Florian Cueni

Nachhaltige Landnutzung

Research Interests

  • Stable Isotopes
  • Physiological plant ecology
  • Geographical Origin Testing
  • Spatial Modeling
  • Climate change  


My project is part of the European Industrial Doctoral Program (PlantHUB) under the administration of the Zurich-Basel Plant Science Center (PSC). The goal of this Marie Sklodowska-Curie funded program is to boost technology transfer and responsible research and innovation in plant sciences. Consumers are paying increasing attention to the geographic origin of agricultural products. The abundance of stable oxygen isotopes (18O) in precipitation shows a longitudinal and latitudinal dependent natural variation, which is imprinted in plant material. This natural variability of stable oxygen isotopes in plants can therefore form the scientific basis for a tool that allows identifying the origin of plant products. During my PhD I will develop a new dynamic spatial isotope model that combines already developed models for oxygen isotope composition of precipitation with plant enabled isotope models. The goal is to develop a new approach allowing probability estimates of the geographical origin of plant derived organic material with increased precision and improved general applicability.

50% of my time as a PhD Student I am spending in Jülich, Germany, where my industry-partner Agroisolab GmbH is located. The other 50% I will work at the University of Basel in Switzerland.


2/2017 - ongoing: PhD Student at the Sustainable Land Use group, University of Basel, Switzerland and the Agroisolab GmbH in Jülich, Germany Thesis: "A new dynamic isotope model to trace the geographical origin of agricultural products"
9/2014 - 9/2016: Master at the Sustainable Land Use group, University of Basel, Switzerland Master Thesis: "The influence of seasonal drought on the ecohydrological performance of the two common Swiss grassland species Dactylis glomerata L. and Lolium perenne L."
9/2010 - 12/2013: B.Sc. in Biology, Major in Plant and Animal Sciences at the University of Basel, Switzerland