Doctoral researchers are admitted directly into the JSMC program by recruitment to our vacancies (please check our vacancies page for current calls). Members of JSMC-associated research training groups ILRS and IMPRS and/or supervised by a JSMC Faculty Member can apply for admission to JSMC during the starting phase of their doctorate.

Admission to the JSMC as JSMC Doctoral Researcher grants full access to the JSMC Training Program and the services by the Graduate School of Excellence.

For details on the benefits available to JSMC Doctoral Researchers and the application procedure for JSMC admission please refer to the following “Guide on how to become a JSMC Doctoral Researcher”.

Please note: unsolicited applications for admission outside of recruitment calls will NOT be considered.

The JSMC Recruitments

Selection of applicants for the JSMC PhD Position with funding for a 3,5-year research project including a contribution to consumables budget is organized in JSMC Recruitments. Recruitment Calls are launched several times per year. Applications for the JSMC Positions are invited from young researchers from all over the world. Please find the details on the candidate selection procedure for the JSMC Positions below.

General Requirements for a JSMC Fellowship Application

Applicants must have, or be about to obtain, a Master's degree or equivalent (the German 'Diplom') in Natural Sciences or a related field. Students holding a Bachelor's degree from a research-oriented institution can also be admitted to the program in exceptional cases, if they have shown outstanding performance such as making a major contribution to a peer-reviewed publication.

In general, those eligible to apply will be students with a degree in biology, chemistry, physics, medical sciences, bioinformatics or earth sciences. Please check whether your research experience matches the open projects on offer during the current Recruitment Call. Applicants should show a strong interest in the JSMC research program centered on the overarching topic of microbial communication and be willing to engage enthusiastically in cross-disciplinary projects.  All candidates should demonstrate adequate competence in the English language as this is the language of instruction at JSMC.

Recruitment Procedure

The JSMC Recruitment is a three-stage process:

Stage 1: Submit your application via our Online Application Portal

Please acquaint yourself with the PhD projects offered within the latest JSMC Recruitment Call. Then access our Online Application Portal to enter your application data and to upload additional documents.

Documents required for the PhD/PostDoc application

  • A comprehensive and up-to-date Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  • A Letter of Motivation of up to two pages in length
  • A proof of your English Proficiency is highly recommended, but not mandatory
  • Official Proofs of your academic higher education by all Transcript of Records (ToRs) and Diploma/Certificates for each program you have attended
  • Two Academic Letters of Recommendation from two different referees (professors) can be optionally uploaded, but are not mandatory

Applications can only be considered if your data is submitted to us via the Online Application Portal before the application deadline. Please DO NOT send any other documents to us by email unless you are explicitly invited to do so. Applications via email and regular mail will NOT be considered.

Stage 2: Telephone or Zoom Interviews

Candidates with adequate qualifications may be asked to participate in a telephone or zoom interview for further evaluation.

Stage 3: JSMC Recruitment Meeting

Candidates who successfully passed the first two selection stages will be invited to attend a JSMC Recruitment Meeting in Jena, Germany. Economy travel and accommodation expenses will be covered by the JSMC and we commonly invite candidates to a joint dinner or social occasion as well as a city tour. The meeting will be followed by a closed selection meeting at which the JSMC faculty will decide on admission to the JSMC. Successful candidates will be informed of the outcome by email and invited to start with their JSMC PhD Position shortly after the Recruitment Meeting. Precise starting dates can be determined on agreement with the project supervisors and JSMC management.