Doctroal Student (m/f/div)

in Advanced Manufacturing of Functional Material at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems

A new research group at the MPI-IS in Stuttgart led by Dr. Florian Hartmann is looking for several doctoral students, starting from March 1st, 2024. We are interested in combining materials innovation with robotic technologies to engineer functional material systems that address societal challenges in healthcare, resource availability, and climate change. A core mission of the lab is to establish widely applicable manufacturing routes to generate materials with engineered behavior. To this end, we will develop manufacturing strategies that combine antagonistic material properties to form material architectures with new functionalities. We will deploy these materials in sustainable technologies that can biodegrade after use or build autonomous robotic systems inspired by nature’s diversity.

The positions will be broadly in the area of advanced manufacturing of polymers and soft robotics. Some research directions that we are interested in exploring within this domain are:

  1. Sustainable materials and technologies – Material-driven solutions for biodegradable electronics and robotics
  2. Soft robotic systems – Small-scale transducers and integrated systems capable of locomotion
    1. Multi-material additive manufacturing – Engineering-driven approaches for multi-material systems via additive manufacturing
      1. Solid-liquid composites – physics-driven strategies to combine solids and liquids to make new functional materials

          The specific directions of the individual position will be determined jointly with the candidate and will be in part based on the expertise and interests of the candidate. One candidate will not be working on all the research directions listed above.

          The Max-Planck Society is committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified individuals. The Max Planck Society strives for gender equality and diversity. Furthermore, the Max Planck Society seeks to increase the number of women in those areas where they are underrepresented and therefore explicitly encourages women to apply.

          Candidate Profile:

          • Bachelor’s and/or Master’s degree in materials science, mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, physics, mechatronics, or a related field
          • Experience with materials characterization
          • Experience with bio-materials, polymers, or fluidics is an advantage
          • Excellent communication skills in English (written and spoken)
          • Interest in materials development, additive manufacturing, and building prototypes
          • Interest in interdisciplinary research
          • Interest in outfitting a new research lab

          We offer:

          • An international, multidisciplinary, and highly motivating working environment
          • Extensive mentoring, supervision, and career planning opportunities
          • Collaborations with world-leading research groups at MPI-IS and beyond
          • Network opportunities through conferences, seminars, and research visits
          • Competitive salaries and fully funded positions
          • Financial contribution to the job ticket (ÖPNV)
            • Possibility of mobile working

              The PhD student will receive a PhD funding contract equivalent in remuneration to pay group E13, 75% of the Public Service Wage Agreement (TVöD-Bund) guidelines.

              Expected start dates and durations:

              The preferred start date will be March 1st, 2024. A doctoral student position is fully funded. An initial contract will be offered for 3 years, possibly extending up to 5 years.

              Your application:

              Applications should include a curriculum vitae, a cover letter (no more than one page), and contact information for 2-3 references. We encourage you to use the cover letter to tell us which research direction you are interested in, why you are interested in it, and how your prior experiences (research and others) have prepared you for it.

                Review of applications will start in December 2023. The application deadline is January 21st, 2024. The positions will be open until filled. Applications that do not receive a response by February 1st, 2024 are no further considered.

                For further information about the position, please contact Dr. Florian Hartmann (

                IMPRS-IS Doctoral School:

                In addition to this application, applicants are encouraged to apply for the International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) for Intelligent Systems. Applications for IMPRS-IS are handled independently. The application deadline for IMPRS-IS is November 15th, 2023. For further information visit:

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