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The International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) on Understanding Complex Plant Traits using Computational and Evolutionary Approaches is a local collaboration between the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research (MPIPZ) and the Universities in Cologne and Düsseldorf (Germany). The IMPRS has been established in 2002 and offers an international PhD programme in English. Students are closely supervised through an advisory committee, receive professional training in transferable and applicable skills and are supported to share their scientific insights.
Our common goal is to understand the molecular basis of complex traits that differ between plant species and confer novel phenotypic characteristics. Computational approaches have become an integral part of our research, reflected by a continuously growing number of related projects and groups. The advertised projects will be performed in the groups of Angela Hancock (, Andrea Fulgione & George Coupland ( and Stefan Laurent ( and applicants have the opportunity to indicate a preference in the online application process. 


You are a highly qualified and motivated student from any nationality with an MSc (or equivalent) degree in a related subject such as bioinformatics and population/quantitative genetics. You have a proved track record of academic and research excellence and are fluent in written and spoken English. Additionally, you have experience with one or more programming languages such as Python, Java, C/C++ and R. Applicants still studying should receive their degree not later than 5 months after the interview date in late April 2020.

We provide an excellent, international and interdisciplinary research environment with state-of-the-art facilities and a renowned faculty. Positions are fully funded for 3 years with possible extension. We are committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in the workforce and encourage applications from such qualified individuals. Further, we seek to increase the number of women in those areas where they are underrepresented and therefore explicitly encourage women to apply.


Apply by February 2nd 2020 at Only applications submitted through the online platform will be considered. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to the MPIPZ for interviews on March April 21-24th 2020. Successful candidates will start their positions preferably on October 1st 2020.


Dr. Stephan Wagner (IMPRS co-ordinator) at Diese E-Mail-Adresse ist vor Spambots geschützt! Zur Anzeige muss JavaScript eingeschaltet sein!

Apply online via and find additional information at

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