscape composition, wet areas, and hydrological flow pathways  Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences, 122 (1),  pp.65-79. DOI:10.1002/2016JG003399


Myrstener E, Lidberg W, Segerström U, Biester H, Damell D & Bindler R (2016).  Was Moshyttan the earliest iron blast furnace in Sweden? The sediment record as an archeological toolbox  Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 5 pp.35-44. DOI:10.1016/j.jasrep.2015.10.040


Ågren A, Lidberg W & Ring E (2015).  Mapping Temporal Dynamics in a Forest Stream Network-Implications for Riparian Forest Management Forests, 6 (9),  pp.2982-3001. DOI:10.3390/f6092982


Ågren A, Lidberg W, Strömgren M, Ogilvie J & Arp P (2014). Evaluating digital terrain indices for soil wetness mapping - a Swedish case study  Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 18 (9),  pp.3623-3634. DOI:10.5194/hess-18-3623-2014




Associate Senior Lecturer at the Department of Forest Ecology and Management; Department of Forest Ecology and Management, joint staff
Telephone: +46907868655, +46706295567
Postal address:
Skogens ekologi och skötsel
901 83 Umeå
Visiting address: Skogsmarksgränd 17, Umeå

Publications list: