Professor Susanne Schmidt

UQ School of Agriculture and Food Sciences
Affiliated Professor, UQ Centre for Plant Science (QAAFI)
Tel: +61 7 336 51050

Professor Susanne Schmidt leads UQ’s Plant Nutrition and Ecophysiology research group (3 postdocs; 12+ postgraduates and research assistants) with a focus on natural, agricultural and silvicultural systems. 


Susanne leads a team researching natural ecosystems and agro-ecosystems at the interface of plants, microbes and soil. Current and past research projects:

  • New technologies and managements: transforming nitrogen use efficiency in cane production. (CI Matt Redding QLD DAF)
  • NextGen fertilisers and nutrient stewardship - repurposing and efficiently formulating nutrient-rich wastes
  • License to farm - nitrogen use efficiency sugarcane (CIs Prakash Lakshmanan and Nicole Robinson)
  • Developing sugarcane-legume companion cropping systems (Schmidt, Robinson, Ferguson, others)
  • The spinifex project - as source of nano-cellulose for novel materials and economic development of Indigenous communities (CI Darren Martin)
  • Soil carbon sequestration - the role of soil microbesi n tropical reforestation (PhD student Mark Bonner)
  • Nitrogen use efficiency in sorghum (PhD student Belinda Worland)
  • Beneficial microbes to enhance future crop systems (PhD student Shelby Berg)
  • Understanding soil carbon sequestration with soil chronosequences (PhD student Andrew Jones)
  • Organic nitrogen in sugarcane systems (PhD student Scott Buckley)
  • Advancing Livestock Waste as Low Emission-High Efficiency Fertilizers (CI Dr Matt Redding QLD DAF)
  • Ecogenomic profiling of Queensland sugarcane soils for sustainable bioproduction and carbon capture (CI Ragan, Hugenholtz, Schmidt)
  • Functional response of Triodia in the spinifex grasslands of arid Australia (Schmidt, PhD student Xian)
  • Towards sustainable bioproduction systems: harnessing organic nitrogen for plant growth (Schmidt, Paungfoo-Lonhienne, Rentsch, Naesholm)
  • Harnessing Soil Biology (Schmidt, Schenk)
  • Climate Change Adaptation - Rainforest Biodiversity & Climate Change

Research Interests

  • plant function in natural and bioproduction systems
  • soil health and function
  • sustainable land use systems
  • NextGen fertilsers and Nutrient Stewardship
  • organic nutrients
  • soil microbe and interactions with plants
  • biogeochemistry and greenhouse gas emissions
  • organic nutrients as plant nutrient sources and signalling compounds

Suzanne is a member of science and journal advisory boards, a fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, and active in science communication and outreach.

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