International CEPLAS/IPK Summer School 2022

Translational Plant Biodiversity Research

May 9-13, 2022, Kloster Steinfeld, Kall-Steinfeld, Germany

Plant research is of enormous strategic importance to enable the scientifically, socially, and politically demanded transformation of agricultural production. To adapt crops to future requirements, such as climate change and limited resources, it is crucial to understand the functional consequences of biological diversity, which is defined by genetic and epigenetic variation in genomes, on trait performance and adaptation. IPK (Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research) and CEPLAS (Cluster of Excellence on Plant Sciences) are two major centres of plant research that work together on strengthening translational biodiversity research, from fundamental discoveries to innovation.

The IPK/CEPLAS Summer School is dedicated to PhD students and early postdoctoral researchers. Learn about the most recent developments in plant translational biodiversity research and the exciting research conducted in CEPLAS and IPK, explore science related topics in challenging workshops. You will have the opportunity to present your results to a wide scientific audience and build your professional network by engaging with early-career and internationally renowned plant scientists. We will also celebrate the 200th anniversary of Gregor Mendel´s birth.

Additionally, the competence area “Food Security” of the University of Cologne offers a special workshop on global food security with enriching discussions on current challenges to achieve and sustain food security.

Workshop Topics

Within the registration form, you can choose between the 3 workshops listed below:

  • Resilience for Scientists
    • Resilient Mind I Mind Elevators
  • Publishing
    • The Publishing System I Mary Williams
  • Self-Presentation
    • Pitch like a CHAMP I Mind Elevators


PhD students and first year postdocs in plant sciences are invited to apply. Applications to the CEPLAS/IPK Summer School are assessed on the basis of an abstract of your research project, a short motivation statement and your CV. All successful applicants are also required to present their project. A number of projects will be selected for a short talk. All other successful applicants are required to present a poster.

How to apply

Applicants are required to register. After successful registration the applicant will receive an email with the request to submit an abstract of the research project, a short motivation statement and a CV.
Applicants will be selected by the CEPLAS/IPK Summer School Committee.

Please be sure before applying that your visa and vaccination status will allow you to travel to Germany and attend the event.

You can find the latest information on entry requirements on the website of the Federal Foreign Office.

Please note that due to the current regulation, a proof of vaccination or recovery from COVID-19 or a negative test result is mandatory to attend the event at our location Kloster Steinfeld! Without such a proof we are unfortunately not allowed to accommodate you. Medical or FFP2 masks are still mandatory in all indoor rooms at the university.


Application deadline: 17 March 2022

Notification of participation, acceptance regarding talk/poster and travel grant: 25 March 2022

After the notification of acceptance by the organizing committee the applicant has to confirm the participation by Email until 01 April 2022.


The conference hotel “Kloster Steinfeld” is situated in a quiet and idyllic location in the region Eifel nearby Cologne. The transfer from the University of Cologne to the "Kloster Steinfeld" and back will be provided. The guesthouse offers comfortable rooms in the historical flair of the old monastery.

We start the program on Monday, May 9, at noon with a guided tour through CEPLAS labs and facilities at the University of Cologne. If you would like to take the opportunity to visit the metropolis Cologne at the weekend, please click here for more information. 


The Summer School fee for PhD students/first year postdocs is EUR 80.

The fee includes the complete summer school program, full board, single room accommodation at the conference hotel “Kloster Steinfeld” from 9th to 13th May 2022 and the transfer from the University of Cologne to the conference location and back. Travel costs are not included. Arrival at the University of Cologne must be organized by the participants.

Payment instructions will be provided with the notification of acceptance.

Travel Awards

We award a number of Travel Grants to support students. To apply for the grant, you need to indicate the respective grant in the registration form.

  • Two grants will be provided to support young researchers from developing or emerging countries (up to 1500 Euro).
  • Three grants will be awarded to excellent female scientists (up to 1500 Euro).
  • If required travel expenses of students travelling from abroad might be subsidized (100 Euro subsidy plus free registration fee).

Register here

Registration closed

Organizing Committee

  • Jens Freitag
  • Stanislav Kopriva
  • Ernesto Llamas
  • Daniela Ristova
  • Nicolaus von Wirén
  • CEPLAS Office


Organizing Committee


Institute for Plant Sciences

Zülpicher Straße 47b

50674 Cologne

Heinrich Heine University
University of Cologne
Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research
Forschungszentrum Jülich