About the CRI



The CRI is a convivial gathering place at the crossroads

of the life sciences and the exact, natural,

cognitive, and social sciences.




The CRI was founded in 2005 by Ariel Lindner and François Taddei, two life science researchers passionate about education, innovation and working across disciplines. What began in the coffee room as a weekly meeting of friends with similar interests grew to occupy an entire floor of the medical building, then to a 6000 m2 state-of-the-art research facility in the center of Paris.

Thanks to the major support of the Bettencourt Schueller Foundation and other partners, the CRI’s activities have diversified to include education from the primary school to the doctoral level and research in all areas of the life sciences.



Our mission is to transform the way people acquire, share and co-­create knowledge across the life, learning, and digital sciences. To this end we develop interdisciplinary research, methodologies and resources as well as mentor individuals, groups, and institutions in collaborative, hands­-on learning through research.

Our work defines new ways of learning, teaching, researching and stimulating collective intelligence to address the challenges of our time.


Degree Programs

Today, the CRI offers three integrated degree programs open to applicants of diverse backgrounds and interests.

The FDV undergraduate program in the life sciences emphasizes quantitative approaches, creativity, and learning through research. We accept about 25 students per year and offers degrees through Paris-Descartes University.

The AIV master's program emphasizes systems, synthetic and computational biology as well as extensive opportunities for self-guided research. About 20 students per year are enrolled through Paris Descartes University or Paris Diderot University.

The FDV PhD Program is one of 32 doctoral schools hosted by the Sorbonne Paris Cité University. Doctoral candidates study in a wide range of academic disciplines including natural sciences, engineering and technology, medical and health sciences, and social sciences.

Our undergraduate program includes both French and English instruction, while the master's and doctoral programs are conducted exclusively in English. To learn more about our programs or to apply, check out the CRI pedagogic programs page.

Paris Bettencourt iGEM

The International Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) competition brings together student teams from hundreds of the world's top universities to create synthetic biology projects of their own design. Every spring, a team of undergraduate and master's students self-assembles at the CRI and rises to this challenge.

Over more than 10 years, the Paris Bettencourt iGEM team has consistently brought home top prizes, including a Grand Prize in 2013. Driven by student creativity and passion, the subject of the project changes every year : tuberculosis, body odor, biosafety, nutrition and stain removal just to name a few. The team is always looking for new members, mentors, fans and friends, so come get involved!