David Seveno

Name, organization: David Seveno, KU Leuven 

Current position: Associate professor

Areas of expertise: Physical chemistry of interfaces & nanoscale modelling

Roles in FibreNet: Supervisor of Ali Khodayari and co-supervisor of Alexandros Prapavesis


Why is FibreNet an interesting project for you?

Nanoscale modelling is a fantastic tool to explore the complex interplay between atoms and molecules and unravel the mechanisms controlling, for example, the mechanical properties of materials. However, it has not yet been fully exploited to understand the role of cellulose. FibreNet is then a unique spot to develop such research field and at the same time benefit from the expertise of a pool of experimentalists challenging our models and predictions. 















Where were you born/ where have you lived as a child?

I was born in Brittany, a region located in the north west of France. I moved to Belgium when I was 25-year-old, i.e. in a couple of years, I will have spent half of my life in this marvelous and crazy country.



Do-it-yourself. The summer holidays at home gave me time to practice my skills. This resulted in the construction of a small hut at the back of my garden, close to the pond. Nice scenery and ideal location to prepare a new course in adhesion (no wifi!)


What has been the biggest change in your working life, and how did you adapt to it?

There were 2 changes actually:

  • Moving from Brittany to Belgium with nothing else than what I was able to carry in my small car.
  • Moving from my former job to KU Leuven, it meant new research field, new working language (English), new language to learn (Dutch), new colleagues, new students, in short, new everything, and 3h30 to commute door to door……


What has been the hardest decision you have made during the last years?

The hardest decision was to accept that I cannot control everything anymore. Too many tasks and too few hours in a day. Gathering a good team of technicians, Master students, PhD students, and post-docs (without any order of preference) around you is then vital.