Background and activities


Research summary

Dr. Steven Vercruysse's research focuses on building a bridge between human and computer understanding.

His main work is a user-friendly language & tool (VSM) that helps scientists (like biologists) to manually collect and encode any kind of information from the scientific literature, into a computable form. In a single interface, one can capture diverse research findings, with full contextual details. One can represent any type of complex knowledge into a precise, computable, and easily-readable form.

Read more: introduction to VSM & SciCura, and blog-post on NTNU TechZone.

Research goals

  • To apply the VSM method to many more research areas where complex knowledge needs to be managed in a computable form.
  • To connect VSM to existing technologies: both to semantic, defeasible, automated reasoning; and to explainable machine learning.
  • To develop an interdisciplinary, open platform (SciCura) where scientists can transform the results of any scientific publication into a computation-ready form. (Like a Wikipedia, where each page corresponds to a research paper, but showing all its new findings in a form that is both human- and computer-understandable).
    This forms the basis for automated reasoning assistance over large-scale, real-world knowledge; i.e. a digital brain to address society's most intricate problems, which involve complex systems (like cancer, brain, climate, security).


We look for new partnerships and funding for this broadly applicable knowledge-capturing method. The technology can definitely facilitate the many projects where it is essential to collect and integrate computable knowledge.

Additional use-cases also serve as inspiration to mature VSM and fulfill its potential for global applicability.


  • Affiliate Researcher - 2020-...
  • Researcher at NTNU - 2016-'19
    • Visiting Researcher at UC Berkeley / Berkeley Lab - 2019
  • Affiliate Researcher - 2011-'14
  • Postdoc at NTNU - 2008-'11


  • Full-Stack Web Development (JS, AWS) - 2015
  • PhD in Biotechnology (Computational Biology) at Ghent University - 2008
  • MSc in Computer Science - 2002
  • MSc in Physics - 2000



Scientific, academic and artistic work

Displaying a selection of activities. See all publications in the database


  • Touré, Vasundra; Vercruysse, Steven; Acencio, Marcio Luis; Lovering, Ruth C.; Orchard, Sandra; Bradley, Glyn; Casals-Casas, Cristina; Chaouiya, Claudine; del-Toro, Noemi; Flobak, Åsmund; Gaudet, Pascale; Hermjakob, Henning; Hoyt, Charles Tapley; Licata, Luana; Lægreid, Astrid; Mungall, Christopher; Niknejad, Anne; Panni, Simona; Perfetto, Livia; Porras, Pablo; Pratt, Dexter; Saez-Rodriguez, Julio; Thieffry, Denis; Thomas, Paul; Türei, Dénes; Kuiper, Martin. (2020) The Minimum Information about a Molecular Interaction Causal Statement (MI2CAST). Bioinformatics.


  • Vercruysse, Steven. (2019) A bold vision for computable scientific knowledge. [Internett]. 2019-06-27.
  • Vercruysse, Steven. (2019) vsmjs: a GitHub project consisting of multiple modules, to capture knowledge with the VSM user-interface. GitHub, 2019.


  • Vercruysse, Steven; Kuiper, Martin. (2018) The VSM-pages: How to Easily Plant Complex Ideas into Computers.