Sebastian Sobek

Professor at Department of Ecology and Genetics; Limnology

+46 18 471 27 18
Visiting address:
Evolutionsbiologiskt centrum (EBC)
Norbyvägen 18 D
752 36 Uppsala
Postal address:
Norbyvägen 18 D
752 36 Uppsala

Short presentation

My research is about carbon cycling in inland water ecosystems, with special focus on belowground processes (carbon sequestration and greenhouse gas production in sediments) and greenhouse gas emission to the atmosphere.

For a popular scienctific portait of my research, click here.

For more information on the research and current projects, continue reading below.



2012 Docent, Limnology, (UU).

2005 PhD, Limnology, (UU)

2001 MSc, Biology, (UU).


Since 2020 Professor in Biology, particularly Limnology, Dep. of Ecology and Genetics, UU.

2015-2018 Guest Professor (part-time) at Federal University of Juiz de Fora, Brazil.

2015-2019 Senior Lecturer, Limnology, UU.

2010-2014 Assistant Professor, Limnology, UU.

2009 Scientist, Swedish Agricultural University (SLU).

2006-2009 Post-doctoral researcher, ETH Zurich and Eawag, Switzerland.

2005 Scientist, Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Corporation.

2000 - 2005 PhD student, Limnology, UU.

1999 - 2000 Research and teaching assistant, UU.


Inland waters, i.e. lakes, running waters and reservoirs, cover only a small fraction of the Earth’s surface, but are disproportionally active sites of carbon cycling. Inland waters receive sizeable loads of terrestrial carbon from the surrounding catchment, triggering intensive processing: the microbial degradation of organic matter leads to high carbon dioxide and methane emissions to the atmosphere, and at the same time, organic carbon burial in sediments constitutes a significant long-term carbon sink.

We combine field measurements, lab experiments and modelling, and our studies range from processes-scale understanding of degradation and preservation in sediments to catchment-scale and global-scale assessments of aquatic carbon fluxes.

A common denominator of all projects is to understand the interactions between biogeochemical cycling in aquatic systems and environmental change. A past ERC project gives a good example of the work we do.

Recently started work investigates carbon fluxes in connection to ecosystem restoration and nature-based solutions (CLIMIPHY, PredPeat).

Current projects:

  • Minimizing the climate footprint of river restoration (CLIMIPHY). PI. 2024-2027, Swedish Research Council for Sustainable Development FORMAS, 1.6 M€.
  • Minimizing the climate footprint of restoring riverine wetlands. PI. 2024-2027, Lamm Foundation, 200 000 €.
  • Anthropogenic perturbation of organic carbon burial in global lake sediments. PI. 2022-2024, Swedish Research Council (VR), 380 000 €.
  • Predicting the effects of peatland rewetting on water retention and water quality (PredPeat). Co-PI. 2022-2026, Swedish Research Council for Sustainable Development FORMAS, 1.6 M€.
  • Sources and dynamics of greenhouse gases in agricultural streams – a process-based approach for improved understanding of a large atmospheric source. Co-PI. 2022-2025, Swedish Research Council (VR), 400 000 €.
  • Leakage of environmentally problematic substances from sediment at dam removal. PI. 2021-2024, Swedish Energy Agency, 400 000 €.

Current people:

  • Simone Moras, PhD student: linkning sediment methane production to methane emission
  • Anna Bottone, PhD student: fate of sediment organic matter at dam removal
  • Esra Reichert, PhD student: carbon burial in constructed wetlands
  • Sahra Gibson, PhD student: water-related ecosystem services after peatland rewetting (co-advisor)
  • Khadija Aziz, PhD student: greenhouse gas emission from agricultural streams (co-advisor)
  • Ana Ayala, Post-doc: modelling of carbon burial in global lakes


Recent publications

All publications



Data sets

Sebastian Sobek