The Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology investigates ecological interactions with molecular, chemical and neurobiological techniques. Chemical Ecology examines the role of chemical signals that mediate the interactions between plants, animals, and their environment, as well as the evolutionary and behavioral consequences of these interactions. In the Institute, organic chemists, biochemists, ecologists, entomologists, behavioral scientists, insect geneticists and physiologists work in collaboration to unravel the complexity of chemical communication that occurs in nature. [more]

Currently, five Departments -  Evolutionary Neuroethology, Biochemistry, Insect Symbiosis, Natural Product Biosynthesis and Molecular Ecology - build the core research areas of the Institute.

Facts about the Institute

It was founded by the Max Planck Society in March 1996. The Thuringian town of Jena was selected because it is home to the Friedrich-Schiller-University and many other research centers, making it an attractive scientific location. The establishment of the new institute building on the Beutenberg Campus with immediate proximity to other biological and  chemical institutes offers excellent potential for scientific co-operations and the establishment of networks.The institute attracts researchers from all over the world. At the moment it hosts scientists from 31 different countries.

In addition to the five directors who are heads of their departments, around 180 scientists including 75 PhD and about 10 graduate students do their research work here. Altogether, almost 340 persons are affiliated with the institute (updated: 2021).An important task of the institute is training young researchers in modern techniques of chemical ecology. In 2005 a special graduate program, the International Max Planck Research School, was established that offers the possibility for highly qualified young researchers to conduct their research in an international atmosphere.

The Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology is Member of