Open Positions

Visit regularly this page to check out our open positions.
If there is no open positions available in the group you would like to work in, do not hesitate to send unsolicited application directly to the group leader. 

FGLS Graduate School

  • International PhD program of the Fribourg Graduate School of Life Sciences (FGLS)

    The Fribourg Graduate School of Life Sciences (FGLS) is an interdisciplinary, international graduate school, which offers a coordinated doctoral program in life sciences at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland. It addresses doctoral students in the fields of biology, biochemistry, molecular medicine, chemistry, physics, bioinformatics, and mathematics who have a life science focus. State-of-the-art theoretical and experimental research will lead to a PhD in science.

    Currently, we are recruiting students in the fields of:


    We offer an integrated research and training program which leads to a PhD after three to four years. The entire program is run in English. It includes supervision and mentoring, as well as courses on novel technologies and soft skills. We expect applicants to have an excellent university degree and to be motivated and interested in interdisciplinary research subjects. Excellent communication skills in English are of benefit.

    Candidates are requested to send by email a SINGLE PDF application including a CV, a brief statement of their research interests, a copy of their Master diploma (with grades), and names of three referees to

    Mrs Adeline Guélat
    Department of Biology

    Application is open until May 31st, 2018. Interviews will take place in the week June 11th 2018.

Bacher Lab

  • Postdoc in Invasion Biology

    Uncertainty in environmental and socio-economic impact assessments of alien taxa. The recently developed protocols EICAT and SEICAT allow classification of alien taxa according to the magnitude of their environmental and socio-economic impacts. EICAT has been recently adopted by the IUCN as a global standard for impacts of alien taxa. However, although they allow adding a confidence score to each assessment, theconsideration of this uncertainty in the final classification is currently inadequate. This leads to inconsistencies in impact assessments among assessors. This project addresses these inconsistencies and will provide solutions for the treatment of uncertainty. The tasks of the postdoc will include: (1) Development of a publicly available database with S/EICAT assessments that can be used for future assessments of all alien taxa; this database should be made available online and preferentially be hosted by a prominent international organization (e.g. IUCN). (2) S/EICAT assessments of European alien beetles as a model group, with the implementation of approaches for the treatment of uncertainty, and the analysis of these assessments to identify factors explaining context dependence in impact magnitudes.


    The ideal candidate holds an excellent PhD degree in ecology or related discipline. The candidate should be familiar with invasion science; previous experience with database management and/or alien insects is advantageous. S/he should have a deep interest in interdisciplinary collaboration. The scientific working language is English of which good spoken and written ability is required. Knowledge of spoken French or German would be advantageous to live in Fribourg, a bilingual town, but is not mandatory.



    Entrance starting at earliest August 2018. The position is initially limited to one year, but can be extended to max. 4 years. This position is partly funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation, and the gross salary depends on previous experience, but is around CHF 70’000 per year.


    A letter of motivation, CV, and contact information for two reference persons should be sent as a single attached pdf file to by 11. May 2018.


    Alien species, impact assessments, uncertainty, EICAT, SEICAT

Sprecher Lab

  • PhD position in molecular and genetic basis of learning and forgetting

    We are looking for highly motivated PhD students with interest in neurobiology, neurogenetics and behavioral biology to join our reserach group. 

    Your mission
    The project is aimed to understand the genetic and molecular mechanisms of how forgetting is regulated. While the molecular basis of learning has been well studied, only little is known of how memory maintenance and forgetting functions on a cellular, molecular and biochemical basis. We apply state of the art molecular and genetic techniques, Drosophila genetic methods, and imaging of neurons, circuit components and synapses. The project will make use of state-of-the-art behavioral neurogenetic tools, but also require CRISPR/Cas9 mediated genome editing in order to study gene function with a high-precision in a cell-specific fashion.

    Your profile

    • Applicants must hold a masters degree in neurobiology, molecular biology, genetics or related scientific fields.
    • Previous experience in molecular biology, behavioral biology, microscopy, neurobiology or genetics is highly desirable.
    • Previous exposure to programming, image analysis, optics and microscopy etc. is appreciated.


    We offer

    The position is funded at an international highly competitive level, according to the SNF guidelines.

    Please send your CV and letter of motivation via email to or Reference letters from 2-3 referees should be sent to the same address.
    Further information can be obtained from Prof. Simon Sprecher.

  • PhD position in behavioral, cellular and molecular neurogenetics of sensory systems

    We are looking for a highly motivated PhD student with interest in behavioral, cellular neurogenetics and functional imaging to join our Drosophila research group.

    Your mission
    Our laboratory is interested in fundamental aspects of how sensory information is perceived and processed in the corresponding executing neuronal network controlling behavior. We use the powerful genetic tools available in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster to assess the visual and gustatory system in the larval stage. We have recently identified neurons of the visual circuit by combining light microscopy, serial EM reconstruction and high-resolution behavioral analysis. The goal of ongoing projects is to fully dissect the visual circuit by implementing physiological techniques (electrophysiological recordings and activity recording using genetically encoded calcium sensors) and exploring the corresponding behavioral impact.

    Your profile

    • Applicants must hold a Masters degree in a relevant field (e.g. Neurophysiology, Neurobiology, Neuroscience, Systems Neurobiology or Neurogenetics), which is recognized by the University of Fribourg
    • Previous experience with neurophysiology, functional imaging or behavioral biology is a must; previous experience in molecular biology, fruit fly research, bioinformatics, behavioral biology or genetics is appreciated.

    We offer

    The position is funded at an international highly competitive level, according to the SNF guidelines.

    Please send your CV and letter of motivation via email to or Reference letters from 2-3 referees should be sent to the same address. Further information can be obtained from Dr Simon Sprecher.

Vanni Lab

  • PhD and Postdoctoral Opportunities in Computational Biophysics and Biochemistry of Membranes

    Several PhD and one postdoc positions are available in our newly-established Laboratory of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry.

    Your mission

    Our group develops and applies computer simulations to investigate how the molecular properties of proteins, lipids and membranes modulate cellular processes. We combine these in silico investigations with biochemical and biophysical approaches to understand key biological mechanisms with atomistic molecular resolution. Please check our group webpage for more information.

    Currently, we have openings in the following research areas:

    • Intracellular lipid and fat accumulation
    • Protein-membrane interactions
    • Force field development
    • Nanoparticles-membrane interactions

    Your profile

    We are looking for highly motivated, team-oriented independent thinkers. For the postdoc position, the applicant should have a PhD in physics, chemistry, physical chemistry, biophysics, engineering or a related subject. The applicant should have a background in molecular dynamics simulations or computational chemistry. Previous experience in combining simulations with NMR experiments OR in simulations of materials/nanoparticles are a plus. For the PhD positions, the applicant should have a Master Degree in physics, chemistry, biology, bioinformatics, computer science, engineering or a related subject. Computer literacy and previous experience with molecular simulations, as well as good communication skills and proficiency in English are a plus. In general, any previous specific knowledge is less important than strong motivation, enthusiasm for scientific research, problem-solving skills, and possibly a track-record of individual and team accomplishments.

    We offer

    The positions are funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation and by the NCCR in Bio-Inspired Materials . We offer a stimulating, friendly and interdisciplinary work environment, with excellent working conditions (salary, resources, …) and frontier research projects. The Department of Biology of the University of Fribourg (Switzerland) gathers very dynamic researchers with a strong commitment toward innovation and excellence in science. It offers a stimulating and supportive environment, with an open-minded atmosphere ideal to foster synergies.

    The selected candidates will also have the opportunity to interact extensively with members of the Department of Chemistry and of the Adolphe Merkle Institute in Fribourg, with whom collaborations are ongoing. In addition, they will also benefit from strong international collaborations with outstanding experimental labs in the fields of membrane biology, soft matter and nanomaterials. The successful PhD candidates will enrol in the Fribourg Graduate School of Life Sciences (FGLS) providing high-quality education opportunities to complement the laboratory training. It will also benefit from the close proximity to the CECAM headquarters in Lausanne, where multiple workshops and schools in computational science are held every year ( ). PhD positions are fully funded for 3 years, with a possible 1-year extension. In addition, PhD students will have the possibility to apply to generous international postdoctoral fellowship from the SNF after completion of their PhD. Initial gross annual salary for PhD students will be 47,040 CHF (~ 47,000 $). The postdoc position is fully funded for 2 years, with a possible 2-years extension. In addition, the postdoc will have the possibility to apply to prestigious and generous fellowships from the SNF to start an independent career after completion of their postdoctoral fellowship. Initial gross annual salary for Postdocs will be 65,000 CHF (~ 65,000 $).


    Please send your application, including short cover letter (explaining background and motivation) and a complete CV via e-mail to Stefano Vanni