Information for Postdocs
All participating institutions have developed various programs to train and support young scientists at different career stages in order to foster their development towards independent positions in academia or careers in industry. Below, we introduce the institutional measures of the different institutions for Postdoctoral Scientists.
On the postdoc level, TUM has established the TUM Talent Factory(link is external), which focuses on the strategic promotion of young researchers regarding individual third party funding as well as the researcher’s integration into high-level coordinated programmes. It offers postdoc-specific courses and individual consultation regarding funding options and application processes. In order to support young scientists with applications for Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowships in Horizon 2020 calls, for example, the TUM Talent Factory organises an intensive three-days writing camp called the MSCA Masterclass(link is external). During the TUM Postdoc Days, young researchers are able to enhance their research and transferable skills by taking part in workshops on science communication, project management, grant writing or entrepreneurship.
In order to recruit excellent international talents on postdoc level, since 2013, TUM selects 50 promising young scientists every year from all over the world and invites them to the Research Opportunities Week (ROW)(link is external). During this week, the participants have the opportunity to visit different research facilities at TUM, to meet professors of their disciplines, to inform themselves about possible postdoc funding opportunities in Germany and to create a scientific network.
TUM has developed various mechanisms to support young talented scientists: Early career researchers who have raised independent third-party funded research groups in highly competitive cross-institutional, national and international programmes (such as Emmy Noether Research Groups (DFG), Sofja Kovalevskaja Award(AvH), Helmholtz Programmes, ERC Starting Grants (ERC) are awarded with the title ’TUM Junior Fellow(link is external)‘.
Postdoctoral researchers at LMU can benefit from the LMU Academic Career Program(link is external). The Junior Researcher Fund promotes the individual career development of junior academics by providing sabbaticals or seed funding for the procurement of external funding that will allow academics to pursue innovative research ideas and establish new research fields. The Investment Fund provides seed funding for the procurement of large-scale third-party funding projects directed at innovative research ideas and the establishment of new research fields. The Postdoc Support Fund provides additional resources to LMU’s faculties in order to facilitate flexible, subject-specific promotion of postdoctoral researchers, particularly for the recruitment of international postdocs, to facilitate the continuation of scientific activity, e.g. following periods of parental leave or care for relatives (re-entry funding), for networking activities, as well as for open-access publishing activities. The Knowledge Transfer Fund provides seed funding for projects aimed at the further development of basic research into technological, social or economic innovations.
The Center for Advanced Studies (CAS)(link is external) devotes significant resources to the support of junior academics. Promising junior scholars are appointed as members of CAS's Young Center, where they profit from interdisciplinary communication through events and projects. The Junior Researcher in Residence(link is external) program of CAS offers members of academic staff as well as fellows of LMU Munich an opportunity to spend one semester at CAS including funding for conferences, workshops, and the invitation of visiting fellows. In addition, postdoctoral researchers can draw on a comprehensive mentoring scheme. As part of the program LMUMentoring, renowned and experienced academics act as mentors offering their mentees advice in planning their career and developing their academic profiles. The LMU Research Services(link is external) offer information, advice and training on acquiring third-party-funded research projects. Services include individual consultation and support as well as events. Additionally, tailored career counseling is offered to postdocs regardless of whether they are interested in careers in academia, business or society.
In 2014 the Center launched postdoctoral training programmes to further enhance the center’s support for the next generation of talented scientists. The program for all postdocs at HMGU(link is external) supports their scientific career development and enhances their employability by providing training in leadership, communication and management, combined with access to further mentoring and coaching opportunities. The international Postdoctoral Fellowship Program (PFP)(link is external) aims to recruit top international talents and supports them in their development of a competitive scientific profile for a successful career in academic research or industry. Postdocs who are accepted into this three-year program can focus on a research project in an HMGU member institute. The program includes an individual career-development plan, coaching and mentoring, support in preparing grant applications, travel grants and joint training modules to enhance communication and leadership skills. Step by step, fellows develop their own scientific profile and visibility in their respective field of research. The program is distinguished from other programs because it provides an excellent research environment and in addition actively supports the career development of its fellows.
The Career Center(link is external) for doctoral students and postdocs was launched in December 2018 as the central contact point for career guidance and counseling for doctoral students and postdocs. With agile and transformative counseling formats like “walk-ins”, brown bag seminars and online formats, the Career Center perfectly adapts to the needs of the target groups. Individual Career Development Plans (IDP) support young scientists to gain a clear picture of personal strengths, values and interests and to research requirements for various career paths. The IDP will be used to create a roadmap to enhance the knowledge, skills and abilities of the student, to make realistic career decisions and to develop strategies to follow personal career goals. Furthermore, the IDP will serve as a central tool to bring together the different options within the Career Center portfolio, such as career orientation and information, coaching and consulting, networking, role models and company visits. Annual career days will complement the program.
Postdoctoral fellows are organized within the MPIB Postdoctoral Association(link is external), which provides an active platform that integrates new postdocs, organizes monthly seminar series, offers soft skills courses specifically tailored to the needs of postdocs, and represents an interface between the administration of the MPIB and postdocs.
The DKFZ Postdoc Program is the German Cancer Research Center’s central program to provide comprehensive support to young researchers while doing their postdoc at the center. Highly talented young scientists from all over the world who wish to pursue research projects in basic and translational cancer research are welcome to join the program. The DKFZ Postdoctoral Fellowships(link is external) represent the most prestigious and competitive Postdoc recruitment process at the DKFZ. It is intended to recruit highly talented and motivated young scientist, who wish to work at the forefront of cancer research in any of basic or translational cancer research labs at the DKFZ. This program offers up to 10 fellowships per year and provides interdisciplinary training and research opportunities in state-of-the-art research facilities for excellent young scientists, no longer than 2 years past graduation, with a background in biology as well as in physics, mathematics, bioinformatics, epidemiology and other research fields.
The PostDoc Network (PDN) (link is external)was formed to represent the PostDocs` interests and to achieve the best conditions for career perspectives and scientific output. The main goals are to raise the visibility of PostDocs in and outside the DKFZ, to support career development and to increase social and scientific networking among PostDocs.
The Center for Graduate & Postgraduate Researchers (WIN)(link is external) is a cross-faculty facility for supporting and advancing early career scientists and scholars at Universität Regensburg. It aims to advise university leadership on the strategic development of prospects for early career scientists and scholars. In addition, the WIN supports academic departments, graduate schools, research training groups and other units of academic career development in creating optimal conditions for early career scientists and scholars. The career prospects, networking and international visibility of early career scientists and scholars at UR are promoted as well.