Melbourne-Potsdam PhD Programme (MelPoPP)

Melbourne-Potsdam PhD Programme (MelPoPP)

The Melbourne-Potsdam PhD Programme (MelPoPP) is an initiative between the University of Melbourne (UoM), Australia, the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology (MPI-MP) and the University of Potsdam (UP), Germany, that started in 2016. The programme creates an international research training opportunity for PhD students. The students spend time in Australia and Germany and will have the chance to get a joint PhD from the University of Melbourne and the University of Potsdam. For more information, please read on and explore the links.

Please note:
Recruitment for MelPoPP has ended. There will be no more application calls for MelPoPP joint projects. 


The Melbourne-Potsdam PhD Programme (MelPoPP) involves research groups at the University of Melbourne’s Schools of BioSciences, Chemistry, and Mathematics and Statistics, at the University of Potsdam’s Institute of Biochemistry and Biology, and at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology. PhD students in the programme have projects that are jointly supervised by group leaders in Melbourne and in Potsdam. The joint projects combine expertise at either institution that complement each other.

PhD candidates

MelPoPP is a sister programme of the IMPRS for Molecular Plant Science. Application for joint projects between group leaders at the MPI-MP and at the University of Melbourne was possible between 2016 and 2021, and six cohorts of PhD researchers joined MelPoPP. 

The following PhD researchers have projects within MelPoPP and pursue a Joint PhD degree between the University of Melbourne, Australia, and the University of Potsdam, Germany. 

Name Cohort
Jaqueline Nowak 2016 | Alumna; completed 2020
Lazar Novakovic 2016 | Alumnus; completed 2021
Jana Verbancic 2016 | Alumna; completed 2021
Joanna Kaptur 2016 | Alumna; completed 2021
Mike Ting 2017 | Alumnus; completed 2022
Michael Ogden 2017 | Alumnus; completed 2022
Alban Mariette 2018 | Alumnus; completed 2023
Federico Martinez Seidel 2018 | Alumnus; completed 2023
Orianne Montulet 2019 | active
Alina Ebert 2020 | active
Anna Philippova 2020 | active
Dione Gentry Torfer 2021 | active (project start in 2022)
Yunli Hsieh 2021 | active (project start in 2022)


Congratulations to our MelPoPP alumni for successfully completing their Joint PhD degree!

More details on the projects and profiles of PhD candidates pursuing a joint project between Melbourne and Potsdam can be found on the University of Melbourne's MelPoPP website.

About MelPoPP

Staffan Persson, who was Max Planck research group leader at the MPI-MP and faculty member of the IMPRS ‘Primary Metabolism and Plant Growth’, joined the University of Melbourne as Professor in 2015. To keep up his scientific ties with colleagues in Potsdam and to facilitate the establishment of new Australian-German collaborations, he initiated the Melbourne-Potsdam PhD Programme in 2016.

MelPoPP PhD research projects jointly supervised by group leaders in Melbourne and Potsdam were offered between 2016 and 2021. We recruited six cohorts of MelPoPP PhD researchers in a joint application and interview procedure with our IMPRS. Recruitment for MelPoPP ceased in 2021/2022.

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