Statistical and Biological Physics

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Johannes Knebel

Johannes Knebel, M.Sc.

PhD student


Theresienstr. 37
D-80333 Munich

Room: A335
Phone: +49 (0)89 2180-4516
Fax: +49 89 2180-4517

Research interests

  • I am interested in transport and condensation phenomena occurring in nonequilibrium jump processes. These processes find a broad range of application, for example in the study of
    • mass transport models (condensation and depletion of network nodes / lattice sites),
    • condensation in nonequilibrium boson systems that are incoherently driven and dissipative (condensation and depletion of quantum states),
    • evolutionary game theory (win and loss of strategies)
    • biodiversity in population dynamics (survival and extinction of species), and
    • in autocatalytic bimolecular reaction networks (production and consumption of chemical species).
  • From a mathematical point of view, I study the interplay between nonlinear dynamics (arising through particle interactions or quantum statistics) and stochasticity (arising through demographic noise). This interplay gives rise to interesting phenomena ranging from transport to condensation of particles.
  • Furthermore, I am interested in the evolution of cooperation at microbial level (public goods dilemma) and, more generally, in microbiology.

Curriculum vitae

  • since 01/2012: PhD student in the group of Prof. Frey, LMU Munich, Germany. Supported by the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes.
  • 10/2010 - 09/2011: Master student in the group of Prof. Frey, LMU Munich Master thesis: Evolution of cooperation in bacterial biofilms. My master thesis in a nutshell according to http://wordle.nethannestagcloud
  • 10/2009 - 09/2010: Certificate of Advanced Study in Mathematics (Part III), University of CambridgeEssay: Application of stochastic field theory to reaction-diffusion problems
  • 10/2008 - 09/2011: Studies of Theoretical and Mathematical Physics (TMP), LMU Munich, Elitenetzwerk Bayern. Supported by the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes and by the Max-Weber Programm Bayern.
  • 10/2005 - 09/2008: Studies of Physics and Mathematics, University of Rostock, Germany
  • 07/2004: Abitur, Käthe-Kollwitz-Gymnasium, Rostock, Germany

Research courses and research stays

Invited talks

  • 07/2015: Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Cambridge (MA), “Evolutionary games of condensates – Condensation in driven-dissipative systems of non-interacting bosons”.
  • 05/2015: SFB-TR12 Conference, University of Cologne, “Evolutionary games of condensates”.
  • 05/2013: IQOQI, Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of Innsbruck, “Coexistence and survival in conservative Lotka-Volterra systems”.
  • 10/2011: Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön, “Evolution of cooperation in bacterial biofilms – A stochastic model for the growth and sinking of bacterial mats”.

Contributed talks

  • 03/2015: DPG-Frühjahrstagung in Berlin.
  • 03/2015: APS March Meeting in San Antonio.
  • 04/2014: DPG-Frühjahrstagung in Dresden.
  • 03/2014: APS March Meeting in Denver.
  • 03/2013: DPG-Frühjahrstagung in Regensburg.
  • 03/2012: DPG-Frühjahrstagung in Berlin.
  • 02/2012: APS March Meeting in Boston.
  • 02/2012: SFB-TR12 Meeting in Langeoog.


Matthias Bauer, Johannes Knebel, Matthias Lechner, Peter Pickl, Erwin Frey,
Ecological feedback in quorum-sensing microbial populations can induce heterogeneous production of autoinducers,
eLife 2017; 6:e25773.

Johannes Knebel, Markus F. Weber, Erwin Frey,
Fluid dynamics: In pursuit of turbulence,
Nat. Phys. 12, 204-205 (2016).

Johannes Knebel, Markus F. Weber, Torben Krüger, Erwin Frey,
Evolutionary games of condensates in coupled birth-death processes,
Nature Communications 6, 6977 (2015). [arXiv:1504.07816]

Elke Hebisch, Johannes Knebel, Janek Landsberg, Erwin Frey, Madeleine Leisner,
High Variation of Fluorescence Protein Maturation Times in Closely Related Escherichia Coli Strains,
PLoS ONE 8 (10), e0075991 (2013).

Johannes Knebel, Torben Krüger, Markus F. Weber, Erwin Frey,
Coexistence and survival in conservative Lotka-Volterra networks,
Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 168106 (2013). [arxiv:1303.7116]