Emmanuelle Javaux


Born in 1967, Emmanuelle Javaux is a biologist of the University of Liège, with a PhD from Dalhousie University (Canada). She is also full professor and director of the University of Liège PPP (Palaeobiogeology, Palaeopalynology, Palaeobotany) Lab in the Geology Department, whose presidency she has assumed for 7 years until 2009. She is director of the GEOLOGY Research Unit since 2016. After her bachelor degree in Biology at UNamur and a master degree with honors in zoology at ULiège, she continued her educational training with a qualifying year of geology at the Dalhousie University, Halifax, in Canada, and then obtained a PhD in Earth Sciences at the same university in 2000. She then carried out postdoctoral studies at the University of Harvard for 3 years, before returning to Belgium with a BELSPO return grant to the AGO (Astrophysics) Department. Her research areas include the study of the earliest traces of life using multidisciplinary macro to microscale approaches, the evolution of the Precambrian biosphere, the early evolution of complex life (eukaryotes), the characterization and fossilization of biosignatures useful for paleobiology and astrobiology, and the conditions for planetary habitability. Her research is supported by the European Research Council project ERC StG « ELiTE », Belgian federal IAP (Interuniversity Attraction Pole)  « PLANET TOPERS », the Francqui Fondation, the NFSR, the Agouron Foundation (USA), and ULiège. She is president of the NFSR contact group  « Astrobiologie » and belgian representative of the EU COST network « ORIGINS ».  Among international collaborations, she participates to projects in Canada, in China, in South Africa,  in Russia, in Australia, in Japan, in RDC and Mauritania, with the NASA and the ESA space mission Exomars 2020. She obtained the Adolphe Wetrems award from the Royal Academy of Belgium (2010) and was Francqui Foundation Research professor (2013-2016).  Since 2014, she is a member of the class of Sciences Royal Academy of Belgium.

Acknowledged expert worldwide, Emmanuelle Javaux is very regularly invited to participate in conferences, seminars and symposia on her research fields, to give lectures to the general public, and is a member of around fifteen science societies. She also presides over the ULg’s Royal Society for Sciences (2009) and the FNRS’s ‘Astrobiology’ contact group.


Consult the list of publications on ORBI



See article(s) and video(s)

A new approach for understanding the evolution of microbes on early Earth?
Defining a planet’s habitability: not as simple as all that
En quête de signature de vie...
Les premières traces de vie (Vidéo ULg.TV)