A few consideration on PhDs: A few considerations on PhD: A few considerations on a PhD:

Open Positions (Master, PhD and Postdoc) in Molecular Evolution and Genomeinformatics

Unless further specified, the specific subjects of research projects are flexible and can be tailored to the background, visions and incitement of applicants but must fall under the wider remit of our research areas which there are:

  • Major evolutionary transitions of genomes (such as de novo genes) and their impact on the development of complexity
  • Evolutionary and functional genomics of (mostly social) insects
  • Modular Evolution of Genes by Domain (Re-)arrangements
  • Evolvability and robustness, the role of pleiotropic and epistatic interactions for changes in the genotype-phenotye relationship

Postdoctoral Research Associate -- 100% FTE Social Insect Genomics and Systems Biology

We are looking for a postdoc who is enthusiastic to join the project area of social insect genomics. S/he will work on questions regarding the molecular basis of sociality and related phenomena such as ageing (or the lack thereof), nutrition and fertility. S/he will work in close collaboration with experimental and theoretical groups from within Germany and across Europe (see e.g. FOR2281 solong, http://bornberglab.org/researches ). S/he will work mostly computationally and, accordingly, should have good skill in bioinformatics such as scripting in Python (or any similar language). S/he will study molecular changes and network changes during development, caste differentiation and between species through comparative genomics, transcriptomics, network analyses and related methods. Furthermore, s/he should be knowledgable about social insects and their life history traits. S/he should also be keen to and capable of working in a highly international and interdisciplinary environment. Accordingly, excellent language skills in English are essential.

This position is likely to start in mid 2019 (depending on some administrative details) and the contract will presumably be for 12+15 months. Applicants may express their interests by sending their short résumé as described below from now on and apply to the official announcement as soon it is issued on the website of the University.

Postdoctoral Project Leader / Assistant Professorship ("Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter" auf einer Qualifikationsstelle):

We are looking for applications from excellent researchers with 2+ years of postodoctoral experience in the area of social insect genomics to start on this position in our group from May 2019 onwards. Qualifications should be as given above (postdoc position) and match the general particulars given below. Furthermore, the candidate should also have an excellent track record (e.g. publications in highly recognised international journals) and proven experience in teaching and organising related courses at the BSc and MSc level, in particular on Biocomputing. S/he is expected to also concieve, conduct and disseminate projects related to social insects, to apply for related funding and to supervise students at all levels of their curricula (mostly biologists but also CS and Mathematics or related). S/he is expected to acquire further qualifications for a "Habilitation" or comparable.

The contract will be for 1+2+3 years and applicants should start sending their short résumé as described below from now on and apply to the official announcement as soon it is issued on the website of the University.

Research Associate at the level of a graduate student with the option to also qualify for a PhD (50% FTE, 1.2 years)

We welcome applications from excellent students with qualifications in biological sciences and/or bioinformatics. Applicants should have a strong background in insect genomics and computational proteomic analyses as well as basic expertise in structural and functional prtein analysis using bacterial expression systems, purification techniques and CD and/or NMR.
The post holder will join a small team comprising experimentalists and computational biologists and work on the genomic, transcriptomic and computational identification of proteins from inbred iso-female lines of fruit flies.

The contract will be for 1+2 years and applicant should start sending their short resume as described below from now on and apply officially as soon the announcement appears on the website of the University.


All information on all 3 announcements is preliminary and a non-binding notice of intent . Official announcements are due to appear soon.


Further applications of self-funded postdocs and PhD students to work on protein and genome evolution, either experimentally or computationally, are always welcome (see below for links to some funding agencies).


Student helpers / researchers  ("Studentische / Wisenschaftliche Hilfskraft") to help install and maintain computer infrastructure, web resources and establish and refine teaching materials and databases in the group and for research projects such as Genome Evolution and Protein Evolution. Commencing date is any time 2016, contracts can be issued to the needs of the applicants with flexible working times ranging from 7 hrs (complies with the 450 EUR threshold) to 19 hrs per week.


General particulars for POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCH ASSOCIATES ("Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter")
Essential qualifications are:
  • PhD in natural sciences and research experience in a biological area OR
  • PhD in computer science, mathematics, statistics, physics or bioinformatics with experience and/or desire to excel in a biological area
  • Basic skills in statistics and/or programming
  • Very good organisation skills and motivation and proven ability to carry out research independently in an international and interdisciplinary team.
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, oral and written fluency in English

Candidates are encouraged to develop their own research agenda by supervising students and applying for their own funds but this is not a must.

Ability and willingness to supplement a base-funded or third-party funded open position with an own fellowship are expected for all open positions and will be a selection criterion (see links below for a starter). Candidates will be given extensive guidance and support in preparing their grant applications.


General particulars for applications as PhD STUDENTS ("Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter") in our group.

Essential qualifications are:
  • MSc or 4yr BSc degree (or equivalent) in biology, biochemistry, physics or bioinformatics and research experience in a biological area
  • Basic skills in statistics and programming and/or molecular biology and biotechnology
  • Motivation and proven ability to carry out research independently
  • Good communication skills, good knowledge and command of English.
Please mind: particulars on PhD (in German) [download], test your motivation and aptitude, some thoughts about structuring a PhD programme
 Apprenticeship vs. contractual work.

Interested candidates should send applications to Prof. Bornberg-Bauer ebb.admin [at] uni-muenster.de as pdf attachment (max. 2 pages) detailing in order latest first:
biodata, scientific career, education, special relevant skills, list of publications, names of prospective referees and a short specific statement of research interest.
Failure to comply with these guidelines may easily lead to the application not be considerd and not acknowledged. Bulk applications may be overlooked.
All applicants are advised that all job offers become only official and effective once administration has approved.

Prof. Dr. Erich Bornberg-Bauer
Molecular Evolution and Genome Informatics,
Institut for Evolution and Biodiversity,
FB Biologie, Westfälische Wilhelms Universität Münster
Hüfferstrasse 1, D-48149 Münster, Germany

Best qualified candidates will be endorsed for fellowship applications to which we currently have a good success rate.

Check here for: Humboldt Foundation ,Sofja Kovalevskaja Fellowships, Volkswagen Foundation , DFG (only in German) , Marie Curie Fellowships , HFSP fellowships , DAAD fellowships .
Other opportunities: ProTalent for students

Postdoctoral and PhD positions are usually remunerated according to the TVL scheme. Teaching and administrative duties are generally low, with amount and balance depending on the particular project as well as background, qualifications and experience of candidates. Cost/salary table for students researchers and helpers can be found here.


MASTER and BSc  THESES at the IEB, Institute of Evolution and Biodiversity, University of Muenster, Germany are available at the end of every semester to start at the following semester, for subjects listed and with financial support being possible (see above for student helpers/researchers), depending on qualifications, tasks etc. International and national collaborations are often endorsed. Students are invited to inquire any time at the office e.g. by email to ebb.admin [at] wwu.de or call ext. 21638.

Muenster hosts many excellent scientific institutions such as a newly founded Max-Planck Institute for biomedical research, a Centre for Nanotechnology or a great number of specialised research areas ("SFBs"). Muenster is a dynamic city with a world-famous heritage centre and in the middle of the beautiful ''Muensterland''. It is very lively, last not least because of the high number of students and the rich choice of social, cultural and sporting facilities (see www.muenster.de )

Women are strongly encouraged to apply.
Equal opportunity regulations apply.