The International Max Planck Research School on the Life Course (LIFE) is a joint international PhD Program of the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, the Freie Universität Berlin, the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, the University of Michigan, the University of Virginia, and the University of Zurich.

The goal of the Research School is the study of the systematic changes in human behavior over evolutionary and ontogenetic time. The general approach is aimed at advancing the behavioral and social science of human development. LIFE takes an integrative and interdisciplinary approach to understanding human development in a changing world, connecting evolutionary, ontogenetic, historical, and institutional perspectives. The focus is on the evolution and interaction of individual and institutional development.

The curriculum combines psychology, educational science, neuroscience, and biology, focussing especially on the dynamics of human behavior on different time scales.

Further Information

Go to LIFE Program to find out more about the International Max Planck Research School on the Life Course (LIFE).

For access to the internal website, click here.


Please find information about the application process here.

LIFE Co-Chairs

Ulman Lindenberger
MPI for Human Development

Clemens Tesch-Römer (Associate Co-Chair)
Freie Universität Berlin

Toni C. Antonucci
University of Michigan

Patricia A. Reuter-Lorenz 
(Associate Co-Chair)
University of Michigan

Steven M. Boker
University of Virginia

Angeline S. Lillard
(Associate Co-Chair)
University of Virginia

Alexandra M. Freund
University of Zurich