Jobs in Structural Biology and Related Fields

Director of Research

European Synchrotron Research Facility, Grenoble, France
Application deadline: 28 Feb 2014

The European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) is a multinational research institute, currently funded by 20 countries, whose access is based on scientific excellence. It operates
one of the world’s most brilliant synchrotron X-ray sources and some 30 world-class beamlines. More than 6000 scientists from universities and research centres around the globe visit the institute every year to carry out experiments in fundamental and applied research.
The ESRF has an annual budget of ~100M€, employs 600 staff from 40 countries and operates as a private company (Société civile) under French law.


The two Directors of Research guide 200 staff in the Experiments Division on the implementation of an ambitious scientific and technical programme grounded on the use of state-of-the-art ESRF X-ray beamlines. They provide vision and leadership at the international level, promoting a world-class experimental programme involving several thousand external scientists from the funding countries and worldwide. Working in tandem, each Research Director has an area of responsibility linked to her/his scientific experience and background.
Today, the ESRF is seeking to recruit the Director of Research in the areas of life sciences, chemistry and soft matter science. Together with the Director of Research for the physical sciences, he/she will be responsible for:
· The promotion of the ESRF scientific excellence in the funding countries and worldwide.
· The operation of the beamlines and the support to the scientific user communities, including the management of the beam time assignment process.
· The successful delivery of a new beamline portfolio in the context of the ESRF Upgrade Programme, and generally for meeting the objectives of this Programme.
· The preparation of future programme plans, financial estimates and staffing plans.
· The Division’s capital and running expenditure budget (about 12 M€).
· The management of the Division’s staff, 75% of whom are scientists.The relations with (presently) eleven Collaborating Research Groups operating national beamlines at the ESRF.
· The in-house research programme enabling the Experiments Division scientists to carry out state-of-the-art scientific investigations.
· The planning and implementation of the beamline renewal and refurbishment programmes in coordination with the ESRF technical support Divisions.

The Directors of Research, the Director of the Accelerator and Source Division and the Director of Administration constitute the Senior Management of the ESRF reporting directly to the Director General. The Directors of Research are given the opportunity to pursue their own research interest with appropriate resources (e.g. one post-doc or one thesis student).


The successful candidate for this particular post will be an internationally renowned scientist in a field related to the life sciences, soft matter and/or chemistry. He/she will have extensive experience in the use of synchrotron radiation for cutting-edge research, along with proven leadership, management and administrative skills. The working language at the ESRF is English. Knowledge of French would be a significant advantage. Further information on the post can be obtained from either Francesco Sette at or Itziar Echeverria at