Vienna Area Doctoral Programs

Five doctoral schools from the Vienna region are collaborating to bring you the Doctoral Insights Symposium.  The Vienna region has an excellent range of high quality programs in the Life Sciences that attract many MSc students from throughout the world; check them out below.

The CeMM PhD Program focusses on the thematic areas of Infection, Immunity, Metabolism, Cancer, Rare Diseases, Network Medicine, and Design Chemistry. We are also increasingly interested in patient-derived organoids and aging research. These areas are built on the pillars of epigenetics and genome integrity, bioinformatics and systems biology, high-throughput genetics, genomics and proteomics, molecular and cell biology, high content automatic imaging, chemical biology, and organic chemical synthesis.

The program
Our goal is to enable and empower students with the ability to successfully design, execute, manage and explain a research project in modern molecular medicine, through a strongly participatory and interactive program. The program is conceptualized in three ‘modes’: collect, connect and contribute. These will guide you through scientific excellence in data generation and validation to responsible and professional scientific citizenship.

Institute of Science and Technology Austria (ISTA) is a cross-disciplinary research institution that combines basic science research with graduate education. Our scientists perform theoretical and experimental research in Mathematical and Physical Sciences, Life Sciences, and Information and System Sciences. They are organized in small to medium-size research groups that interact with each other across the boundaries of traditional disciplines. In 2019, ISTA was ranked #3 in the world-wide Nature Index ranking (normalized). In 2018, ISTA was ranked within the top ten of Nature Index Rising Stars “Top 30 academic institutions under 30” list.

We welcome Bachelor's and Master's students from diverse backgrounds such as Biology, Computer Science, Chemistry & Materials, Data Science & Scientific Computing, Mathematics, Neuroscience, and Physics, to apply for ISTA’s PhD and internship programs.

In the field of Life Sciences, faculty is working at the interface of theory and experiment, offering a broad range of research opportunities. Research groups operate in an interdisciplinary and collaborative environment, and employ multidisciplinary, quantitative approaches in molecular and developmental cell biology, structural biology and biochemistry, genomics, evolutionary biology, ecology, and neuroscience.

The Vienna BioCenter PhD Program mission is to promote interdisciplinary research in the Life Sciences at the highest level and to help excellent PhD students develop into tomorrow's leading scientists through a comprehensive training program. We believe in the power of interdisciplinary research to drive innovation and tackle complex scientific challenges, and we strive to create an environment that fosters collaboration and innovation.

The Vienna BioCenter is a world-class scientific research environment where students and group leaders from different backgrounds interact in an inter-disciplinary, open, and creative environment. By promoting the exchange of ideas and bringing together different and often complementary disciplines, they provide outstanding opportunities for ambitious and motivated students to advance their scientific careers.

The training program is designed to educate students in all areas relevant for a career in science, providing additional opportunities to acquire skills relevant for other career paths. We believe that scientific training should be comprehensive and prepare students for a wide range of future opportunities, whether in academia, industry, or beyond. In the program, you will have access to state-of-the-art facilities and be supervised by top scientists in the field, providing you with the resources and support you need to succeed. The campus is highly multidisciplinary, with research areas ranging from molecules to populations, ensuring that you have the opportunity to explore a wide range of topics.

The Vienna Doctoral School of Ecology and Evolution (VDSEE) is devoted to educating students on the ecology and evolution of extant and ancestral organisms, populations and communities. In Ecology, the focus is on understand the mechanistic and evolutionary drivers of patterns and processes from gene regulation to the structure and function of ecosystems and the impact of communities on the biogeochemical cycles and their adaptive capacity in response to environmental change. In Evolution, we address the processes leading to changes in organization and temporal dynamics of organisms, populations and species at the molecular, developmental, morphological and physiological level.

The disciplines within the VDSEE encompass a wide range of specialties, such as Archaea Biology, Marine Biology, Environmental Change and Biodiversity, Evolutionary Anthropology, Evolutionary Zoology and Palaeobiology, Limnology, Tropical Ecology, Molecular Evolution and Development, Molecular Systems Biology, Plant Evolutionary Biology, and Theoretical Evolutionary Biology.

The human environment and the earth’s ecosystems depend on cycles that are maintained by intricate relationships between microorganisms and the solid earth. These cycles are increasingly disturbed by human activity. A sustaining quality of life therefore requires a detailed understanding how microbes interact among each other and with other organisms, how they adapt to changing environments, how they influence energy, matter and information fluxes and how pollutants and nutrients influence microbial community function and human health.

Our doctoral program is unique in offering interdisciplinary training at the interfaces of microbiology, ecology, and environmental geosciences to address current challenges in the 21st century society, including the role of microbiomes, adaptation and resistance mechanisms, biogeochemistry, pollutant dynamics and nutrient fluxes in global change and for human, animal,  plant, and environmental health. Our students will acquire a comprehensive understanding of microbes at all levels, from molecular circuits determining the fate of single cells to microbial communities to ecosystem processes and of pollutant dynamics and nutrient and geochemical cycles. They are trained in the interdisciplinary environment at the Centre for Microbiology and Environmental Systems Science, which includes molecular microbiology, evolutionary and computational biology, and environmental sciences. Students have access to high-level infrastructure to study microbes, microbe-host interactions, and environmental processes at the forefront of fundamental and applied sciences.