Janelia welcomes you to become part of shaping this new research program in 4D Cellular Physiology

The application deadline for Group Leader and Senior Group Leader positions is November 15. We encourage you to apply early as we will examine applications throughout and may extend early invitations for interviews.

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The Group Leader and Senior Group Leaders positions at Janelia offer unparalleled opportunities to focus your time, energy, and creativity on what you enjoy doing most — SCIENCE.

Now is a particularly exciting time to join Janelia’s new research area — 4D Cellular Physiology. Our first cohort of recruits will play a key role in shaping the science and intellectual culture of this new and exciting 15 - year research program. You will be welcomed into a supportive scientific community at Janelia and will be joined by 15 - 18 group leaders who will join Janelia in the next several years.

We believe that Janelia will provide fertile ground for your research program in 4D Cellular Physiology, because you will be:

  • Immersed in a unique intellectual and collaborative environment, surrounded by scientists who seek cellular, mechanistic explanations of physiological phenomena and who can complement one another by approaching problems through the lens of different scales, disciplines, or techniques. When brought together, a critical mass of collaborative biologists and tool developers at Janelia working on 4DCP will generate discoveries and new tools beyond our immediate imagination

  • Able to closely collaborate with talented technology developers (or biologists if you are a tool developer). Janelia is a wonderland for biological visualization (light and electron microscopes and probe development) and is also home to very talented computer scientists and theorists. We also will start new Project Teams related to 4DCP, including CellMap and future efforts to build new live-cell sensors.

  • At an epicenter for the emerging field of 4D Cellular Physiology. Our 4DCP workshops have been stimulating, and Janelia will continue to engage the scientific community in the 4DCP effort, including hosting visitors for collaborations, holding virtual and physical conferences, hosting summer undergraduate students and offering boot camp courses. As a Janelia Group Leader or Senior Group Leader, you can help shape this global think tank and engage in our programs and partnerships.

We are interested in talented individuals from all career stages, disciplines, and backgrounds, who, in their future work, are interested in cellular/molecular explanations of physiological problems (see some of our Workshop Talks).

However, we are not narrowing our scope for recruitment to a particular organ, disease, or biological process.

In the HHMI spirit of “People, Not Projects,” we believe in identifying individuals who will thrive and contribute at Janelia. We also will be looking for synergies that emerge through the application process so that we can assemble a critical mass of group leaders and their trainees who can interact and tackle certain problems. See below for additional information.

  • We have positions for Group Leaders and Senior Group Leaders, potentially up to 8 in this coming year and up to 15 - 18 over the next few years. Most hires will be in the 4D Cellular Physiology Research Area. We are also searching for a scientist to lead the 4DCP effort. Jennifer Lippincott-Schwartz is serving as the interim Head. We are also looking for 4DCP-related hires in Molecular Tools and Imaging (led by Luke Lavis) and Computation & Theory (led by Kristin Branson). Joint area appointments are possible. If you are already a Group Leader (e.g., an assistant, associate, or full professor) and are interested in 4DCP, you can send us a confidential inquiry in advance of a full application. We expect most appointments to start in the early fall of 2022. However, we also have the option to delay appointments until fall 2023 for individuals who want to apply now but then finish their postdoc or thesis work.

  • We are interested in “cluster” hires, either ones that are brought to our attention or opportunities for synergy that we see from independent applicants. This will allow critical mass of expertise of systems, techniques, and problems to coalesce in a few areas at Janelia. We will have in-person interviews in a 2-day symposia format on January 26 - 27, Feb 2 - 3 and Feb 10 - 11, which will allow applicants to meet one another. We can invite strong candidates back to Janelia, individually or in groups, after the symposia.

  • We are interested in recruiting Group Leaders and Senior Group Leaders who want to incorporate both tool building and discovery science in their own research program.

  • We are open to research efforts that utilize different research organisms. Janelia has outstanding animal facilities (mouse, zebrafish, fly) with expert staff who support Group Leader efforts using these systems. We also are interested in recruiting researchers working on organoids or bioengineered tissues as well as those working on non-vertebrate model or non-model organisms.

  • If you don’t yet have an established track record in tissue cell biology but wish to work in this area and have good ideas, we welcome your application.

  • We are committed to diversity.

  • We are committed to building an inclusive and supportive work environment and campus community.

  • We are committed to mentoring at all levels, from our recent college graduates to our postdocs to our Group Leaders.

  • We want to recruit Group Leaders and Senior Group Leaders who share these values.

The Group Leader or Senior Group Leader position offers an unparalleled opportunity to focus your time, energy, and creativity on research on what you enjoy doing most — SCIENCE. Supported by internal funding and outstanding scientific and administrative staff, group leaders can work at the bench and analyze data alongside their lab members. They have time to think deeply about science and have the freedom to pursue difficult, long-term projects, including ones that might not be fashionable for traditional grant support. Collaboration with other laboratories is highly encouraged in Janelia’s scientific culture. Interdisciplinary thinking, technology development, and tool building also permeate our unique scientific environment. Janelia’s labs are small, which allows Group Leaders to maintain a close connection to their science and enhances inter-lab interactions. Lab efforts are greatly enhanced by Janelia’s Support Teams, which are run by professional staff who provide a range of high-level research services rarely found in universities.

Additional Information on the Group Leader or Senior Group Leader Position:

We are looking for talented and passionate scientists who have the potential for doing transformative research and want to stay closely connected with science, gathering/analyzing data, or building technologies themselves. We welcome applications from talented postdocs and graduate students who are ready to start their own lab, scientists working in industry, and even individuals who have taken a hiatus from science. Our group leaders come from many disciplines, including biology, chemistry, computer science, physics, and engineering.

In addition to scientific potential, we are looking for individuals who will become good mentors for trainees, are eager to share their expertise, and will contribute, through their kindness and comradery, to our Janelia community of scientists and non-scientists. We want to bring others to our community who embody the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

  • 100% internal funding from HHMI, no grant writing, and teaching is minimal and optional.

  • Small group size, and hands-on research is expected. Labs have 2 full-time scientists (in addition to the GL) in the first 5 years and 4 full-time scientists in years 5 - 10. Senior Group Leaders have a lab size of 6 people. Labs interact in a highly collaborative environment.

  • Senior Group Leaders are expected to mentor early-career group leaders and to provide advice to the Head of the Research Area.

  • Appointed for up to 10 years with a review at 5 years. Senior Group Leaders are appointed for 14 years with a review at 7 years. The mid-term review is not focused on conventional academic measures, such as publishing in highly selective journals, but evaluates the problems being tackled, influence on the field, and an ability to work with other Janelia scientists through collaboration, constructive criticism, and mentoring.

  • Toward the end of the 10-year term, a Group Leader or Senior Group Leader can apply for an HHMI Investigator position, which, if successful, can be transferred to eligible host institutions in the US. Alternatively, the Group Leader or Senior Group Leader will still receive a generous transition package that can be used to start a lab at any academic institution.

Don’t just send the same application to Janelia as you are sending to other places.

Stop and think: if applying for traditional funding was not an issue, what would you want to do, and how might it influence a field? Why do you think that you are a good fit for Janelia’s scientific environment? Share your thoughts, vision, and values, and we will take notice; we want to learn about you as an individual and your ideas, which cannot be captured by a CV.

To learn more about the application materials and apply, go to our application portal. If you have questions, please contact Zari Zavala-Ruiz.

To learn more about the application materials and apply, go to our application portal.