About Us

Welcome from the Founding Director

When the Max Planck Society decided to establish the new MPI for Software Systems in 2004, I was intrigued by the opportunity to create a basic research institution focused on software systems in the Max Planck Society's tradition of excellence. In time, a unique vision emerged for the institute to

  • attract some of the best talents internationally and provide them with excellent resources and an environment that encourages collaboration and out-of-box thinking;
  • pursue cutting-edge research in a diverse team that includes theoretical, empirical, and data-driven approaches, core computer science and interdisciplinary aspects; and
  • train young scientists who combine excellence in their chosen specialty with a broad perspective on computer science and the ability to communicate their results effectively to a wide audience.

I am extremely proud of what the institute has achieved during its first decade. Independent research groups in complementary areas led by faculty at different tenure-track seniority levels, excellent doctoral and post-doctoral researchers, and frequent visits by external researchers contribute to a dynamic and highly collaborative organization. We work on some of the most exciting challenges in computing, from software verification and synthesis to secure and privacy-preserving systems, machine learning, and social media systems. The institute is well on its way to establishing itself as one of the leading CS research institutions in the world and I am very happy to have had the opportunity to participate in this journey.

Peter Druschel

Structure and Organization

The Max Planck Institute for Software Systems (MPI-SWS) is part of a network of over 80 institutes run by the Max Planck Society, Germany's premier basic research organization. MPIs have an established record of world-class, foundational research in the sciences, technology, and the humanities. Research in computer science is conducted at the MPI for Software Systems, the MPI for Informatics, and the MPI for Intelligent Systems, as well as a number of other MPIs.

MPIs are publicly funded and offer a unique environment that combines the best aspects of a university and a research laboratory: Academic freedom, institutional base funding, doctoral and postdoctoral research training, short- and long-term visiting researchers, outstanding technical infrastructure and administrative support.

The MPI for Software Systems is jointly led by its faculty, who also lead independent research groups. The institute continues to grow and offers tenured and tenure-track faculty positions to outstanding candidates at all levels. Selected junior candidates with strong potential have the opportunity to lead a research group for up to 5 years without the responsibilities of a faculty position. Moreover, the institute offers doctoral and post-doctoral research opportunities, as well as short- and long-term research positions for visitors and interns.

Scientific Advisory Board

Current Advisory Board members

Mark Crovella (Boston University)

Ashish Goel (Stanford University)

Gernot Heiser (University of New South Wales)

Joost-Pieter Katoen (RWTH Aachen University)

Orna Kupferman (Hebrew University)

Cecilia Mascolo (University of Cambridge)

Tulika Mitra (National University of Singapore)

Andrew Myers (Cornell University)

Andrew Pitts (University of Cambridge)

Willy Zwaenepoel (The University of Sydney)

Former Advisory Board Members

Rajeev Alur (University of Pennsylvania)

Jon Crowcroft (University of Cambridge)

David Culler (Berkeley)

Lise Getoor (UC Santa Cruz)

Tom Henzinger (IST Austria)

Barbara Liskov (MIT)

John Mitchell (Stanford University)

Greg Morrisett (Cornell University)

Dan Suciu (University of Washington)


Mailing address

Campus E1 4
D-66123 Saarbrücken

Physical address Saarbrücken

Campus E1 5
D-66123 Saarbrücken
Phone: +49 681 9303-9100
Fax: +49 681 9303-6029

Physical address Kaiserslautern

Paul-Ehrlich-Strasse, Building G 26
D-67663 Kaiserslautern
Phone: +49 631 9303-9600
Fax: +49 631 9303-6019