General information

Full name                               
European Infrastructure for Multi-Scale Plant Phenotyping
And Simulation for Food Security in a Changing Climate
Short nameEMPHASIS
Legal statusproject in the preparatory phase
Operational statuspartial operable (complementary I3 project EPPN2020)                  
Coordinating institutionForschungszentrum Jülich
Prof. Ulrich Schurr
RI member countries  
(of the Preparatory Phase)         

emphasis [at]



National nodes

This sections provides an overview on the national subsidiaries of the RI.


NameContact, website
Forschungszentrum Jülich

Contact: Roland Pieruschka,

                                 r.pieruschka [at]

               Sven Fahrner, s.fahrner [at]

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research CouncilContact: Sonny Rathod, Sonny.Rathod [at]
Consiglio Nazionale delle RicercheContact: Francesco Loreto, francesco.loreto [at]

Stichting Wageningen Research

Contact: Rick van de Zedde, rick.vandezedde [at]
Institut National de la Recherche AgronomiqueContact: Francois Tardieu, francois.tardieu [at]
VIBContact: Merlijn Morisse, memor [at]
The University of NottinghamContact: Malcolm Bennett, 
Universite Catholique de LouvainContact: Xavier Draye, xavier.draye [at] Website



Description of the organisation

EMPHASIS is a pan-European distributed plant phenotyping infrastructure project. EMPHASIS will focus on developing and enabling access to plant phenotyping infrastructure and provision of services, essential for the analysis of crop performance with respect to structure, function, quality and interaction with the environment. It will thus support the exploitation of crop genetic diversity required for the enhancement of plant productivity and progress in plant breeding.

Plant derived products are at the centre of grand challenges posed by increasing requirements for food, feed and bio-based raw materials. Integrating approaches across all scales from molecular to field applications are necessary to develop sustainable plant production with higher yield and at the same time using limited resources. While significant progress has been made in molecular and genetic approaches in recent years, the quantitative analysis of plant performance has become the major bottleneck. The challenge is to address multi-scale phenotyping for analysing genotype performance under diverse environmental conditions and quantify the diversity of traits contributing to performance, i.e. plant architecture, major functions, yield components and quality. Improvement of plant performance under changing climates requires the use of different categories of infrastructure combined with a coordinated infrastructure for storing and analysing data, and platforms for plant/crop modelling associated with phenotyping platforms.

Thus, plant phenotyping focuses on development and implementation of non-invasive technology, which can be used beyond plant sciences in disciplines such as image analysis, remote sensing or automation engineering. Additionally, plant phenotyping produces a number of data relevant for basic understanding in life sciences and practical breeding.

Service offer

A list of services offered by EMPHASIS can be downloaded here.