Sophie F von Fromm

|Research Associate

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Sophie is a terrestrial biogeochemist. Her research focuses on the vulnerability of soil organic carbon to climate and land use change. During her PhD, she investigated factors and processes controlling soil organic carbon storage and persistence across sub-Saharan Africa. For her work, she uses a wide range of methods, including field measurements, statistical tools and lab techniques. She also contributed to the development and maintenance of the International Soil Radiocarbon Database (ISRaD), which allows the study of soil organic carbon persistence at the global scale. As a Neukom Postdoctoral Fellow, Sophie is improving the predictive power and accuracy of existing soil models for sub-Saharan Africa. She is passionate about rowing and loves to spend her free time outdoors.

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Life Sciences Center, Room 345
HB 6044


Biological Sciences

Selected Publications

  • Peer-reviewed:

    Sierra CA, Bolinder M, Braakhekke MC, von Fromm SF, Kätterer T, Luo Z, Parvin N, Wang G (2023) Modelling carbon sequestration in the subsoil and the time required to stabilize carbon at timescales relevant for climate change mitigation. Global Change Biology, doi:

    von Fromm SF, Doetterl S, Butler BM, Aynekulu E, Berhe AA, Haefele SM, McGrath SP, Shepherd KD, Six J, Tamene L, Tondoh EJ, Vågen T-G, Winowiecki LA, Trumbore SE, Hoyt AM (2023) Controls on timescales of soil organic carbon persistence across sub-Saharan Africa. Global Change Biology, doi:

    Check out this youtube video by Thomas Fester citing this article:

    Todd-Brown KEO, Abramoff RZ, Beem-Miller J, Blair HK, Earl S, Frederick KJ, Fuka DR, Guevara Santamaria M, Harden JW, Heckman K, Heran LJ, Holmquist JR, Hoyt AM, Klinges DH, LeBauer DS, Malhotra A, McClelland SC, Nave LE, Rocci KS, Schaeffer SM, Stoner S, van Gestel N, von Fromm SF, Younger ML (2022) Reviews and syntheses: The promise of big diverse soil data, moving current practices towards future potential. Biogeosciences, doi:

    Heckman KA, Hicks Pries CE, Lawrence CR, Rasmussen C, Crow SE, Hoyt AM, von Fromm SF, Shi Z, Stoner S, McGrath C, Beem-Miller J, Berhe AA Blankinship J, Keiluweit M, Marín-Spiotta E, Monroe G, Plante AF, Schimel J, Sierra CA, Thompson A, Wagai R (2021) Beyond bulk: Density fractions explain heterogeneity in global soil carbon abundance and persistence. Global Change Biology, doi:

    von Fromm SF, Hoyt AM, Lange M, Acquah GE, Aynekulu E, Berhe AA, Haefele SM, McGrath SP, Shepherd KD, Sila AM, Six J, Towett EK, Trumbore SE, Vågen T-G, Weullow E, Winowiecki LA, Doetterl S (2021) Continental-scale controls on soil organic carbon across sub-Saharan Africa. SOIL, doi: Highlight paper.

    Lawrence CR, Beem-Miller J, Hoyt AM, Monroe G, Sierra CA, Stoner S, Heckman K, Blankinship JC, Crow SE, McNicol G, Trumbore S, Levine PA, Vindusková O, Todd-Brown K, Rasmussen C, Hicks Pries CE, Schädel C, McFarlane K, Doetterl S, Hatté C, He Y, Treat C, Harden JW, Torn MS, Estop-Aragonés C, Berhe AA, Keiluweit M, Della Rosa Kuhnen Á, Marion-Spiotta E, Plante AF, Thompson A, Shi Z, Schimel JP, Vaughn LJS, von Fromm SF, Wagai R (2020) An open-source database for the synthesis of soil radiocarbon data: International Soil Radiocarbon Database (ISRaD) version 1.0. Earth System Science Data, doi:

    Book chapter:

    Doetterl S, Abramoff R, Cornelis J-T, Frossard A, Fiener P, Garland G, Kaiser M, Laub M, Opfergelt S, Van de Broek M, van den Broek S, von Fromm SF (2022) Understanding soil organic carbon dynamics at larger scale. In C Rumpel (Ed.) Understanding and fostering soil carbon sequestration. Cambridge, UK: Burleigh Dodds Series in Agricultural Science.