PhD Course - Carbon cycling: from molecular to global processes, 3 (+1.5 Optional) ECTS

The aim of the course is to give participants a deep understanding of the chemical, physical, and biological characteristics and processes influencing carbon dynamics in ecosystems. We will highlight processes at the molecular level and move towards larger scales, ending at global cycling. Both terrestrial and aquatic systems will be in focus.

Course homepage

Target group

This course is primarily intended for PhD students in the Focus on Soils and Water graduate school and PhD students at Uppsala University, but it is also open to other PhD students working in related fields. Other researchers are also very welcome to participate in discussions whenever seats are available.


Time: 2015-09-30 - 2015-11-13
Location: Uppsala
Organiser: FoSW
Last signup date: 15 September 2015
Additional info:

Updated course scedule will be found at the course homepage shortly.

Course Content

The course consists of 2 mandatory parts + 1 optional part:

1)    Individual literature studies during 30th September – 22nd October, where selected papers will be discussed during five group meetings. The course literature consists of research and review papers selected by the organizers and invited lecturers.

2)    A workshop at Sunnersta Herrgård (Uppsala) the week 2nd – 6th November, based around lectures by leading researchers in the field, as well as student poster presentations.

Both the literature seminars and the workshop will be structured in 5 main blocks:

  • Chemistry: Characterization of organic matter. Hydrolysis, oxidation, and humification processes.
  • Physics: Sorption and spatial distribution of organic matter.
  • Biology: Fungal and bacterial decomposers in terrestrial and aquatic systems.
  • Ecosystem level: Regulation of carbon cycling at the ecosystem. Terrestrial-riparian-aquatic interfaces and carbon balance at the regional scale.
  • Global perspective: Global carbon cycling. Land use change impacts and model uncertainty.

3)    An additional optional week (9th – 13th November) of modelling exercises led by Thomas Kätterer (SLU). The emphasis will be on modelling of carbon cycling in ecosystems with special focus on life cycle analysis.

Dates and location

The five literature discussion meetings will take place during the period 30th September – 22nd October at the SLU campus in Uppsala. Alternatively, students that are not able to attend some or any of the literature seminars (e.g. students based outside the Uppsala-Stockholm area) will be asked to present a written summary of the papers based on local group discussions. Ideally, this will be done in groups of students based in the same university area. Participation via Skype or similar will also be possible.

The workshop will take place 2nd – 6th November at Sunnersta Herrgård (Uppsala).

The modelling week will also take place at the SLU campus in Uppsala during 9th – 13th November.