Dynamics of Living Systems
Rangitoto from Devonport, Aotearoa



I say, if your knees aren’t green by the end of the day, you ought to seriously re-examine your life. Bill Watterson, (Calvin and Hobbes)

Chaitanya S. Gokhale
Professor- Theoretical Biology
Center for Computational and Theoretical Biology Klara-Oppenheimer-Weg 32 Campus Hubland Nord 97074 Würzburg


Research Group Leader - Theoretical E-co-evolutionary dynamics
Department of Evolutionary Theory
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology,
Plön, Germany

My name is Chaitanya (first name) Gokhale (last name). I was born in Pune, which is a city in Central Western India (about 200 kms inland from Mumbai). Below is a web version of my curriculum vitae.

Personal Data

Citizenship: Indian
Place and Date of Birth: Pune, Maharashtra, India | 17 June 1984
Languages: Marathi (mother-tongue), English, German, Hindi

Awards & Fundings


Bundesamt für Naturschutz (Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, Germany) - Potential risks of synthetic gene-drive systems and a request for monitoring.


  • Royal Society of New Zealand: Marsden Fund, Associate Investigator with Paul Rainey: “Lineage selection and evolution of cancer”
  • DFG Priority Program: SPP 1590 Principal Investigator grant - “Probabilistic Structures in Evolution”
  • Otto Hahn Medal: Max Planck Society

Academic Positions

Current positions

2023 - Professor, CCTB, Julius-Maximilians University Wuerzburg, Germany 2016 - Group Leader, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Plön, Germany
2016 - Full Member, Kiel Evolution Center, Kiel, Germany

Post-doctoral experience

2014 - 2016 Post doctoral researcher, New Zealand Institute for Advanced Study, Massey University, Auckland, New Zealand
2011 - 2014 Post doctoral researcher, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Plön, Germany

Visiting researcher

  • Max Planck Institute for Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany

  • Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, Santa Barbara, U.S.A.
  • Santa Fe Institute, Santa Fe, U.S.A.
  • National Centre For Biological Sciences, Bangalore, India

  • Center for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, India

Reviewing & Board memberships

Editorial Board: Journal of Evolutionary Biology, Scientific Reports
Committee: - International Max Planck Research School
- PhD thesis evaluation committee member, Massey University
- L’ORÉAL Austria - Fellowship for Young Female Scientists in Basic Research
- Santa Fe Institute Complex Systems Summer School

Teaching, Workshops and Science communication

Massey University - Structured Undergraduate Program

- Origin of Genetic variation I
- Origin of Genetic variation II
- Co-evolution
- Cooperation and Conflict
- Evolutionary Game Theory

Guest seminars

In the lecture series of Prof. Hinrich Schulenburg (University of Kiel)
- Co-evolution
- Evolutionary Game Theory

- Evolutionary games: from cells to societies - Evolutionary games: cooperation

In established lecture series of Prof. Arne Traulsen (University of Lübeck)

2019 - Evolutionary multiplayer games

University of Bielefeld

2020 - Evolutionary games: from cells to societies

Public talks in German

- Max Planck Day: “Max Planck in Plön: Kleine Stadt Große Auswirkung”

- Public Lecture: “Evolutionäre Spieltheorie”


- Detektor.fm on “Forschungsquartett | Chancen und Risiken der Genschere”

Seminar Series

- Year of Mathematical Biology Speakers: Hanna Kokko, Nick Barton, Michael Doebeli, Michael Lynch, Alison Etheridge and Pleuni Pennings
- Workshop organiser together with Jorge Peña: The biology and economics of mutualism