IGS BioNanoTech

International Graduate School Bio-Nano-Technology

Within the framework of a doctoral program in natural sciences, the International Graduate School Bio-Nano-Technology (IGS-BioNanoTech) offers training in applied and basic research in the field of bionanotechnology in an international environment. The Austrian partner institutions in this binational research and education program are the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, (BOKU), and the Vienna-based AIT Austrian Institute of Technology. The Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and Institutes of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*Star) are their Singapore counterparts. The program also strives to integrate other Vienna Universities, as well as the University of Salzburg and the Paracelsus Medical University Salzburg.

BOKU and AIT students participate in research projects led jointly by scientists from Austria and Singapore. In general, students spend three years working on their dissertations at one (or several) of the participating institutes in Vienna and spend at least one year in Singapore, where they conduct experiments as part of their research projects and take part in the academic life of the NTU and the A*Star institutes. Likewise, students from Singapore are tutored by scientists from both the NTU and A*Star institutes and a partner group at the BOKU and AIT and live in Austria for at least one year. This way, all students participating in the program get an in-depth view of the academic, social, cultural and historic background of their host countries.

By adopting this approach, IGS-BioNanoTech accomplishes a paradigm shift as it not only educates students in multi-disciplinary research projects, but also teaches them how to excel in a globalized world and to learn to deal with the complexity of modern research and innovation challenges at an international level. At IGSBioNanoTech, we aim to provide our students with the know-how and skills of leading experts in technology who are ideally prepared to work in a global network. At the same time, we want to give students an understanding of the education-related, cultural and ethical differences between countries that in the future will grow together more closely and create a global market.

Professors and lecturers from both countries will hold seminars, practical training courses and lab modules for the students of the respective partner country, thus intensifying training within the scope of the specific educational goals set by the IGS. This way, all students will benefit from lectures given by speakers from both countries sharing their competence and knowledge in their special fields of bionanotechnology. We expect students to increase their competencies and know-how within their educational fields. Another aspect of the educational modules offered by the IGS-BioNanoTech are courses in complementary subjects, for instance entrepreneurship in cooperation with tecnet. The program is scheduled to run up to nine years (three generations of PhD students) and to have a total number of 20–30 participants at most. About one third of the students will receive scholarships from the IGS. The remaining students will attend the educational modules and will be integrated into the scientific program through their research projects, but will receive funding from other sources.

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