2024 Center for Brain & Disease Research International PhD Call



Leuven, Belgium


The VIB-KU Leuven Center for Brain & Disease Research is recruiting enthusiastic, creative, ambitious, and highly motivated Ph.D. candidates to join us starting autumn 2024!

Our different research groups explore how the brain and nervous system develops, ages, and functions in health and disease by bridging disciplines, from artificial intelligence, microelectronics, and nanoscience, to microfluidics, single-cell and molecular analysis, functional genomics, and cell biology in human cells and animal models.

Research Themes

The Center focuses on five research themes: 

  • Neuronal and neurodegenerative disease;
  • Brain development and repair;
  • Synapses, connections & behavior;
  • Toxic protein assemblies;
  • The brain at single-cell resolution.

Doing a Ph.D. at our Center

Embedded within both VIB and KU Leuven, we offer a unique Ph.D. experience with access to state-of-the-art facilities, expertise, and training. PhD students will have the opportunity to work together with internationally recognized scientists and develop their research projects in an innovative research environment. We also have a PhD Association, which organizes social activities, networking, and upskilling events, and an annual PhD Symposium.


To be considered for a PhD position, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Appropriate master’s or equivalent higher education degree;
  • Distinction (=cum laude) based on your study results or professional realizations;
  • Proficiency in oral and written English in accordance with the criteria of KU Leuven (more information available here).

Relevant experience (e.g., molecular biology, cellular physiology, neuroscience, animal behavior, computational methods, etc.) is a plus. Candidates from non-neuroscience fields but with a keen interest in understanding the brain (e.g. physics, artificial intelligence, engineering, humanities, and medical training) are also strongly encouraged to apply.


Submit your application which includes a:

  • CV;
  • Motivation letter describing your research interests, career goals, your fit with the Center, and how doing a PhD with us will help you work towards your future professional ambitions;
  • Digital copies of university transcripts (Bachelor’s and Master’s);
  • Contact information of three referees.

All applications will be reviewed by Principal Investigators at our Center. Shortlisted candidates will be notified by February 15th, and interviews will take place in person at our Center in the week of 3-7 June 2024. We will offer a travel budget for the visit.

Application deadline: January 15, 2024

For application inquiries, please contact hr.cbd@kuleuven.be or visit our dedicated Ph.D. Call webpage http://www.vib.be/cbdphdcall for more information.