International PhD Program, University of Basel, Switzerland

The International PhD Program


The Biozentrum of the University of Basel provides an internationally renowned
research environment for Molecular Biology studies with three focal areas (Infection
Biology, Growth and Development, Neurobiology) and two core programs (Structural
Biology & Biophysics and Genome Scale Biology & Bioinformatics) dedicated to basic
molecular and biomedical research and advanced training. The institute cultivates a
lively and interactive educational atmosphere having trained hundreds of successful
young scientists at the postgraduate and postdoctoral levels.

The international PhD program represents the flagship of the Biozentrum’s longstanding
commitment to first class training and education. It offers dedicated
teaching programs, high quality research experience, and generous financial support.
Excellent students can apply for a prestigious Fellowship Werner-Siemens

Basel is an international centre for biology research, with major academic institutions
and research departments of leading life science companies. Basel is rich in culture
and being located in north-western Switzerland directly bordering to France and
Germany, is an excellent starting point to explore Switzerland and the neighbouring

The Biozentrum International PhD Program provides advanced, interdisciplinary
training in Molecular Biology and its associated scientific disciplines. University
graduates admitted into the Program (“PhD students”) receive theoretical and
practical training, and conduct a research project under the supervision of a
Biozentrum faculty member, monitored by a Thesis Advisory Committee. After the
successful completion of his/her research project, the PhD student submits a written
thesis. Following Committee approval of the thesis and successful completion of an
oral examination, the candidate receives the degree of “PhD” from the University of

Admission is competitive and is achieved through a selection procedure. Applicants
must hold, or anticipate receiving before enrolment, a university degree that would
formally qualify them to enter a PhD or equivalent program in their home country
(MSc., Diploma, DEA etc.).

PhD at the Biozentrum

The Biozentrum has excellent technical resources and a broad interdisciplinary
research program in Molecular Biology. Outstanding training opportunities are
available for predoctoral students who can learn highly advanced techniques from
specialists and are introduced into the experimental analysis at multiple levels of
biological organization.
A rich program of courses, lectures, workshops and conferences organized at the
Biozentrum are offered to the students. As part of their education PhD students are
required to attend courses selected from the graduate teaching program. PhD fellows
will also attend yearly scientific meetings and will have the opportunity to organize
seminar series and career guidance events.


General requirements
To be accepted for graduate studies at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel,
applicants must hold a university degree that would formally qualify them to enter a
PhD or equivalent program in their home country (MSc., Diploma, DEA etc.).
Students can either apply to the PhD program by contacting group leaders of the
Biozentrum directly or can apply for one of the prestigious Fellowship Werner

The Biozentrum of the University of Basel together with the Friedrich Miescher
Institue (FMI), the Center of Biosystems Science and Engineering (C-BSSE) of the
ETH, and the Swiss Tropical Institute (STI) offer an international and interdisciplinary
molecular biology graduate teaching program in the areas of infection biology,
neurobiology, cell biology, developmental biology, biophysical chemistry, structural
biology, systems biology, and bioinformatics.

The program includes lecture series, exercises and courses, is designed for the
Master and PhD level, and integrates into the international credit point system.


Excellent students from all over the world are encouraged to apply for a prestigious Werner Siemens-Foundation fellowship. The aim of the fellowships is to select and promote highly talented graduate students in the area of Life Sciences. The fellowships offer direct access to the PhD program, generous financial support, a rotation-based selection of the research group, and support for the attendance of scientific meetings and courses during the PhD.

Selection process and timeline 2010
February: Start of online application

30th June: Application deadline
End of July: Notification/invitation of shortlisted candidates
23. – 27.8.2010: Interview week in Basel
The Werner Siemens-Foundation with domicile in Zug (Switzerland), supports private
and public institutions in the areas of education, science, health, nature, culture,
youth support, as well as charities in Switzerland and abroad.

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