IPB staff members
The Leibniz Institute of Plant Biochemistry (IPB) has on average 100 research associates, (incl. scholarship holders) and approximately 80 employees in administration and infrastructure as well as press and public relations. In addition student and research assistants are continuously working at the institute. Approximately 20 percent of the institute’s researchers (incl. scholarship holders) are from abroad, mainly from non-EU countries.
More than 50 per cent of the IPB employees (incl. scholarship holders) are female. The proportion of women among research associates is 40 per cent. In this context, the institute was awarded the Total Equality Seal for the first time in 2010, and was continually re-certificated, currently until in 2018. The institute will continue and intensify its efforts to employ women in leading positions.
Promotion of young researchers
IPB researchers are intensively involved in teaching at Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and Hochschule Anhalt (UAS) in Köthen. PhD candidates at the institute, bachelor and master students as well as student and research assistants are fully integrated into the institute's research projects. PhD students at the institute receive additional support under an IPB-specific framework program. Postdocs at the IPB are given early on autonomous research opportunities. The institute is home to two ‘Junior research groups’. In addition, several research groups at department level are headed by young researchers.
Qualification of non-academic staff members
The institute provides a large variety of training opportunities to young people after school in administrative, technical/scientific and gardening fields. Multi-faceted advancement programs are available to all institute members, also during parental leave.
National cooperation schemes
As part of our research work we are cooperating with numerous German and foreign universities, research institutions and businesses. Our main domestic university cooperation partner is MLU. The IPB is involved in management of Wissenschaftscampus Halle (WCH) ‘Plant-Based Bioeconomy’ and acts a coordinator of the Leibniz Research Alliance ‘Active substances and biotechnology’. We participate in DFG CRC 648 ‘Molecular mechanisms of information processing in plants’, DFG Priority Program 1212 ‘Plant Micro’ and DFG Research Centre on Biodiversity – DFG Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiV). Long-standing cooperations exist with the Interdisciplinary Centre for Crop Plant Research (IZN), with Agrochemical Institute Piesteritz (AIP) and with the BMBF Program GABI Plant 2030.
EU and international cooperation schemes
The IPB participates in the EU consortia TERMED and BIONEXGEN as well as in the EU COST Action ‘Plant Engine’ and the COSMOS project. This year, a junior IPB researcher filed a first application for an ERC Starting Grant.
The IPB has always been internationally oriented in order to identify the best cooperation partners and staff members but also to ensure a local basis and expertise for its work on natural products. We have been cooperating, for instance, for decades with the Vietnamese Academy of Sciences and Technology while partnerships with research institutions in Brazil and Cuba are increasingly gaining importance. Numerous staff members from those and other countries, visiting professorships, publications and PhD thesis projects confirm the success of the IPB’s international commitment.
The IPB does not offer pure contract services. However, research findings, collections and programs are made available internally, to cooperation partners, and where possible, also to the broad public. First databases and informatic tools are accessible via our homepage. In the framework of collaborations and ERDF projects we predominantly support local businesses with our methodological competence in the fields of spectroscopy and chromatography, microscopy as well as informatics and modelling.
Transfer of knowledge and technology
Accomplishments of fundamental research performed at the IPB frequently have the potential of becoming bases of commercially interesting developments. The IPB supports start-up companies financially to a limited extent, when services, that are required for marketing cannot be provided by the departments. Its own property rights are initially offered by the IPB to contractual or potentially strategic partners, preferably in our region. Our central partner for commercialisation and external evaluation of inventions, other than in cooperation schemes, is ESA Patentverwertungsagentur. Businesses that were started up by former institute members have asserted themselves successfully in the market for years.