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Young scientists at the poster session of teh cluster science days 2021

Early Career

We support junior scientists

Beyond the boundaries

Multimedia report

In our multimedia report "Beyond the boundaries" we introduce some of our outstanding group leaders. We take a closer look on their scientific work and their career paths within ImmunoSensation2, highlighting their innovative research approaches as well as the excellent research environment at the University of Bonn.

The report introduces

  • Prof. Elvira Mass - Life and Medical Sciences Insitute (LIMES)
  • Prof. Florian Schmidt - Institute of Innate Immunity (III)
  • Dr. Selina Jorch - Institute of Molecular Medicine and Experimental Immunology (IMMEI)

Support for early career researchers

The promotion of young investigators at all levels of their careers is key to ImmunoSensation2. To this end, we have developed a multilayered development concept. The concept consists of four layers to provide training and funding alongside all career steps, from PhD student to tenured professorship.

Graduate School

For the training of graduate students, the Bonn International Graduate School (BIGS) Immunoscience and Infection was established. It provides a unique framework for all PhD students in the fields of immunology and infectious diseases in Bonn.

BIGS Immunosciences & Infection

School of Advanced Studies

Targeting Postdoctoral fellows, we offer support via the Bonn School of Advanced Studies in Immunology. Here, young researchers may recieve training on various aspects of early scientific life and expand their network inside the scientific environment.

Bonn School of Advanced Studies in Immunology

Young PI support

Dedicated advanced postdocs are encouraged to become young group leaders. The BONFOR program of the Medical Faculty offers start up fellowships for postdocs and funding opportunities for independent research projects. At the Mathematical and Natural Sciences Faculty, Argelander Grants are available for early career researchers.
ImmunoSensation2 supports postdocs on their way to scientific independence through individual support and mentoring measures.

Funding programs


The tenure-track model offers young researchers an alternative path to a professorship. Available tenure-track positions are announced on the homepage of the University of Bonn. If you were awarded a prestigious externally evaluated research grant, like an Emmy Noether junior research group or ERC starting grant, you can contact us regarding tenure-track options.

Tenure track at Bonn University

Bonn International Graduate School (BIGS) Immunosciences and Infection

The Cluster of Excellence ImmunoSensation2 established the Bonn International Graduate School (BIGS) Immunosciences and Infection in 2016. It provides a common framework for all PhD students in the fields of immunology and infectious diseases at the University of Bonn. The BIGS Immunosciences and Infection succeeds the former International Immunology Training Program Bonn (IITB), established in 2013 by ImmunoSensation, and provides an umbrella for the DFG-funded Bonn-Melbourne International Research Training Group on Immunology IRTG 2168 and other international PhD student exchange programs. The structured 3-year graduate program is open for students who have completed a Master’s program in Molecular Biomedicine or related disciplines. We explicitly aim to recruit talented students from abroad.

The ImmunoSensation2 graduate program offers a structured program on innate immunity including:

  • seminar series
  • meet-the-expert events
  • scientific method courses
  • scientific soft skills training
  • participation in international conferences
  • short-term fellowships
  • Winter and Summer Schools on Innate Immunity and other retreats
  • a mentoring program
  • visits to biotech companies
  • career counseling
  • networking events

BIGS Immunosciences and Infection

Bonn School of Advanced Studies in Immunology

The Bonn School of Advanced Studies in Immunology aims to provide an intensive advanced training for early career postdoctoral scientists in order to prepare them for their future high-level international careers. The school combines regular meetings in the form of a Postdoc Meeting Series, networking events and a Young Scientists Symposium. inviting also external young scientists. The scientific curriculum of the school is developed in cooperation with the Postdoc Orga Team.

Postdoc Meeting Series

The Postdoc Meeting Series within the framework of the Bonn School of Advanced Studies in Immunology is mainly organized by the Postdoc Orga Team. The Meeting Series covers

  • Invitations of guest speakers/experts of a specific scientific field
  • Method courses
  • Soft skills workshops
  • Round table discussions on a specific topic
Young Scientists Symposium

The Young Scientists Symposium gives postdocs the opportunity to network among each other but also with postdocs from all over the world. The activities of the Bonn School of Advanced Studies in Immunology are complemented by offers for the early career scientists by the University and its faculties, as for example the Postdoc plus training Program developed by the Human Resource Development Office or by funding opportunities within the BONFOR program (Medical Faculty) and Argelander Grants (Math Nat Faculty).

Networking Events

We promote collaboration and networking between our Postdocs, each bringing their own set of skills and knowledge. As many of the PostDocs in Bonn come from all parts of Germany, Europe and the world, we want to create an environment for everyone to feel quickly at home in Bonn for this new chapter of their lives. To achieve this, networking events including BBQ nights in summer, receptions in the colder months and writing cafés are organized.

Scientific Exchange Program

For post doctoral fellows, a scientific exchange program is available with partners of the International Innate Immunity Consortium. The program aims to broaden scientific views by interacting with internationally renowned groups in the field of innate immunity and to gain key expertise on technical innovations.

PostDoc Plus

The PostDoc Plus program is a central offer made by the University of Bonn. It includes various workshops, webcasts, e-learning and coaching offers to develop a professional profile and be best equip to meet future challenges. For example, early career scientists are guided to develop general management skills and creativity and to learn to convince a range of audiences at a number of formats.

The Postdoc Orga Team

The Bonn School of Advanced Studies in Immunology is run by Postdocs, for Postdocs, with key support of the Immunosensation Cluster. Members of the team are:

  • Clivia Lisowksi - Institute of Experimental Immunology
  • Damien Bertheloot - Clinic for Orthopedics and Thrauma Surgery
  • Reiner Schneider - Department of Surgery
  • Eva Beins - Institute of Human Genetics
  • Roisin McManus - DZNE

If you're interested in staying up-to-date on events of the PostDoc program, check the talks & events section or sign up for the mailing list. If you'd like to contact the members of the PostDoc Organization Team to pass on ideas for seminars / workshops or with more general questions or comments, please email the team directly.


Funding programs

Young scientists at ImmunoSensation2 can benefit from flexible funding programs.

ImmunoSensation2 Seed Funding

ImmunoSensation is dedicated to promoting the careers of its promising early-career scientists.

The ImmunoSensation Executive Board established two funding lines to provide opportunities for its junior research group leaders, junior professors and W2 tenure-track professors who are not currently receiving basic Cluster funding: the ImmunoSensation2 Seed Funding - Research Prize and Start-Up Support.

The Start-Up Support for recently recruited junior research group leaders, junior professors and W2 tenure-track professors enables the development of a new research project within the Cluster.

The Research Prize is open to all junior research group leaders, junior professors and W2 tenure-track professors in the Cluster who wish to develop their innovative research idea into a project proposal.

ImmunoSensation is always eager to support innovative project ideas within our core topics. Therefore, the Executive Board also accepts requests for support of excellent research approaches at any time, even outside the framework of the Seed Funding.
For further details please contact us


BONFOR is a junior research programme of the Faculty of Medicine at Bonn University. The Faculty of Medicine provides funding to support highly motivated young scientists in the form of student scholarships, start-up funding, Gerok scholarships for clinicians, junior researcher support and BONFOR bonus payments. BONFOR supports young researchers with a high success rate on their way to independent DFG funding.

more information

Clinician Scientist Program

The Faculty of Medicine has made the strategic decision to complement the ImmunoSensation cluster of excellence with a major program to support young clinician scientists at the University Hospital Bonn for projects directly related to the cluster topics.

This program emerged from the Else-Kröner clinician-scientist program that had been established in May 2011. The program exclusively funds young clinician scientists who are committed to a combined research and clinical career. Funding includes the clinician scientist position, additional staff and consumables. The clinician scientists will preferentially work in the laboratories of ImmunoSensation2 members. This guarantees close interaction and fruitful collaboration between clinicians and basic scientists.

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Advanced Clinician Scientist Program

This programm offers physicians the opportunity, to invest 50% of their working hours for research activities over a period of six years. They will be closely integrated into the research networks of the Cluster of Excellence ImmunoSensation². The programm aims to foster translational research by closely linking basic and clinical research research.

more information

Argelander Grants

The Argelander Grants offer comprehensive support, specifically adapted to your career stage and goals. Besides financial support, the program offers personalized guidance offers and trainings in order to persue a career inside or outside academia.

more information