Weizmann Institute of Science and Max Planck Society Create a Joint Postdoctoral Program


The goal: to nurture a new generation of scientists by enabling them to embark on a four-year scientific exploration at the two institutions

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During a ceremony held at the Weizmann Institute of Science on Monday, May 15, 2023, Weizmann Institute President Prof. Alon Chen and Max Planck Society (MPG) President Prof. Martin Stratmann signed a cooperation agreement with the aim of deepening scientific collaboration and exchange between the two institutions, which enjoy a high reputation worldwide for their research achievements. The agreement involves creating a joint postdoctoral program, whose aim is to promote excellent young scientists and attract them to continue their cutting-edge research at both these institutions. 

Each year, up to ten postdocs will be accepted into the program in the fields of physics, chemistry, geosciences, and mathematics and computer science. After a successful pilot phase, the program will be expanded to include neuroscience. The funding will run for four years, with the postdocs spending two years at each institution, the Weizmann Institute and the respective Max Planck Institute. The program is financed equally by the Weizmann Institute and the MPG. The first application phase begins in July.

Says President Chen: “As someone who headed a joint research lab of the Weizmann Institute and the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich, I can testify first-hand to what extent the collaboration between our unique institutions constitutes an extraordinary scientific powerhouse. Now, with the new joint postdoctoral program that we initiated, we will extend this exceptional scientific opportunity to outstanding researchers who are at the beginning of their professional career.”

Close relations between the institutes

During his visit, President Stratmann was honored with the Weizmann Award in the Sciences and Humanities by President Chen, for his German-Israeli commitment and due to the excellent contacts of the MPG and the Minerva Foundation with research institutions in Israel.

“Today’s award ceremony is a testament to a small part of the much longer journey we have made,” Stratmann said in his speech. “I and the MPG also see the Weizmann Award as a commitment for the future. Indeed, we feel very connected to the Weizmann Institute in particular, and to Israeli science in general, and we will always stand proudly by your side.”