Environmental sciences

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The department brings together Bordeaux research units that focus on meeting key environmental, scientific and societal challenges of the future. Research activities cover a broad spectrum of environmental sciences and are conducted on several scales with an integrated approach to the living world, from genomes to ecosystems, including plant, animal and microbial organisms across various spatial and temporal scales (from the paleoenvironment to current or even future environments), and takes into account interactions between agrosystems, hydrosystems, ecosystems, geosystems and social systems.

In order to answer key questions in this field, the multidisciplinary community of the Environmental sciences department uses the full range of scientific and technological knowledge from all the disciplines (biogeochemistry, biology, chemistry, ecology, ecotoxicology, geology, oenology, physiology, physics, modelling, economics, sociology, etc, etc.) usually involved in this type of research work.


  • Jörg Schäfer

    Director, University of Bordeaux professor (Oceanic and Continental Environments and Paleoenvironments Laboratory - EPOC)

  • Valérie Schurdi-Levraud

    Assistant Director, University of Bordeaux professor (Fruit Biology and Pathology Laboratory - BFP)

  • Eric Gomès

    Assistant Director, University of Bordeaux professor (Ecophysiology and Grape Functional Genomics - EGFV)

Find the Department's themes and teams on The hub, the collaborative platform supported by the University of Bordeaux


  • Alexandre Reteau

    Scientific Outreach Coordinator



The research activities of the Environmental sciences department are broken down into three areas:

  • Ecosystems under natural and anthropogenic pressure 
    This field focuses on the structures, functioning, dynamics, viability and resilience of terrestrial (forest, grassland, agricultural) and aquatic (marine, coastal, freshwater) ecosystems under natural and anthropogenic pressure, as well as the induced effects on organisms, their diversity, and resulting functions and on ecosystem services (food, timber, tourism, cultural services, regulation services, etc.). This research is largely based on the quantity and diversity of model ecosystems present in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region, where many ecological and territorial issues intersect, as well as on national and international perspectives.
  • Science of plants and plant products
    This field brings together research conducted on plants, from the cell to the plant itself, including microbiota, as well as on plant derived products, using approaches in plant biology and pathology, genetics and genomics, epigenetics and epigenomics, and oenology. Researchers use methods based on integrative biology in order to model the functioning of the plant and its organs, thus contributing to the development of tools for plant improvement, varietal innovation and product quality enhancement.
  • Geosciences, chemistry and physics of fluid envelopes This field focuses on the characterisation, quantification and modelling of various aspects of the Earth's surface and subsurface, using geoscience, aquatic physics and chemistry approaches. The research integrates different deep sedimentary environments, their future as reservoirs of various fluids, and natural archives that bear witness to the evolution of environments and climates over the course of the Earth's history.

Major Research Programmes (GPR) & Impulsion Research Networks (RRI)

A Major Research Programme certified in the spring of 2021 is coordinated by this department:

  • BPS - Plant Sciences - coordinated by Yves Gibon, INRAE researcher in the Fruit Biology Pathology laboratory (BFP - INRAE & University of Bordeaux)
    Other research department invoved: Social sciences of contemporary changes (CHANGES)
    Other organisations involved: BIOGECO, BFP, EGFV, Ispa, BSE, LBM, Mycsa, Oenology unit, Save, BIC, BIC-PIV (Bordeaux imaging centre-plant imaging unit) and Vine Wine Grande Ferrade

The department is also associated with another GPR:

The department also coordinates an Impulsion Research Network (RRI):

  • Tackling global change: integrated approaches for people and environment coordinated by Caitriona Carter, INRAE researcher in the ETTIS unit (Environment, territories and infrastructures - INRAE) and Sylvain Delzon, INRAE researcher in the  Biodiversity, Genes and Communities laboratory (Biogeco - Inrae and University of Bordeaux)
    Other research department involved: Social sciences of contemporary changes (CHANGES)
    Other organisations involved: BIOGECO, BPH, CED, EABX, EGFV, EPOC, ETTIS, G&E, GRECCAU, BSE, IMB, ISPA, LabPsy, PASSAGES, SAVE, Oenology research unit


Key figures

  • 9

    joint research units

    4 research units, 2 hosting teams, 1 joint service unit

  • 40

    research teams

  • 830

    academic staff

    & 360 doctoral and post-doctoral students

  • 3

    doctoral schools

    Environmental sciences, Life and health sciences, Chemical sciences

Organisation and partners

Departmental units

Unités en rattachement principal 

Unités associées 


Conseil de composante

Le conseil du département est composé de 15 membres, dont 8 enseignants-chercheurs et chercheurs, 3 personnels BIATSS/ITA et 3 doctorants et post-doctorants nommés dans les 6 unités de recherche en rattachement principal au département, ainsi que d’une personnalité extérieure.

Comités des directeurs

Le comité est composé des directeurs des 14 unités de recherche du département, du directeur de l’ISVV et du directeur de l’OASU.

Conseil scientifique

Le conseil scientifique du Département est composé de 3 experts nationaux et internationaux (1 expert par axe thématique du département).

Other institutes

  • Institut des sciences de la vigne et du vin (ISVV)
  • Observatoire aquitaine des sciences de l'univers (OASU)


  • BIOGECO : Plateforme GénoBois, Plateforme Génome-Transcriptome
  • BFP : Plateforme Métabolome, Plateforme Imagerie du Végétal (composante du BIC)
  • EPOC : Plateforme Majeurs et métaux traces (M&Ms), Plateforme de chimie analytique organique environnementale (PLATINE), Plateforme Analyse des carottes sédimentaires, Plateforme Isotopie, Plateforme Mesures Physiques, Plateforme Biologie moléculaire, Plateforme Biodiversité, Plateforme Chimie, Cellule de Transfert CDTA (CTT), Cellule de Transfert Géotransfert
  • LBM : Plateforme Lipidomique (composante de la plateforme Métabolome), Cellule de Transfert LEB Aquitaine Transfert
  • OENO : Plateau de Nano Vinification (Bordeaux Vinif), Cellule de Transfert Microflora, Cellule de Transfert Amarante Process, Cellule de Transfert Polyphénols Biotech, Centre de Ressources Biologiques Œnologiques (CRBO)
  • Centre de données pour l'observation en Nouvelle Aquitaine (OASU)



Anthropization, biodiversity, predictive biology, global change, conflicts, conservation, contamination, societal demand, development, sustainability, ecosystems, ecological status, operations, geoscience, adaptive management, coastal hydrodynamics, hydrogeology, inequalities, geological engineering, interdependencies, biotic interactions, interdependencies, fluid mechanics, plant metabolism, modelling, morphodynamics, paleoclimatology, pollution, product quality, resilience, restoration, natural hazards, sedimentology, ecosystem services, stratigraphy, biotic and abiotic stresses, structuring, remote sensing, ecotoxicity, viability.