Initiative for Biology (i-Bio)
For interdisciplinary research in Biology

In the past 20 years, major discoveries in biology have benefited from key conceptual and technological breakthroughs from mathematics, physics, chemistry, engineering and computer science. New methods and approaches, such as those relying on progress in optics and the use of fluorescent proteins, allow us to probe with unprecedented spatial and temporal resolution how entire living organisms develop, function and adapt to their environment. Thus biological research is now quantitative, integrative and predictive through links between all levels, from the whole living organism down to its molecular constituents. Nevertheless, understanding how interactions between the components of living organisms and their environment lead to the emergence of new properties and behaviors remains a major challenge that now, more than ever, requires transdisciplinary approaches. 

The i-Bio initiative of Sorbonne University Alliance is part of this research dynamic. It aims to promote the exploration of fundamental biological questions through the application of approaches and/or concepts from other disciplines, such as from mathematics, physics, chemistry, engineering and computer science.

i-Bio brings together about 60 research teams addressing fundamental questions in biology related to 4 major fields of exploration:

  • Evolution, biodiversity and super-organisms
  • Stochasticity and robustness in biological processes
  • Adaptation, learning, plasticity
  • Emergence and dynamics of biological networks

i-Bio research teams are affiliated with the Institut de Biologie Paris-Seine and the Institut du Fer à Moulin at Sorbonne University, within the outstanding scientific environment of the Pierre & Marie Curie campus.

i-Bio includes several actions:

  • a three-year PhD program,
  • support for collaborative and interdisciplinary research,
  • start-up packages for new teams,
  • scientific animation through seminars, symposia and summer schools.