DEB guide


DEB stands for Dynamic Energy Budget. "Dynamic" means that the full life cycle of an indivudual micro-organism, plant or animal is followed in a changing environment and "Budget" means that balances are respected explicitly. DEB theory not only deals with the processes of "Energy" uptake and use, but also with mass, including stoichiometric constraints and isotopes. Introductory information on DEB theory can be found on Wikipedia.

The DEB portal is a page for DEB-related issues. It informs about upcoming en past events (such as courses), the world-wide network on DEB-research, Add-my-Pet as one of the applications of DEB theory.

The DEB Laboratory is a site that points to the available DEB resources, such as code and education material.


A systematic account of the theory is given in the book DEB3 (Cambridge Univ Press, 3rd edition 2010), which corrected the errata found in the printed version. The rules for notation that are used, as well as the notation itself, are given in the notation document. Developments since 2010 and explanations of parts of the book are given in the comments to DEB3, which changes frequently. The summary of concepts presents the meaning the various concepts and their function in the theory. It has no formulae or biological observations and follows the section-structure of DEB3.

DEB library

An increasing number of papers summarises particular aspects of the theory, formal (axiom-based) and less formal (biology-based), introductory and more advanced, focussing on the standard model and more general, sub- and supra-organismic levels. References and pdf's can be found in the DEB library on Zotero. The site has the possibility to become Zotero member (no costs), which gives access to all pdf's

Journal issues on DEB theory:

Go to the DEB info page or the Theoretical Biology Home page