Darwinian Chemistry Doctoral Network

Darwinian evolution is unrivalled in its ability to invent, which Humankind has already exploited for various purposes such as plant and animal breeding and directed evolution of proteins. In these examples, evolution acts on living species or material derived from them, but so far it has not been possible to apply Darwinian evolution outside the realm of biological and some computational systems. The aim of the DarChemDN research programme is to develop, for the first time, synthetic chemical systems that can undergo Darwinian evolution.



Darwinian Evolution

Evolution by natural selection. Darwinian evolution requires units that self-replicate, have heredity and variability. Hereditary traits affect the chance of reproduction and /or survival.

Systems Chemistry

The chemical sub-discipline of properties that emerge from mixtures of interacting molecules with a focus on the analysis and synthesis of various autocatalytic sys-tems and their couplings.


Our research couples systems chemistry, biophysics, and theoretical evolutionary biology with know-how in microfluidics, mass spectrometry, and advanced computational methods.


Our network-wide training programme will complement the doctoral candidates’ local training by offering access to various multi-disciplinary training events and dedicated workshops.

Open Positions

The proposed research will be conducted by 10 Doctoral Candidates (DCs) hosted and supervised by our beneficiaries. 

The positions open on 1 September 2023. 


DarChemDN network