PhD Diploma at Nencki Institute


Cooperation with excellent neurobiologists, molecular biologists and biochemists. Scholarships for all doctoral students. Trips to conferences abroad. Emphasis on ambitious experiments, with lectures limited as much as possible.

In short, this is how the path to PhD title at the Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology at the Polish Academy of Sciences looks like. Nencki Institute is a prestigious institution with the highest A+ category awarded by the Ministry of Science.


“We have excellently equipped laboratories, strong support for experiments, and staff recognized in the whole world”, says professor Daniel Wójcik, head of doctoral studies at the Institute. “Our students are admitted to internships, where they develop their competences”, he emphasizes.

In addition, for persons interested in the broadly understood biology, brain research, biochemistry and molecular biology, Nencki Institute can be the perfect place to pursuit their scientific ambitions.


How are the studies organized?
A candidate for a future doctor must be a graduate of masters or equivalent studies, or a laureate of the Diamond Grant. The recruitment committee appreciates ambition, commitment to scientific work and knowledge of the field chosen by the candidate. Studies take four years. In justified cases, this period can be extended to five years. Studies are free. Young scientists can participate in English classes, and foreign students – in Polish classes. The Institute helps interested persons prepare grant applications.

At the end of each year, a doctoral student prepares a report – a presentation of results achieved in the last year. In order to pursue a doctoral dissertation, the student must be an author or co-author of a scientific publication, published or accepted for printing by a reviewed magazine. In order to complete the studies, one must pass an exam in the major area as well as in philosophy and statistics.


Career possibilities
Professor Daniel Wójcik points out that graduates of doctoral studies at Nencki Institute easily find jobs. They can continue their scientific career, but also, they often work for the industry. What does it look like in practice?

“All of the six doctoral students supervised by me were offered jobs they wanted”, says professor. “Four of them chose science and are still working in this field, as post-doctoral interns at Nencki, in Barcelona, Melbourne and Oxford. Two persons went to the research department in Samsung, one started later their own business”.

He adds that professional paths of all graduates have a common denominator, resulting from the mission of the Institute of Experimental Biology, that is the pursuit of excellence in conducted research, the results of which can be applied in the context of social needs to improve the quality of life. Young specialists continue their work according to this mission, for example in the pharmaceutical sector in manufacturing of new drugs or generic substances. Thanks to clinical tests, they help introduce new medical treatments on the market. 


Laboratories, the Animal House, Hydrobiological Station
There are 40 excellently equipped research laboratories at Nencki Institute, among others the Laboratory of Neuroinformatics, the Laboratory of Spatial Memory, or the Laboratory of Molecular Bases of Ageing. In the newly opened Neurobiology Centre, there are five “core facility” laboratories, among others, the Laboratory of Brain Imaging, the Laboratory of Animal Models, or Laboratory of Molecular Neurobiology. Other units of the Institute include the Animal House, the Laboratory of Electron Microscopy, the Laboratory of Cytometry, and the Hydrobiological Station.


Marceli Nencki
The patron of the institution was a 19th century distinguished scientist, a doctor specializing in bacteriology, epidemiology and organic chemistry.

“At school, he was initially average, and developed fully only during studies”, admits professor Daniel Wójcik. “This, however, did not prevent his successful research career. His example shows how important passion and work are for scientific development. Marceli Nencki got interested in biology during his studies of philosophy”, he says. 

Marceli Nencki was a student of the Faculty of Philosophy at the Jagiellonian University. Later, as a scientists, he was tied to the Department of Physiological Chemistry at the Bern University in Switzerland.

The Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology at the Polish Academy of Sciences was founded in 1918

Prof. dr hab. Daniel K. Wójcik
Head of the PhD Studies

Prof. Daniel K. Wójcik


PhD Studies Office
mgr Karolina Wysowska, mgr Diana Szymańska
tel: +48 22 5892554

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