Nieuwelaan 38

1860 Meise



  • B290-taxonomie-van-planten


I started my professional career doing pure scientific research: taxonomy and systematics of tropical African genera of the Rubiaceae. I described new species and performed revisions for the genera Coffea, Corynanthe, Pausinystalia & Psilanthus.

Once I started working in the National Botanic Garden of Belgium, my task evolved towards collection management. From 1999 till 2003, my main task was assisting the curator in everyday collection management, e.g. the curation of large new herbarium acquisitions (e.g the Carnoy Herbarium, Herbarium Sotiaux).

From 2004 onwards the Garden became a partner in several digitalisation projects (e.g. African Plants Initiative, European Network for Biodiversity Information and Belgian Biodiversity Platform). These projects required the introduction of international standards for digitalisation, a new database and the training of new staff. Between 2004 and 2006 I made an important contribution to these projects. Additional to these projects I compiled a database with information on botanical collectors in the RD Congo, Rwanda and Burundi and updated the botanical gazetteer for these countries.

From 2007 onwards the rehabilitation of Central African Botanic Gardens and Herbaria became an important duty of the National Botanic Garden of Belgium. I collaborated on these rehabilitation projects, funded by the European Union, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Belgian Cooperation for Development and the Belgian Ministry of Sciences. This included, amongst other things, teaching a course on collection management and producing a manual for this course, initiating the digitalisation of herbarium collections in the RD Congo, Rwanda and Burundi, etc.. I was the Gardens representative in the inter-institutional committee of the ‘Congo-2010 project’. (see also under ‘Expertise”) .

March 2011 I became the acting curator of the vascular plants herbarium, with about 3 million herbarium specimens, 12 permanent technical staff members, volunteers, temporary staff and about 100 visitors a year. The everyday management of the collections (loans, returned loans, digitalisation, scanning, etc.), the follow up of current projects, the implementation of new international standards and procedures and the efforts to link the herbarium to new emerging opportunities are a full time occupation. I trained also herbarium staff from abroad.

 In April 2013 I became the Conservator of the Herbarium of the Botanic Garden Meise

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