Why do we need EMPHASIS?

Generating synergies
  • Special equipment
  • Data management: Standards/ protocols/ interoperability
  • Education/ training and outreach
  • Boost different roles of academia and industry
  • Development access
  • Use access
  • Dissemination access
Generating novel opportunities
  • Unique installations
  • Link field phenotyping in diverse climate/ environment zones
Phenotyping as a tool
  • Link to user demands
  • Handle diversity of solutions
  • Link to models (bilateral)
  • Link to omics


Sustainable intensification of crop production is a major challenge to ensure amount and quality of biomass for nutrition and industry. Designing high yielding crop varieties adapted to contrasting environmental conditions, climate change and management, is a priority. Technological advancements have boosted the characterisation of genomes, without sufficient development in phenotypic characterisation. The mission of EMPHASIS addresses an important bottleneck in sustainable and improved crop production in different, current and future, agro-climatic scenarios: how to translate from high-throughput genotypic analysis of crop variants to high-throughput and high-resolution phenotyping in order to identify high-yield crop varieties for defined environmental conditions. To achieve this, EMPHASIS proposes a major upgrade/reorientation of existing European Research Infrastructure by linking and developing national initiatives, amongst which are national platforms with (semi)-controlled conditions for high-resolution phenotyping and high-throughput phenomics, experimental fields with control of rainfall and CO2 highly-equipped with phenotyping devices, a coordinated network of field experiments in distributed sites with lighter but efficient phenotyping close to practical breeding set-ups and modelling platforms to test existing and virtual combinations of alleles in different climates and management practices. Some methods used will include sensors and imaging in plant architecture and dynamics, consistent distributed information system, and statistics and dynamic modelling.

EMPHASIS can test genotypes in current and future agro-climatic scenarios and provide community access to controlled and field conditions; link data acquisition to a European data management and to crop models simulating performance in current and future climates; develop, evaluate and disseminate novel technologies and provide new opportunities to European companies and make infrastructures and concepts accessible to academia and industry in Europe.

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EMPHASIS is an ESFRI listed project supported by the European Union