PhD and postdoctorate programs





Jordi Voltas Velasco

Full Professor
University of Lleida
Department of Crop and Forest Sciences

+34 973 702855(Telephone)
+34 973 238264(Fax)
Personal web page:
Office:Edifici Principal A, despatx 0.12.2

Academic background

PhD, University of Lleida, 1998
M.S. Technical University of Catalonia, 1992
B.S. Technical University of Catalonia, 1989

Professional experience

· 1996 - 2000. Assistant Professor, University of Lleida, Department of Crop Production and Forest Science
· · 2000 – Present. Associate Professor, University of Lleida, Department of Crop Production and Forest Science


· My research interest focuses on the study of plant ecophysiology in Mediterranean conditions. In particular, I am interested on the assessment of potentially valuable traits for physiological breeding relevant to both agronomic and forest tree species. As an extension to this approach, I am also involved in the investigation of proper frameworks for the integration of physiological and environmental information in statistical models aimed at a better characterisation of the phenomenon known as genotype by environment interaction. Some of these models are now being applied to the characterisation of gene by environment interactions by using information derived from molecular marker data. At the ecophysiology level, special interest concerns the application of stable isotopes (13C, 18O) in plant ecology, physiology and breeding in species such as small grain cereals, Mediterranean hardwoods (Quercus sp., Pistacia sp.) and conifers (Pinus halepensis). The information obtained allows relating the isotopic signatures to climatic parameters such as precipitation, vapour pressure deficit and temperature regime that, in addition to the intrinsic interest of understanding the relation between plants and the environment, can be used as the basis for palaeoenvironmental inference. In this context, I am involved, together with colleagues of our Department and of other Universities and Institutions, in the applicability of stable isotopes in studies of climatic reconstruction using the information included in fossil plant remains gathered in archaeological sites. These studies are being carried out in the Iberian Peninsula and the Fertile Crescent region (Syria and Turkey) in order to assess the environmental and agricultural conditions prevailing at the beginning of Agriculture in the Old World.


· · 71046, Forest Nurseries, with J. Pemán; (4.5 credits), 2nd semester
· · 73351, Forest Production, including Forest Genetics and Tree Breeding, with A. Aunós and L. Serrano; (18 credits), 2nd semester
· · 92579, Experimental Design and Data Analysis, with R. Blanco, L. Torres and I. Romagosa; (6 credits), 2nd semester
· · 92315, Instrumentation in Ecophysiology, with J. Costa, J. Lampurlanés, F. Santiveri and L. Serrano; (5 credits), 2nd semester

Recent publications

· Aguilera M., Ferrio J.P., Pérez G., Araus J.L., Voltas J.  2011. Holocene changes in precipitation seasonality in the western Mediterranean Basin: a multi-species approach using d13C of archaeobotanical remains. Journal of Quaternary Science  DOI: 10.1002/jqs.1533

· Ferrio J.P., Arab G., Buxó R., Guerrero E., Molist M., Voltas J., Araus J.L.  2011. Agricultural expansion and settlement economy in Tell Halula (Mid-Euphrates valley): a diachronic study from Early Neolithic to present.  Journal of Arid Environments   http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0140196311002850

· Resco V., Querejeta J.I., Ogle K., Voltas J., Sebastià M.T., Serrano-Ortiz P., Linares J..C, Moreno-Gutiérrez C., Herrero A., Carreira J.A., Torres-Cañabate P., Valladares F. 2010. Stable isotope views on ecosystem function: challenging or challenged. Biology Letters 6:287-289

· Aletà N., Vilanova A., Diaz R., Voltas J. 2009. Genetic variation for carbon isotope composition in Juglans regia: relationships with growth, phenology and climate of origin. Annals of Forest Science 66: 413p1- 413p11

· Aguilera M., Espinar C., Ferrio J.P., Pérez G., Voltas J. 2009. A map of autumn precipitation for the third millennium BP in the eastern Iberian Peninsula from charcoal carbon isotopes.  Journal of Geochemical Exploration 102:157-165

· Voltas J., Ferrio J.P., Alonso N., Araus J.L. 2008. Stable carbon isotopes in archaeobotanical remains and palaeoclimate. Contributions to Science 4(1):21-31

· Voltas J., Chambel M.R., Prada M.A. 2008. Diferenciación intraespecífica en eficiencia en el uso del agua y adaptación climática en Pinus halepensis Mill. Cuadernos de la Sociedad Española de Ciencias Forestales 24:131-137

· Aguilera M., Espinar C., Ferrio J.P., Pérez G., Voltas J. 2008. A map of autumn precipitation for the third millennium BP in the eastern Iberian Peninsula from charcoal carbon isotopes. Journal of Geochemical Exploration doi:10.1016/j.gexplo.2008.11.019

· Voltas J., Chambel M.R., Prada M.A., Ferrio J.P. 2008. Climate-related variability in carbon and oxygen stable isotopes among populations of Aleppo pine grown in common-garden tests. Trees-Structure and Function 22:759-769

· Aguilera M., Araus J.L., Voltas J., Rodriguez-Ariza M.O., Molina F., Rovira N., Buxo R., Ferrio J.P. 2008. Stable carbon and nitrogen isotopes and quality traits of fossil cereal grains provide clues on sustainability at the beginnings of Mediterranean agriculture. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry 22:1653-1663

· Ferrio J.P., Mateo M.A., Bort J., Abdalla O., Voltas J., Araus J.L. 2007. Relationships of grain d13C and d18O with wheat phenology and yield under water-limited conditions. Annals of Applied Biology 150(29:207-215

· Ferrio J.P., Arab G., Bort J., Buxó R., Molist M., Voltas J., Araus J.L. 2007. Land use changes and crop productivity in early agriculture: comparison with current conditions in the mid-Euphrates valley. Options Mediterranéennes 59:167-174

· Serra J., Voltas J., López A., Capellades G., Salvia J. 2007. Contribució de la millora genètica a l’increment dels rendiments del blat de moro a Catalunya. Dossier Tècnic. DARP. Generalitat de Catalunya 19(3):10

· Voltas J., Pemán J., Fusté F., 2007. Phenotypic diversity and delimitation between wild and cultivated forms of the genus Pyrus in North-eastern Spain based on morpho- metric analyses. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution,. 54: 1473–1487.

· Araus J.L., Ferrio J.P., Buxó R., Voltas J. 2007. The historical perspective of dryland agriculture: lessons learned from 10 000 years of wheat cultivation. Journal of Experimental Botany 58(2):131-145

· Ferrio J.P., Alonso N., Voltas J., Araus J.L. 2006. Grain weight changes over time in ancient cereal crops: Potential roles of climate and genetic improvement. Journal of Cereal Science 44:323-332

· Ferrio J.P., Alonso N., Lopez J.B., Araus J.L., Voltas J. 2006. Carbon isotope composition of fossil charcoal reveals aridity changes in the NW Mediterranean Basin. Global Change Biology 12: 1253-1266.

· Voltas J., Hernández M., Serrano L., Pemán J. 2006. Carbon isotope discrimination, gas exchange and stem growth of four Euramerican hybrid poplars under different watering regimes. New Forests 31: 435-451.

· Pemán J., Voltas J., Gil-Pelegrín E. 2006. Morphological and functional variability in the root system of Quercus ilex L. subject to confinement: consequences for afforestation. Annals of Forest Science 63: 425-430.

· Ferrio J.P., Voltas J. 2005. Carbon and oxygen isotope ratios in wood constituents of Pinus halepensis as indicators of precipitation, temperature and vapor pressure deficit. Tellus B 57: 164-173.

· Tambussi E.A., Nogués S., Ferrio P., Voltas J., Araus J.L. 2005. Does higher yield potential improve barley performance in Mediterranean conditions?: A case study. Field Crops Research 91(2-3):140-160

· Ferrio J.P., Araus J.L., Buxó R., Voltas J., Bort J. 2005. Water management practices and climate in ancient agriculture: inference from the stable isotope composition of archaeobotanical remains. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany 14:510-517

· Voltas J., Borrás G., López-Córcoles H. 2004. Use of biplot analysis and factorial regression for the investigation of superior genotypes in multi-environment trials. European Journal of Agronomy 22: 309-324.

· Ferrio J.P, Alonso N., Voltas J., Araus J.L. 2004.Estimating grain weight in archaeological cereal crops: a quantitative approach for comparison with current conditions. Journal of Archaeological Science 31:1635-1642

· Malosetti M., Voltas J., Romagosa I., Ullrich S., van Eeuwijk F.A. 2004. Mixed models including variables for studying QTL by environment interaction. Euphytica 137: 139-145.

· Aletá N., Ninot A., Voltas J. 2004. Retrospective evaluation of early selection of Juglans regia L. in nursery tests using a mixed model analysis. Silvae Genetica 56: 23-33.

· Ferrio J.P., Bort J., Voltas J., Araus J.L. 2004. Past climate and agricultural water management in the Mediterranean inferred from carbon isotope discrimination in archaeological plant remains. Options Mediterranéennes 48:289-296

· Ferrio J.P., Florit A., Vega A., Serrano L., Voltas J. 2003. D13C and tree-ring width reflect different drought responses in Quercus ilex and Pinus halepensis. Oecologia 442: 512-518.

Avda Alcalde Rovira Roure, 191. 25198 Lleida