Research • Educate • Connect
Towards a sustainable bioeconomy

Research • Educate • Connect
Towards a sustainable bioeconomy

27th BioSC Lecture (online)

Prof. Dr. Philip Shapira, University of Manchester/Georgia Institute of Technology

Innovation intermediaries in the new bioeconomy:
Biofoundries and the integration of translation, sustainability, and responsibility

November 30, 2022 | 10:00 pm
Photo: Private

The emergence of engineering biology, and its potential to address sustainable bioeconomy development, is associated with the rise of biofoundries. These are facilities that employ advanced automation and computational analytics to accelerate engineering biology applications. Yet, for biofoundries to fully achieve their promise as innovative bioeconomy intermediaries, they need to meet three key challenges of translation, sustainability, and responsibility. The roles currently undertaken by existing biofoundries in addressing these challenges are explored, with comparison to the roles undertaken by other contrasting types of bioeconomy innovation intermediaries: bio-incubators, bio scale-up facilities, and public science facilities. This assessment draws on web-content analysis (28 organizations across 12 countries) and validation interviews. Findings from this comparison are reported, with recommendations offered that could enhance the broader contributions of biofoundries to sustainable bioeconomies.

Philip Shapira is Professor of Innovation Management and Policy with the Manchester Institute for Innovation Research at the Alliance Manchester Business School, University of Manchester, UK, and a Professor of Public Policy at Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, USA. He teaches and conducts research on science and innovation policy and management, emerging technologies and governance, regional innovation, and policy evaluation, and is a Management Board Member and Lead for Responsible Innovation with the UK Future Biomanufacturing Research Hub.

More information:


Please register by 28 November via the following link:

The video conference link will be sent to registered participants on 29 November.



MicrobiomeSupport: Towards coordinated microbiome R&I activities in the food system to support (EU and) international bioeconomy goals

March 23, 2022 | 10:00 h | virtual

Dr. Tanja Kostic, Senior Research Engineer, Competence Unit Bioresources
AIT Austrian Insitute of Technology Gmbh

 Tanja Kostic

Photo: Private


Microbiomes have crucial roles in maintaining life on Earth, and their functions drive human, animal, plant and environmental health. The microbiome research landscape is developing rapidly and is performed in many different science fields using similar concepts but mostly one (eco)system at-a-time. Thus, we are only starting to unravel and understand the interconnectedness of microbiomes across the (eco)systems.

MicrobiomeSupport is an EU Coordination and Support Action, funded from November 2018 to October 2022. Its overall objective has been to analyse opportunities and barriers related to the microbiome R&I activities in the food system. The vision is to see microbiome products and applications in use that support the transition to a future-proof food system in line with Food2030 priorities. To achieve this, MicrobiomeSupport established an international network of experts and stakeholders in the microbiome food systems research field, uniting 27 partners from the EU, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, India, South Africa, and two associated partners from New Zealand and USA. MicrobiomeSupport partners act as national ambassadors ensuring continuous exchange between the project and national stakeholders. In addition, MicrobiomeSupport integrates numerous experts representing different stakeholder groups, i.e. the scientific community, industry, funding organisations and the policy sector.

Key outcomes include

- database containing information on microbiome activities, programmes and facilities along the food chain and beyond in the EU and worldwide

- recommendations for an internationally agreed microbiome definition, best practices and standards, as well as consistent protocols in research

- establishment of a dialogue between multiple stakeholders (i.e. representatives from science, industry, policy, funding and regulatory bodies)

- publications showcasing microbiomes potential and current hurdles for their full exploitation

- educational materials for the general public

Detailed information on the project and link to resources can found at or @MicrobiomeEU.


MicrobiomeSupport: Towards coordinated microbiome R&I activities in the food system to support (EU and) international bioeconomy goals

1st October 2021, 10:05 h

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Prof. Dr. Daniela Thrän, Helmholtz-Zentrum für Umweltforschung - UFZ, Leipzig

 25. BioSC Lecture

The 25th BioSC Lecture took place as part of the Jülich Biotec Day 2021. Prof. Dr. Daniela Thrän, Chair of the Bioeconomy Council of the Federal Government, highlighted the opportunities and difficulties in establishing a sustainable bioeconomy.

In her presentation "How to develop a sustainable bioeconomy," Prof. Thrän first reminded the audience of the concept of planetary boundaries. Mankind has always used biological processes such as photosynthesis, growth, conversion and decomposition of biomass, and has also developed these processes further - initially in breeding, and later in biotechnology and process engineering, for example. However, the natural basis for this is limited, first and foremost the land. Most of the land available for biomass production is already being used today, so establishing a bioeconomy must be about improving biomass use, such as increasing efficiency, rather than expanding it. For example, the energy content of biomass produced today annually is an estimated 200 exaJoules, but about 75% of that is lost during processing. Prof. Thrän named three central approaches: 1. stabilization of the demand for biomass, 2. sustainable production and 3. sustainable use.

With regard to stabilizing the demand for biomass, Prof. Thrän pointed out that it will not be possible to completely replace fossil resources with biomass. Especially for the areas of mobility, electricity and heat supply, it is essential to expand the use of other renewable resources such as wind and solar energy, she said. She also mentioned the use of residual flows from agriculture, forestry and food production, as well as a reduction in meat consumption, as other important elements for stabilizing demand.

In order to ensure the sustainable production of biomass, certification plays a decisive role, according to Prof. Thrän - from cultivation to transport, processing and conversion into products. In view of the large number of existing certifications, an important task for the next years will be to standardize the requirements and criteria, at least in outline, as has been achieved for the European biofuel market since 2009.

For a sustainable use of biomass, the principle of circular value creation with cascade use, recycling and upcycling will be of decisive importance. The bioeconomy in Germany, for example, is still very linear and the potential of residual flows is far from being exploited. A major challenge lies in the large number of laws and regulations that need to be taken into account.

As key elements for the establishment of a sustainable bioeconomy, Prof. Thrän named, among others, research and development, best practice examples, incentives and financing. She particularly emphasized the importance of regional implementation strategies that address regional specifics and network local players, citing the Rhenish mining region as an example, where the transformation from a coal-mining region to a model region for a sustainable bioeconomy is being pursued.

Genetic engineering of poplar trees for the biorefinery

17th October 2019, 13:00 h

Forschungszentrum Jülich, IBG-2, Raum 406

Prof. Dr. Wout Boerjan, Bioenergy and Bio-aromatics Group, VIB Center for Plant Systems Biology, Ghent University, Belgium

The 24th BioSC Lecture „Genetic engineering of poplar trees for the biorefinery“ on 17 October was also held at Forschungszentrum Jülich. Prof. Wout Boerjan from the University of Ghent presented work on the elucidation and targeted alteration of the biosynthetic pathway of lignin on Arabidopsis and poplars. The down-regulation of certain enzymes leads to a lower lignin content and a considerably higher sugar yield. However, field trials have shown that the plants are smaller because their water-conducting vessels are no longer stable enough and collapse. By using a promoter that is only active in the vessels, the lignin content of the vessels can be specifically normalised and the plants return to their normal size. Prof. Boerjan also presented results on changes in lignin composition, which also lead to an improved sugar yield in biomass digestion.

From Lager to Wild Yeast for Beer Production

27th September 2019, 11:30 Uhr

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Jochen Förster, Carlsberg A/S, Copenhagen, Denmark


The 23rd BioSC Lecture „From lager to wild yeast for beer production“ was held on 27 September as part of the Jülich Biotech Day. Dr. Jochen Förster from Carlsberg (Copenhagen) presented historical and current yeast breeding programmes from Carlsberg as well as current sustainability projects to reduce emissions and water consumption in beer production.

Integrated use of biomass as a platform to obtain biofuels, nanocellulose and biofertilizers

11th September 2019, 14:00 h

Forschungszentrum Jülich, IBG-2, Raum 406

Dr. Cristiane S. Farinas, Embrapa Instrumentacao, Sao Carlos, SP, Brazil


Dr. Christiane S. Farinas of the Brazilian State Agricultural Research Institute Embrapa first presented works on the enzymatic digestion of biomass. Two major problems are the adsorption of enzymes to lignin and their inhibition by phenolic compounds. Dr. Farinas\' research group has been able to minimise the former by adding soy protein, which remains after oil pressing, and the latter by adding ash from sugar cane bagasse as adsorbent. With these cost-effective processes, the sugar yield could be doubled.

The second part of the lecture dealt with nanocellulose. In recent years, the crystalline part of cellulose, which is produced during the digestion of biomass, has increasingly been used as a material for various applications, such as screens, solar panels, plastic furniture and edible packaging. Dr. Farinas presented a process for the integrated production of sugars and nanocellulose from eucalyptus.

Finally, she presented works on the improved solubilization of phosphate from phosphate rock using Aspergillus niger. A new application for fertilization is the use of a nanocomposite of starch, ground phosphate rock and A. niger, from which phosphate is released over a longer period of time. The nanocomposite can also be loaded with sulphur and mineral oxides and leads to comparable results with commercial fertilizers in plant growth. All the works shown were impressive examples of the possibilities of bioeconomy.

Cradle to cradle: upcycling bioresources for the new circular economy

11th June 2019, 10:00 h

Forschungszentrum Jülich, Raum 406

Prof. Dr. ir. Erik Meers, Faculty of Bioscience Engineering and Department of Green Chemistry & Technology, Ghent University


Prof. Dr. Erik Meers from the University of Ghent presented three European clusters working at different levels to make the transition from linear to circular value creation possible. In particular, he addressed the nitrogen cycle and the use and recovery of nitrogen in agriculture.

The BioRefine Cluster Europe, founded in 2013, networks 21 research projects working on the valorisation of residual flows from agriculture, the agro- and food industry as well as biological waste and waste water. The common goal is that residual and waste flows will no longer pollute the environment but be used as secondary resources. The cluster supports the implementation of the results in practice. Furthermore, the University of Ghent has founded the business development platform "End-of-waste" to initiate collaborations between academia and industry, as well as the scientific network INFINITY, which, for example, offers training modules for doctoral students on the subject of nutrient recycling.

Erik Meers focused in particular on the problem of the shifted global nitrogen cycle. Since the middle of the 20th century, both the use of mineral fertilizers and the combustion of fossil fuels have risen sharply. Both of these factors cause nitrate to be increasingly introduced into the soil and to accumulate through leaching in groundwater, inland waters and finally in the sea, where algae carpets are formed and oxygen deficiency results. He presented some projects from the Biorefine Cluster that address this problem. The SYSTEMIC project is developing new biorefinery systems that make it possible not only to produce biogas from liquid manure, sewage sludge and food residues, but also to recover phosphate and nitrate from the fermentation residues. In the ALG-AD project, fermentation residues from biogas plants are used as a substrate for algae that produce proteins and lipids that can be used for animal feed, for example. The Nutri2Cycle project investigates nitrogen, phosphorus and carbon fluxes and the associated environmental problems in farms throughout Europe that use various farming techniques in order to derive recommendations on how nutrient cycles can be closed more efficiently in the future.

Towards a climate effective bioeconomy – Using precision synthetic biotechnology tools for conversion of CO2 and chemically complex biomass

13th March 2019, 9:30 h

Forschungszentrum Jülich, Raum 406

Prof. Dr. Thomas Brück, Department of Chemistry and Director of the TUM Algae Tec Centre, Technical University of Munich


Prof. Dr. Thomas Brück, holder of the Werner Siemens Chair for synthetic biotechnology and director of the AlgaeTec Center at the Technical University of Munich, presented different bioprocesses for fixation, valorization and storage of CO2.

Prof. Brück began by naming urgent global challenges, especially the effects of climate change, that are already noticeable today. In his view, measures to combat climate change have been inadequate largely because economic motivation is too low. He emphasized that scientific questions must lead to economic opportunities. He therefore presented some successful examples from his research.

Many high-quality chemicals and materials are produced on the basis of lipids. Microalgae and yeasts can produce large quantities of lipids without competing with food production and without causing land-use changes, as is the case for palm oil or even rapeseed oil, for example. Prof. Brück presented a patented process in which specific yeasts are co-fermented with hydrolyzed biomass from agricultural residue flows and acetate produced from CO2 and electrolytically obtained hydrogen. As a result of this co-fermentation, yeasts can grow to a high density and produce large quantities of lipids. Water and biomass from the fermentation process are completely recycled and specialized enzymatic hydrolysis of the yeast cells allows a solvent-free lipid extraction. The price of the oil obtained in this way corresponds to the price of eco-certified palm oil and is thus competitive. In terms of life cycle analysis, the oil is within the range of plant oils.

The products to which lipids are processed range from plastics to lubricants and biodiesel up to carbon fibers. Today, the latter are mainly used in automobile production, but they are also suitable for construction elements in buildings or bridges, for example. This represents a highly effective opportunity to fight climate change, explained Prof. Brück. If lipids are produced in algae on a large scale, used in the construction sector and, after use, are ultimately stored in empty coal seams instead of burning them as it is done today, significant quantities of CO2 could be permanently withdrawn from the atmosphere. This approach is deemed globally relevant in the current world climate report and Prof. Brück received an award for this work at the UN World Climate Conference 2018 in Kattowitz.

In addition, Prof. Brück presented two other biosyntheses established in his working group. For the production of the biodegradable plastic polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) made of wheat bran, the  Dahms synthetic pathway from Pseudomonas was introduced into Ralstonia in order to make the xylose in bran available. Ralstonia produces the monomer 3-hydroxybutyric acid that is subsequently polymerized to PHB using a cell-free enzyme cascade. The biodegradable insect repellant cembratrienol can also be produced from wheat bran by a metabolically engineered E.coli strain, which creates new possibilities for plant protection. All examples demonstrated impressive possibilities for establishing a sustainable bioeconomy.

“Systems metabolic engineering for the bio-based production of chemicals”

“Innovation by evolution: Bringing new chemistry to life”

28th of September 2017, 1:30 am

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Prof. Sang Yup Lee, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), Republic of Korea

Prof. Frances H. Arnold from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), USA

19. BioSC lecture 1   19. BioSC lecture 2   19. BioSC lecture 3

19. BioSC lecture 4   19. BioSC lecture 5   19. BioSC lecture 6


On 28th September the 19th BioSC Lecture with two internationally renowned scientists took place in the frame of the Jülich Biotec Day. Prof. Sang Yup Lee, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), Republic of Korea, reported on current trends in systems metabolic engineering for the bio-based production of chemicals. Several production methods could already be established which are now applied in the sectors of health and nutrition (e.g. bacterial production of plant secondary metabolites), energy (fuel production in E. coli) as well as chemistry where recently a nylon-precursor was produced in bacteria which could only be synthesized chemically before. With the so-called „in silico genome-scale metabolic model“ multigenic bacterial strains for various products can be optimized within one week.

In the second lecture, Prof. Francis H. Arnold, California Institute of Technology (Caltech), USA, gave insight to “Innovation by evolution: Bringing new chemistry to life”. Fascinated by evolution, Prof. Arnold has been working for many years on enzyme evolution by means of protein design methods. These methods play an important role in bioeconomy where chemical synthesis pathways are supposed to be replaced by biotechnological ones in favour of the environment. As an example for the natural potential of substrate adaptation she presented the case of Atrazin. This herbicide was considered as non-degradable and it accumulated in soils until, in 1993, a fast enzymatic degradation pathway was discovered. Similarly, the bacterial degradation of plastics can be explained by evolutionary adaptation of the metabolism and its enzymes. Prof. Arnold makes use of this potential by accelerating marginal enzyme activities for desired activities or by creating, selecting and optimizing new activities. The targeted evolution of enzymes holds a manifold potential for the chemical, pharmaceutical, paper, leather and textile industry.




Inspired by nature - Development of sustainable flavour modifiers

4th of August 2017, 11:30 am

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Dr. Jakob Ley, Director for research and technology at Symrise AG, Holzminden, Germany

On 4th August 2017 the BioSC Lecture "Inspired by nature - Development of sustainable flavour modifiers" was given by Dr Jakob Ley, Director of Research and Technology at Symrise AG, at Forschungszentrum Jülich. Almost 50 interested participants listened to the talk on his interdisciplinary work on the development and modulation of aromas and flavour components. An intensive discussion on the topic took place after the lecture.

18. BioSC Lecture  18. BioSC Lecture 2  18. BioSC Lecture 3


The history of research on and with flavours started before 1900, when the first biotechnological processes were used for flavour optimization for beer brewing and bread baking. The first flavour used by industry was vanillin in the 1950s. Since then there has been a continuous and rapid development with regard to various tastes and production methods. In this way, the term "flavour" is not clearly defined for laypersons. A "flavour" does not have to be of natural origin but it could be chemically synthesized. This explains the high price differences e.g. for vanilla aromas. The price for the natural aroma from the vanilla bean is several times higher than that for the chemically synthesized flavour. Currently 250 - 300 new components for flavouring are tested per year, whereby the analyses for approval are similar to pharmaceutical tests, but are somewhat faster and cheaper. In the modern flavour industry, 60% of raw materials are made from natural substances such as plants, animals or bacteria, 30% from crude oil and 10% from other sources. Research and development on and with flavouring substances is a big market with large potential where Symrise works together with many industrial and research partners.

The lecture of Dr. Ley can be downloaded from our Intranet.


The forest- and plant-based bioeconomy – opportunities for cooperation

12th of May 2017, 1 pm

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Dr. Andreas Kleinschmit von Lengefeld, Director for research and innovation, FCBA (French Institute of Technology for forest-based and furniture sectors), Champs-sur-Marne, France

The BioSC lecture on "The forest- and plant-based bioeconomy-opportunities for cooperation" was  given on the 12th of May at Forschungszentrum Jülich by Dr. Andreas Kleinschmit von Lengefeld (French Institute of Technology for forest-based and furniture sectors), Champs-sur-Marne, France. 30 participants heard an interesting talk with an intensive discussion. The presentation will come soon at the download area at the BioSC intranet.

 Andreas Kleinschmit von Lengefeld   


 Das französische, technische Institut FCBA, und seine Rolle in der forst-basierten Bioökonomie

Die Rolle des forst-basierten Sektors in der französischen Bio-Ökonomie nimmt stetig zu. Frankreich hat die viertgrößte Waldfläche in Europa, nach Schweden, Finnland und Spanien.

Seit der Gebietsreform 2016 ist die neue Region Aquitanien die Nummer eins in Europa für Wertschöpfung im forst-basierten Sektor. Die gesamte Waldfläche der Bundesrepublik Deutschland entspricht der Laubholzfläche in französischen Wäldern (>10 Mio ha). Zur Zeit werden von der französischen Politik, welche diesen Sektor als Zukunftsweisend in die Gruppe der 16 wichtigsten Industrien Frankreichs aufnahm, Programme für Forschung und Innovationen lanciert.

Priorisierte Themen, welche von allen wichtigen Akteuren des französischen forst-basierten Sektors gemeinsam entwickelt wurden, zeigen die Zukunft auf. Das technologische Institut FCBA (Forêt, Cellulose, Construction Bois, Ameublement) ist mit seiner Vielseitigkeit im Forschungs- und Entwicklungsbereich in Europa einzigartig. Es ist der einzige Akteur, welcher bei der biotechnologischen Verbesserung der forstlichen Biomasseproduktion beginnt. Von der Nano-bis zur Makrostruktur arbeitet, sowie die Sozio-ökonomischen und Umweltaspekte in seinen Aktivitäten einbindet. Der Kern der Forschungs-, Innovationsaktivitäten beginnen bei TRL 5 bis TRL9. Die verschiedenen Forschungsthemen und Disziplinen des FCBA werden vorgestellt, sowie Möglichkeiten für eventuell gemeinsame Forschungsvorhaben eruiert.



„The role of plant breeding in bioeconomy”

15th of March 2017

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Dr. Léon Broers, member of  management at KWS SAAT SE, Einbeck and member of the German Bioeconomy Council

The BioSC Lecture „The role of plant breeding in bioeconomy” attracted many people to participate on the 15th of March at Forschungszentrum Jülich.

 16. BioSC Lecture 1   16. BioSC Lecture 2   16. BioSC Lecture 3

The demand for bio-based raw materials will significantly increase. At the same time, we are facing a range of environmental challenges like climate change accompanied with more increasingly frequent extreme weather events, and the shortage of basic resources. Plant breeding is able to address these challenges by providing varieties that have higher and stable yields, better adaptability to different growth and environmental conditions as well as reduced requirements for resources. Thus, plant breeding plays a key role in a Bioeconomy that aims to achieve efficient and resource-friendly production and use of biological resources by taking into account societal perceptions of demand.

The presentation is accessible in our intranet.

„Socioeconomic questions in the bioeconomy“

19th of December 2016

Forschungszentrum Jülich

  • The view of the Bio-Economy Council on bioeconomy and Presentation of the Center for Development Research
    Prof. Dr. Joachim von Braun, Chair of the Bio-Economy Council and Director of the Center for Development Research (ZEF), University of Bonn 
  • Research for sustainability governance in the bioeconomy
    Jun.-Prof. Jan Börner, Center for Development Research (ZEF), University of Bonn

Bio-based economic transformation is a potential pathway towards sustainable development including many of the Agenda 2030 SDG. And yet, the conditions under which a growing bioeconomy can help to achieve sustainable development goals are not well understood. This presentation discusses elements and early results of an interdisciplinary research program aimed at developing appropriate multi-scale governance frameworks for sustainable bioeconomic development. We focus on two key drivers of bioeconomic growth: (1) Policies and measures that promote or regulate the use of bio-based food, feed, fuel, and fiber; and (2) technological innovation in biomass producing and processing sectors. Quantitative empirical tools from economics, environmental geography, and biology are key to understanding how these drivers lead to positive or negative socio-economic and environmental outcomes at local scales.

„Potentiale und ökosystemare Dienstleistungen von Nachwachsenden Rohstoffen“

1st of December 2016, 4:00pm

University of Bonn

Dr. Markus Schorling, University of Hamburg, biotechnology, society and environment (FSP BIOGUM)

Dr. Schorling ist seit 2009 am Forschungsschwerpunkt Biotechnik, Gesellschaft und Umwelt (BIOGUM) der Universität Hamburg tätig. In seinen Forschungsvorhaben verbindet er die Biomasseforschung und Biotechnologie mit aktuellen gesellschaftlichen Fragestellung. Er ist bzw. war unter anderem beteiligt an Forschungsprojekten "BioEnergie 2021 - Forschung für die Nutzung von Biomasse", "Biotechnologie - Chancen nutzen und gestalten", „Potentiale der Gentechnik bei Energiepflanzen“ oder "Grundlagenforschung Energie 2020+". In seinem Vortrag wird er die möglichen Nutzungspotenziale von Nachwachsenden Rohstoffen und insbesondere deren ökosystemaren Dienstleitungen im gesellschaftlichen Kontext darstellen.

„Protein stability engineering as a workhorse for a sustainable bioeconomy”

16th of December 2016, 2:30 pm

HHU Düsseldorf

Dr. Jens Erik Nielsen, Director, HTS and Design, Novozymes A/S

The talk by Dr. Nielsen provided insights into the challenges of enzyme design for washing powder in the context of a sustainable bioeconomy. While washing at low temperatures is better for the environment, surveys showed that consumers doubt that washing at cold temperatures is efficient. Storage conditions at industry scale and for household application have to be taken into account for enzyme design.


Enzymes are among the most efficient and specific catalysts known, and are applied widely in industrial processes and household applications. However, enzymes are by nature meta-stable compounds that have to occupy an ordered folded state to be catalytically active. The successful application and competitiveness of enzymes therefore depends on the extent to which enzymes are able to maintain this folded conformation in the industrial/household application and under storage conditions. Jens Nielsen, who has 25 years of research experience in protein analysis and design, discussed different strategies for stabilizing enzymes and highlight current research at Novozymes at producing enzymes that are stable against a number of harsh conditions. 

„Food Security in the context of bioeconomy”

1st of June 2016, 4:00 pm

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Dr. Nicole Schönleber, CEO, Food Security Center, University of Hohenheim

 The seminar  provided an overview of the research and educational objectives of the Food Security Center in the context of (global) strategies on bioeconomy. Food Security is one of the major objectives of bioeconomy. The FSC mission is to provide innovative and effective scientific contributions to reduce hunger and achieve food security, contributing towards the SDG 1 and 2, especially towards the eradication of hunger and malnutrition. Achieving this mission requires careful analysis and science-supported identification of effective and efficient policy, technical and institutional responses, including impact assessment. The Food Security Center utilizes a multidisciplinary approach through teaching, conducting research and providing policy advice in cooperation with national and international development organizations and partner Higher Education Institutes in the developing world. Research topics include biomass and food availability, food access, biomass and food use, food quality and safety, giving particular concern to gender equality and sustainability of agricultural production..


“Bioeconomy: opportunities for collaboration with Costa Rica”

19th of January 2016

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Keilor Rojas, PhD, former Vice minister in the Ministry of Science, Technology and Telecommunications of Costa Rica, currently Universidad Latina de Costa Rica and Biotech Entrepreneur ( )


The seminar will provide a broad overview of the academic and research sector in Costa Rica (especially in bioeconomy) and show possibilities of interaction with national institutions in more specific fields such as biodiversity, environment, biotechnology and forestry.


27th of  November 2015
Forschungszentrum Jülich

“Bioeconomy in the Thai Context”

Dr. Sakarindr Bhumiratana, President of King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi, Bangkok

“Overview of Thai Cassava industry”

Prof. Morakot Tanticharoen, National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA), Thailand

Here you find more information about this lecture.



Dr. Sakarindr Bhumiratana is currently President of King Mongkut’s University of  Technology Thonburi (KMUTT). He was appointed the Executive Director of the  National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology in 1991, where he served for a period of ten years before returning as Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at KMUTT from 2000-2004. He was then appointed as President of the National Science
and Technology Development Agency, where he served until 2010. Dr. Sakarindr has just been recognized as Distinguished Fellow of the Petroleum Institute of Thailand, 2012. He was a recipient of the ASEAN Meritorious Service Award in 2005 and was accepted as a Fellow of the International Academy of Food
Science and Technology in 2006. He is currently a member of the National Economic and Social Development Board, the Science, Technology and Innovation Policy Agency, the National Science and Technology Development Board, as well as various other university councils.
Dr. Sakarindr has a keen interest in applying technology and innovation to improve the quality of life of rural communities and is active in many projects in this area. His research interests extend to systems biology, industrial biogas development and transport phenomena of food and biological materials. He has published extensively on both technical and policy issues affecting higher education and research.

Professor Morakot is a leading researcher in Thailand in the field of microbiology
and biotechnology. Her specialty includes research and development of an anaerobic wastewater treatment for biogas production and algal technology research, and she is also a pioneer in biosensor research in Thailand. She is also well recognized for her involvement at the regional and international level, being an active member and working on the executive of several societies and organizations, as well as serving on
the editorial board of a number of noted international journals. Morakot was BIOTEC Director from 2000 –
2008. During her directorship, she also served as Chairman of the ASEAN Sub-Committee on Biotechnology (SCB), from 2005-2008.
At present, Morakot is the chairman of NSTDA’s Agricultural and Food Cluster and the senior advisor to NSTDA President. She also serves as the Professor Emeritus at the School of Bioresources and Technology, KMUTT

„Bioeconomy in Canada“

30th Of June 2016

University of Bonn

Prof. Dr. L. Martin Cloutier, Department of Management and Technology, School of Management, University of Quebec at Montreal, Canada



The seminar presentation was splited into two parts. The first part presented a landscape overview of the bioeconomy sector in Canada. The second part reported on preliminary results of the research project conducted at the U. of Bonn on the drivers of the emerging value chains in the bioeconomy using a participatory group concept mapping, a mixed-methods approach. Early findings will indicate the main concepts at play uncovered by the group of participants, measures of consensus, highlight value-creating and feasibility ranking of identified drivers.


Prof. Dr. Martin Cloutier, is a professor in the Department of Management and Technology, School of Management, University of Quebec at Montreal (Canada). He is specializing his research program on group decision making in many contexts using mixed methods and design science research methods; including value chain coordination and modeling in the bioeconomy, and agriculture and food processing. His recent work has also included the identification of initiatives to be undertaken collectively by stakeholders to develop the distribution of health enhancing foods in Canada.



"Fermentative Produktion von enantiomeren-reinen Wirkstoffen - Paradigmenwechsel für pharmazeutische und chemische Produktionsprozesse“

16th of June 2015

University of Bonn

Dr. Peter Welters, Manager Phytowelt GreenTechnologies GmbH, Nettetal, Germany





"How to move from waste streams to value-added novel food ingredients? An assessment from a legal perspective"

9th of June 2015

University of Bonn

Dr. Markus Grube, KWG Rechtsanwälte, Gummersbach, Germany






"Advances in enzymatic processing of biomass"

14th of March 2015

RWTH Aachen

Prof. Dr. Claus Felby, Biomass and Bioenergy, Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

During the last decade the development in enzyme technology has advanced the processing of lignocellulosic biomass to fermentable C6 and C5 sugars. However, biomass is not just carbohydrate polymers, and by studying the whole system of the cell wall matrix, enzyme protein and water; new insights into the mechanisms of biomass deconstruction has been obtained.
Application of this knowledge at the large scale could preferably be implemented in existing infrastructures of agriculture and forestry. An example is the Danish +10 mio tons study which shows how existing agriculture and forestry can be adapted to a higher biomass production without compromising environmental issues or biodiversity.



Short Biography

Prof. Dr. Claus Felby graduated in Forestry and received his PhD in 1997 in Wood technology at the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University in Denmark. Since 20 years he has worked with biomass and biotechnology within both private industry and academia. Following his PhD, Prof. Dr. Claus Felby worked as a research chemist in the biotech industry before returning to academia in 2001. Currently he is heading the Biomass for the 21st Century research platform on advanced biorefinery technologies funded by the Danish Advanced Technology Foundation. Prof. Claus Felby received the Bayer Crop Science Innovation award (2007) as well as the Faculty of Science Innovation award (2014) by the University of Copenhagen.

"Renewable Ressources – The great heart of bioeconomy"

13th of November 2014

University of Bonn

Prof. Wulf Diepenbrock, Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, Germany



"Low-cost shale gas - Burying a young bioeconomy?"

11th of July 2014

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Prof. Kurt Wagemann, Dechema e.V., Germany

Bioeconomy is a must - definitely in the long term!
But what about the short and medium term production of chemicals and polymers? Is there a more or less continuous shift away from coal to petroleum (up to now), to renewable, plant-based raw materials? Which role will natural gas and coal play in the nearer future?
The lecture will address several effects of cheap shale gas exploited via fracking: Decreasing prices for methane and ethylene and expectations on increasing prices for C3-, C4-, C5-base chemicals and aromatics.
In the end there is not just one answer; answers will have to be differentiated depending on the desired functionality of the molecule as well as the behaviour of end producers, retailers and consumers.

 Prof. Kurt Wagemann


"Bioeconomy in Europe: Challenges and perspectives in a globalized bioeconomy"

7th of January 2014

RWTH Aachen

Dr. Ludo Diels, VITO and Professor at Antwerp University, Belgium


Ludo Diels


"Economical perspectives and frame conditions for biomass usage in Europe"

13th of November 2013

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Michael Carus, Nova-Institute, Hürth, Germany


Michael Carus


"Feeding 10 billion with less"

28th of June 2013

Forschungszentrum Jülich

Prof. Mankombu Swaminathan, Chair of Ecotechnology at  UNESCO

Prof. Joachim von Braun, Director at Center of Development Research, University Bonn, Germany