Group Leader across Biological Scales: Theoretical Science

The Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência (IGC), in Oeiras near Lisbon, invites applications for a full-time research position as Principal Investigators to join a community of collaborative scientists investigating curiosity driven research questions.

The IGC aims to reinforce and encourage cross-disciplinary quantitative research. This call particularly focuses on researchers interested in systems biology, computational biology, bioinformatics, and theoretical biological physics across a broad spectrum of topics studying biological phenomena. The candidate should have a strong interest in studying systems that are either biological in origin or serve as informative models thereof. These can vary in scale from the cellular to the whole ecosystem. 


How to apply

Applications are submitted through the online platform, in English. Documents (in one PDF file) depending on the position level shall be uploaded on the platform.

The call was open from 26/01/2022 to 01/03/2022.


Attractive topics include (but are not limited to):

  • Genotype to phenotype analysis
  • Biological network analysis 
  • Biomechanics across scales
  • Theory in complexity science and systems biophysics 
  • Out of equilibrium statistical mechanics approaches to biological phenomena
  • Evolutionary and ecological microbial dynamics 
  • Machine-learning for the study of biological systems


More information on current research at IGC


Application documents (in one PDF file):

  1. Summary of previous research (1 page) and a 5 years research plan (maximum 3 pages, excluding references);
  2. Concise CV (max 3 pages) with an addendum containing the publication list;
  3. Up to three publications considered of special merit with a brief explanation of why these were chosen.
  4. Names and contacts of 2 – 4 potential referees.
  5. As independent referees might be contacted, candidates can exclude up to 5 referees.


The selection process will focus on originality of science and fit to the institute. Thus, numerical indicators will not be considered. IGC was and stays an early implementer of the DORA declaration and open science. 

All applications need to be received by March 1, 2022.


About the IGC

The Gulbenkian Science Institute (IGC) is a world-known international research institute that engages in ground-breaking research in the Life Sciences. IGC also has a strong history in innovative practices in training, in outreach and in fostering science in developing countries. The IGC is part of the Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, a private foundation that aims to build a sustainable society based on knowledge and equal opportunities, hosting complementary initiatives that link science to education, development, music and arts.

The IGC is situated 20 minutes away from the vibrant Lisbon in the beautiful city of Oeiras where the river meets the Atlantic Ocean. Oeiras is a hotspot for Science and Innovation and, as the rest of Portugal, hosts a liberal, open society that welcomes citizens of all backgrounds and life styles. International schools can be found in Oeiras and Lisbon, as well as a rich cultural environment and enjoyable neighbourhoods. Core values of the institute are diversity, communication, collaboration and open science.

A key strength of IGC resides in enabling interactions between researchers who work cross disciplinary in the life sciences, thus advancing new fields at the interface of disciplines. Scientific diversity and small communities facilitate researchers to reach out and collaborate with their colleagues. This structure creates a unique and special environment, where individual contributions coalesce into unforeseen and projects. Consequently, the IGC endorses flat hierarchies. 

Of the 26 active groups more than 40% are led by female group leaders in a community of 46 nationalities. We foster a collaborative, cross-disciplinary environment that embraces studies over multiple scales from cells to ecosystems across timescales, using quantitative approaches. An important area of research at the IGC is the study of host-microbe interactions in health and disease. To fully understand these topics, however, our science is strongly grounded on the understanding of how cells and organisms develop and are maintained, as well as how they are shaped by ecology and evolution.

Researchers are provided with outstanding conditions including access to our exceptional core services including advanced optical and electron microscopy, flowcytometry, genomics, units helping with data analysis bioinformatics and an excellent animal facility that hosts various model and non-model organisms.

The Institute further offers career and leadership development plans for Group Leaders. 

Group leaders also have access to students from our prestigious IBB PhD program that takes pride in the creative engagement of the students in the development of their research projects, for which IGC will take over most costs and to the PONTE postdoc program, which allows independent thinkers from the exact sciences to establish novel research ideas between labs.

The IGC is part of a broad network of local and international scientific Institutions that provide further critical mass as well as access to infrastructures, hospitals and companies (e.g. COLife, EU-Life).



Updated on 02 march 2022

Relevant information

Deadline to submit applications: 1 March 2022 

Queries can be directed to the Deputy Director of Science, Caren Norden: [email protected] 

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