Jan Kofod Schjørring

Jan Kofod Schjørring

Professor emeritus


University of Copenhagen (KU), Faculty of Science

Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences

DK-1871 Frederiksberg C, Denmark Email: jks@plen.ku.dk; Phone: +45 35 33 34 95



1980 M.Sc. Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University (KVL), DK 1985 Ph.D. University of Lund, Sweden & KVL, DK

1998 D.Sc. Royal Veterinary and Agricultural Univ., DK


Current position

Professor of Plant Nutrition, Plant and Soil Science Section, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen


Professional career

2006-            Professor of Plant Nutrition, University of Copenhagen (UCph)

2005-2018    Head of Plant and Soil Science Section, UCph

2012-2015    Vice-Head of Department (Research), Plant & Environ.Sci., UCph

2010-2012    Leader of the Elite Research Area Plant Biosystems, UCph

2000-2005    Research Council Professor (Plant Nutritional Physiology), UCph

1995-1996    Visiting professor, University of British Columbia, Canada

1989-1999    Associate professor, Royal Veterinary & Agricultural University

1985-1988    Assistant professor, Technical University of Denmark

1980-1985    Ph.D. Fellowship, Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University


Research expertise

The research expertise covers processes involved in nutrient acquisition and utilization by higher plants and the functions of mineral elements in plant metabolism, plant environment interactions, plant productivity and stress tolerance. The work spans disciplinary expertise in molecular biology, biochemistry, crop physiology and biotechnology.

The list of publications includes 200+ articles published in peer-reviewed journals, 16 book chapters, 69 other publications and 1 patent. The total number of citations received by the peer reviewed articles exceeds 10000. The average number of citations per paper is 80+ and the H-index is 69 (Web of Science)/85 (Google Scholar).


Research funding

In total received >12 mill. € in external grants


Research projects:

  • 2022 Foliar fertilization – knowledge synthesis. The Danish Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries
  • 2019-2022 Silicon – boosting the natural stress tolerance of plants. The Danish Research Council | Technology and Production Sciences
  • 2013-2018 BIO-VALUE: A strategic platform for innovation and research on value added products from biomass). Innovation Fund Denmark (overall platform co-ordinator;  www.biovalue.dk)
  • 2014-2017 Plant root diffusional barriers – genesis and implications for nutrient efficiency and stress tolerance (ROOT BARRIERS). ERA-CAPS (partner)

  • 2012-2017 B21st: Biomass for the 21 st century: Integrated biorefining technologies for shipping fuels and bio-based chemicals (HTF, 2012-2016; co-ordinator of Biology platform)

  • 2011-2015 NUTRIEFFICIENT: Improved agricultural sustainability using molecular strategies to optimize nutrient use efficiency in cereals (DSF; 2011-2013; co-ordinator)

  • Foliar nitrogen fertilization of wheat crops (FTP; 2009-2013)

  • Development of genetically modified cereals adapted to increased atmospheric CO 2 (DFFE; 2010-2014)

  • Biotechnology for Bio-fuel Crops (DSF; 2010-2013).

  • META-PHOR: Metabolomics for Plants, Health and Outreach (EU-FP6; 2007-2010)

  • PHIME: Public Health Impact of long-term, low-level mixed element exposure in susceptible population strata (EU-FP6; 2006-2011)

  • NitroEurope: The nitrogen cycle and its influence on the European greenhouse gas balance (EU-FP6; 2006-2011)

  • Cisgenetic barley and wheat for animal feed (DFFE; 2007-2011)

  • iKORN: Improved Quality and Disease Resistance in Cereal Crops (DSF; 2008-2012)

  • Equipment grant from the Carlsberg Research Foundation (2008)

  • A Danish Plant Research Network: Supporting the foundation for iron and zinc biofortification (DANIDA & the international HarvestPlus Biofortification program; 2004-2008)

  • FTP large research project (Post-genomic crop science from models to targets: Loading of zinc into the developing barley grain (2005-2008; co-ordinator)


Patents and innovation

  • Patent (2005): High capacity ammonium/ammonia transporter

  • Co-founder of spin-out company NutriNostica (2006-)

  • Agro Business Park Innovation Prize (2005): Early diagnosis of Mn deficiency in cereal plants. Agro Business Park Innovation Prize (2010): PhytoPhos: Exact measurement of plant available phosphorus in soil


Awards and prizes

  • Distinguished Visiting Professor Award, University of South Australia (2015)

  • Agro Business Park Innovation award: Exact measurement of plant-available P in soil (2010)

  • Agro Business Park Innovation award:  Early diagnosis of Mn deficiency (2005)

  • Ulrich Brinchs Honorary Award (1999)

  • Ellen, Anders and Christian Petersen Foundation (1997)


PhD supervision

Main supervisor of 25+ completed PhD projects and 5 ongoing. Member of the Advisory Board of the Research School for Biotechnology (2008-2012)


Teaching areas and experience

Plant Science, Plant Nutrition and Plant Ecophysiology. A large experience in course planning, examination, lecturing and laboratory exercises at under-graduate, graduate and postgraduate level. Supervision of >50 M.Sc. projects and >30 B.Sc. projects


Participation in Councils, Boards and Committees

  • Member of the Green Transition Grant Committee, Independent Research Fund Denmark (2021, 2022)
  • Chairman of the Novo Nordic Foundation Committee for Plant Science, Agriculture and Food Biotechnology (2020-2021)
  • President of The International Plant Nutrition Council (2013 - 2017)
  • Member of The Danish Research Council | Technology and Production (2013-2018)

  • Member of the Novo Nordic Foundation Committee for Interdisciplinary Synergy (2014-2018)

  • Member of the Novo Nordic Foundation’s Committee for Biotechnology Based Synthesis and Production (2012-2019)

  • Board of the Hofmansgave Foundation (2009-)

  • Member of The International Plant Nutrition Council (2002-)

  • Elected President of the Federation of the European Societies of Plant Biology (2006-08)

  • Elected President of the Scandinavian Plant Physiology Society (2000-08).


Editorial work

Editor since 1998 of the international journal Physiologia Plantarum; associate editor of the journal Frontiers in Plant Nutrition. Regular reviewer for >10 journals


Research evaluation

Evaluator for the European Research Council (2011-); Member of the LIFE-Sciences Evaluation Panel for EU Marie Curie Individual Fellowships (2005-present) and the EU-INTAS programme (2004-2006). Evaluator for National Research Councils in the UK, Germany, Norway, Spain, Qatar and Cyprus (2006-present). Member of the evaluation panel for the ERA-NET Plant Genomics (2006-2007)


University management and administration

  • Chairman of the Study Board for Natural Resources, Faculty of Science, Univ. Copenhagen (2019-)
  • Vice-Head of Department for Research (2012-2015)
  • Member of the Academic Council and the Research and Innovation Board of the Faculty of (Life) Sciences University of Copenhagen (2007-2012).
  • From 2004-2007 member of the Supreme Governing Board (Bestyrelsen) of University of Copenhagen and the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University (RVAU), DK.
  • Chairman/member of numerous committees appointing new academic staff at national and international universities.

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