Since 2018, the Max Planck Schools have brought together Germany’s leading scientists
in three growing research fields – Cognition, Matter to Life, and Photonics – to train a new
generation of excellent and critical early-career researchers. As a joint graduate program
of German universities1 and research organizations2, the Max Planck Schools aim to
establish a flagship program for PhD training in Germany. The three Schools bring together
the brightest minds in their respective fields as so-called “Fellows” to train internationally
outstanding young scientists within the framework of a structured PhD program.
Fellows of the Max Planck Schools are appointed by the Presidents of the Max Planck
Society and the German Rector’s Conference. Their main responsibilities are the
supervision and scientific as well as personal support of ambitious and promising PhD
candidates. Moreover, Fellows advance their respective Max Planck School by
Generating new research topics;
Supporting selection procedures of PhD candidates;
Facilitating the personal development of PhD candidates;
Contributing to curriculum development and implementation;
Further developing the concept of the respective Max Planck School;
Promoting the overall idea of the Max Planck Schools.
For these tasks, Fellows will be appointed for four years3; a renewal of the appointment by
a subsequent application is possible. Currently, the three Max Planck Schools have a small
number of open Fellow positions. To become a Fellow, candidates should
Have their main affiliation at a German university or research institution;4
Demonstrate an internationally recognized scientific profile in one or more research
fields connected to Cognition, Matter to Life or Photonics;
Bring high levels of engagement to the support and advancement of young potentials
aiming for an international research career;
Demonstrate interest to contribute to a highly innovative graduate program with
international orientation and a lively scientific community across disciplinary,
organizational and local boundaries.
The Max Planck Society and the German Rectors’ Conference together with all its partners
seek to increase the number of women in those areas where they are underrepresented
and therefore explicitly encourage women to apply.
We are looking forward to your application by October 13, 2022 via our online portal.
You can find further information on the Max Planck Schools at www.maxplanckschools.org.
1 Key partner universities of the pilot phase are: Friedrich Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg
(FAU), Friedrich Schiller University Jena, University of Göttingen, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf
(HHU), Humboldt University of Berlin, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Technical University of
Munich (TUM), Heidelberg University and Leipzig University.
2 Max Planck Society, Fraunhofer Society, Helmholtz Association and Leibniz Association.
3 Subject to a continuation of the Max Planck Schools beyond the end of the pilot phase (30.09.2025).
4 In a capacity that enables them to receive public research funding.