University of Zagreb, Faculty of Agriculture

Lecture :: Miriam Muñoz-Rojas, PhD


Restoring soil function in degraded land: challenges and opportunities in a changing world
Friday, April 5, 2019.:: 12:00 pm :: Chamber Hall

We are pleased to invite you to attend the following lecture “Restoring soil function in degraded land: challenges and opportunities in a changing world” which will be held by Miriam Muñoz-Rojas, PhD, University of New South Wales, Australia on Friday, April 5, 2019 at 12:00 pm, Chamber Hall.


Global environmental changes and other anthropogenic impacts are rapidly transforming the structure and functioning of ecosystems worldwide. These changes are leading to land degradation with an estimated 25 % of the global land surface being affected. Over the past 5 years (2013-2018), I have coordinated the SOIL program of the Restoration Seedbank Initiative, a multidisciplinary research project that aims to build knowledge and design strategies to restore human-impacted landscapes in Western Australia and other arid and semi-arid landscapes worldwide. Within this program, a series of micro and mesocosms studies and field trials have been conducted to advance our knowledge on soil limitations and to provide solutions to effectively overcome these challenges in arid ecosystem restoration. These studies include (i) the analysis of the influence of climate and edaphic factors in the recruitment of arid zone seedlings and (ii) the evaluation of soil physicochemical and microbiological indicators to assess functionality of restored soils in degraded land and (ii) the development of nature-based strategies based on bio-tools to enhance soil function. The results of these studies can allow us to propose recommendations for integrating soil science in cost-effective landscape-scale restoration practices in ecosystems worldwide.

Biographical Sketch

Dr Miriam Muñoz-Rojas is a Research Fellow/Assistant Professor at the University of New South Wales (Sydney, Australia). Miriam completed her PhD in Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences in December 2012 at the University of Seville and holds a Master of Environmental Sciences from Wageningen University (Netherlands). During her PhD studies, Miriam’s research focused on soil vulnerability assessment and soil suitability for plant establishment. One of the most significant outcomes of this work was the development of the CarboSOIL software, a tool used for soil carbon assessment of Mediterranean soils. During the last five years, she has led the Soil Program of an industry-based research project focused on developing science to drive landscape restoration of biodiverse degraded ecosystems. Her interdisciplinary research combines ecophysiological, biogeochemical and molecular techniques with experimental and modeling approaches to explore the functioning of natural and restored ecosystems.

Kontakt: ARC DECRA Research Fellow
Centre for Ecosystem Science
School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of New South Wales
Adjunct Senior Research Fellow
University of Western Australia

The lecture is organised by the Department of Soil Science and International Relations Office.