Diederik Depla has received his Master Degree in chemistry in 1991 at Ghent University (Belgium). In 1996 he promoted with a PhD thesis in Solid State Chemistry on spray drying of precursors for superconductors. After a short period as Senior Scientist in the Department of Solid State Sciences, he became in 1999 Assistant Professor. As full Professor, he is now Head of the research group “Dedicated Research on Advanced Films and Targets (DRAFT)” in the same physics department. Two fundamental research questions has driven his research up till now. The first question is how deposition conditions influence film growth, while the second question probes for the impact of reactive gas addition on the magnetron process. Under his guidance, the research group “Dedicated Research on Advanced Films and Targets (DRAFT)” has distinguished itself from the traditional, technological approach, and has set its own course seeking for answers on the two above mentioned fundamental questions, translated in the mission statement of the group: “At DRAFT we want to become the recognized leader in the understanding of thin film growth by reactive magnetron sputtering, and to enjoy research by experiments and simulations”. This “target on growth” approach has resulted in several publications in peer reviewed papers. Diederik authored the book “Magnetrons, Reactive Gases and Sputtering”. He co-initiated in 2000 the successful RSD conference series. He received the Bill Sproul Award from AVS for “his persistence to unravel the fundamental processes during reactive magnetron sputtering.” More details on his research can be found on www.draft.ugent.be.