The Bees Fund

The consequences of the decline of bees are huge. Bees are an important link in the pollination of plants, including many agricultural crops. The loss of bees could eventually lead to food shortages and ecological imbalances. High time, therefore, to shift up a gear and develop new methods and solutions that will enable us to turn the tide.Bij op bloem

New agricultural techniques in the 1950s, and subsequently (early 1980s) the introduction of the varroamite, confronted beekeeping with the issue of bee mortality for the first time. Scientific studies revealed that wild bees are also threatened, with a sharp decline in species diversity as a consequence. Meanwhile, there is strong social awareness and bees are even identified with biodiversity loss.

Better understanding the exact mechanisms behind the decline of bees is part of recent scientific research. The Bees Fund supports Ghent University's bee research within the Faculty of Sciences, the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.

A donation to the Bee Fund?

Koningin op raatYour gift to the Bees Fund contributes to the multidisciplinary research at Ghent University into various aspects of bees and other pollinators.

A donation of 100 euros, for example, is used to check an apiary for viruses and bacteria that can later be linked to bee mortality. With a donation of 500 euros, we can equip a hive with numerous sensors that continuously transmit data to a "cloud" so that we can monitor the hive without disturbing it. With a donation of 1.000 euros, we can monitor 3 bee stands for a whole year for harmful chemicals such as pesticides which can later be linked to bee mortality.

I would like to donate online

Your donation to the Bee Fund is also welcome on the account number BE26 3900 9658 0329, stating "bees fund" or " WE_1018". Your donation is tax-deductible in Belgium from 40 euros on an annual basis.

The Eva Crane Trust is pleased to be the first to support the Ghent University Bees Fund. Dr Eva Crane, whose name our charity bears, was herself a leading bee researcher who in the post-war period devoted herself, among other things, to collecting and disseminating all the information she could find on bees. She fulfilled the role of Google avant la lettre, so to speak. We are sure that she would be completely in tune with the objectives and ambitions of the Fund for Bees. (Richard Jones, chairman of the Eva Crane Trust, November 2022)

Why your donation makes a difference?

Read how the Bees Fund helped make the appointment of a beekeeper from Ukraine possible.

More info on the fund?Imker Olexiy Lyamtsev

Background info

The Bee Fund was founded in 2022 by three Ghent University researchers from different faculties, each in their own way researching bees and other pollinators. The Eva Crane Trust from the UK, provided the initial capital, which is used to manage a unique collection of beekeeping objects and to pay for the appointment of a Ukrainian beekeeper.


The aim of the Fund is to provide financial support for research on various aspects around bees and other pollinators. Research areas around bees and other pollinators can include, amongst others:

  • Research on the biology, ethology and ecology of bees, wild bees and other pollinators (including honeybees, bumblebees, solitary bees, stingless bees, hoverflies);
  • Research on the causes of bee mortality and improvement of beekeeping (including varroamites, food supply, pesticide residues, management, selection, resilience);
  • Research on the causes of the decline of our wild bees and pollinators (including environment/habitat, pesticides, diseases, food and nest supply, agriculture, urbanisation, global warming);
  • Research on pollination by bees, wild bees and pollinators, in agriculture and nature;
  • Research to support conservation and management of our bees, wild bees and pollinators, in the fight against their decline specifically and biodiversity loss in general;
  • Research on and to improve bee health, with a particular focus on infections, immunity and microbiome interactions;
  • Research on the social impact and/or interaction with humans of bees and other pollinators, with or without a historical perspective;
  • Support to young researchers in finishing their masters and/or PhD thesis at Ghent University, dealing with research on bees and other pollinators as described above;
  • Outreach and communication to promote research on bees and other pollinators.

More info on the research?

What else can I do?

Contact us

Do you have questions about this or any of the other Ghent University funds? Please get in touch and we will be happy to assist you.

University Fund of Ghent University
Wim Van der Planken
+32 9 264 33 84