There is no doubt that KU Leuven is one of the most famous universities in Europe. This summer, Magdalena Gus-Stolarczyk, Anna Szwagierczak, Dominik Kaim and Michał Jakiel, HES-GEO team members, has chosen it as their short research destination.

If you would like to read more about Land-Use team visit team’s ‘about us’ post

Why KU Leuven?

Each of the visitors shares with us their motivations for going to Leuven.

Magdalena focuses in her research on carbon sequestration in mountain ecosystems. A broad approach to research the interference of forestry, landscape, and land use using earth observation data and statistical models in the Nature and Landscape Unit of KU Leuven, was the main reason for her decision.

Dominik highlighted that for him, it was the high position in innovative rankings and common research interest with his scientific mentor at Leuven, Prof. AntonVan Rompae, that played the most important reasons for going to Leuven.

“What convinced me was the scope of the scientific problems our partners solve in their research. Prof. Anton Van Rompaey, my mentor at KU Leuven, is working on the topics focused on the linkages between depopulation processes and land use changes. These changes have a substantial impact on various ecosystem services and biodiversity. This is exactly what we are interested in our research team in HES GEO. This was also a topic we developed in the already submitted seed project within the CELSA Alliance project call,” adds Dominik and Michał share his views.

For Anna, soft skills such as research work organization and networking were the most important.

“My main motivation was to observe research and project work. I wanted to get to know how it works, how it is organised, and how it looks from a member’s point of view. I was also curious to meet partners from KU Leuven and learn something about their research in the HES-GEO project and aside from it.”

Dominik in Leuven


Dominik used the visit to get new practical information about data accessibility and project work organization. Magdalena focused on field trips and discovering methodology. Michał has used his time for consultations about his research. For Anna, it was an excellent opportunity to explore different ways of organizing academic work and life.

“After the visit, I have a different perspective on academic life and work that gives me a new enthusiasm for my studies and projects participation. I feel I understand them better and better, which is helpful in making decisions and choosing ways to develop my geographic interests. Thanks to my visit to Leuven, I also have a broad concept of future project activities,” wraps up Anna.

HES-GEO Land Use team members: Dominik, Anna and Michał

All of our visitors enjoyed their stay at the KU Leuven and had there a great and productive time.