1. Skip to Menu
  2. Skip to Content
  3. Skip to Footer

For current Young Investigators and Installation Grantees


Since its launch in 2000, the EMBO Young Investigator Programme (YIP) supports independent scientists that are selected as EMBO Young Investigators and Installation Grantees. 


Programme members receive extensive support for networking interactions and other career development opportunities. Some highlights are listed below and summarized in a downloadable infographic.  A more complete list, with details of the levels of support and how to apply for these, is provided in the programme guide (pdf). Relevant forms are included in the downloads box to the right.


  • The programme offers both an annual EMBO Young Investigator meeting for all former and current programme members and more specialized meetings, allowing interaction between programme members. 
  • Networking funds support a wide range of other interactions between programme members – including institute visits and joint group meetings. Student exchanges and meeting grants allow interactions between current EMBO Young Investigator and Installation Grant labs with the wider scientific community.  Additionally, programme members organizing a conference/course can receive sponsorship.
  • The programme raises the profile of Young Investigators by offering EMBO Young Investigator Lecture Grants to current programme members, who are invited as speakers at international conferences, and by including their details in the EMBO directory.
  • Support is provided for your lab members – for example, through the annual YIP PhD Course, a course run by Young Investigators for students in Young Investigator laboratories.  Further support for your growing lab includes access to EMBL Core Facilities.

An overview of the financial award for Installation Grantees and Young Investigators selected in 2014 or later is provided in the programme guide (pdf).  For Young Investigators selected before 2014, the payment mechanism was different: please contact the Young Investigator Programme office with any queries relating to this.


Upcoming events, deadlines, and other opportunities within the programme are  included in the bi-monthly eNewsletter sent to programme members.  

Young Investigator PhD Course 


Organized by EMBO Young Investigators, this PhD course provides students working in the Young Investigators' labs with a broad overview of the biological sciences alongside training in skills required for a scientific career. The international scientific experience of the course organizers and the diversity of both teachers and participants – in terms of scientific interest and nationality – help shape the students' future perspectives.


A major focus is on soft-skills including training in scientific writing and communicating science to a lay-audience. Participants have the chance to practice presenting a poster and giving a short talk, receiving constructive feedback on their talks. An intensive training session provides the opportunity to further improve presentation skills. Practical exercises on grant proposals and reviewing papers are included in the programme, as well as scientific lectures.


The 2016 course will take place from 5 - 10 December 2016.  The new programme is  available here.



Application is closed. 

Travel & accommodation

Please note, participants (or their labs) must cover their own travel costs. For advice on travel to Heidelberg please see travel to EMBO.


EMBO organises and covers the cost of participant accommodation on a shared-twin basis during the course and on the arrival /departure days either-side of the 6-days of teaching (i.e a two bed room shared with one other participant for 7 nights from 4.12.2016, departing 11.12.2016).


Young Investigator Meeting 2017


17-19 May 2017


The annual EMBO Young Investigator Meeting provides a forum for the members of the programme to network and exchange ideas. Young Investigators present their research and informal discussions give the opportunity to exchange ideas on scientific or general interest topics.



The official programme will start at lunch-time on Wednesday 17 May 2017 and finishes mid-afternoon on Friday 19 May 2017. The meeting comprises of short talks from all attendees, lots of time for networking, and a session where you can learn more about the YIP programme and provide input on its activities. A discussion session on research assessment practices is also being organized. Finally, optional training workshops will be held on the morning of 17 May. 



The meeting will take place at the EMBL in Heidelberg, Germany.


EMBL, Meyerhofstr. 1, D69117 Heidelberg

web: www.embl.de



All current and former EMBO Young Investigators and EMBO Installation Grantees are invited to participate, as well as EMBL group leaders. Registration is now closed, if you would like to participate but have not registered please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .



The YIP office will arrange accommodation for registered participants. The meeting hotel is:


Hotel Villa Toskana, Hamburger Str. 4-10, 69181 Leimen

phone: (34) 93 486 88 00 | web: www.hotel-villa-toskana.de



Participants should please book their own travel. If you are arriving to Frankfurt international, and provide your travel details by 18 April, we will arrange airport transfers for you. Please see travel to EMBO for information/advice on travelling to Heidelberg.


Please keep us updated with your travel plans, so we can arrange the programme, airport transfers and hotel accommodation accordingly.  


Reasonable travel expenses will be reimbursed after the meeting (please refer to the travel guidelines for Young Investigators). 


About Young Investigators


About Young Investigators


EMBO Young Investigators are some of Europe's best young group leaders selected for the high quality of their research. There are currently 74 current EMBO Young Investigators who, together with 291 former members of the programme and recipients of an EMBO Installation Grant, form a prestigious and vibrant scientific network of over 450 life scientists.


A dedicated twitter feed for the programme exists; please follow for news from Young Investigators and Installation Grantees. Awards won by programme members are also listed on the awards tab.


Twitter icon

Find a Young Investigator


Current EMBO Young Investigators are featured in the EMBO communities resource at people.embo.org, together with all EMBO Members.


If you are looking for a speaker and plan to apply for an Young Investigator Lecture Grant to support their talk, a list of Young Investigators eligible for lecture grants in 2016, sorted by EMBO subject area is also available.


Additionally, the Young Investigator database lists all 365 current and former EMBO Young Investigators. Please browse the database to find out more about their research. You can also search by keyword to find a Young Investigator working in a particular area.


A separate database of Installation Grantees is linked from the Installation Grant webpages.



PhD students and postdocs working with current EMBO Young Investigator and Installation Grant benefit from EMBO training opportunities, networking events and laboratory exchanges. The laboratories of former members also have access to many of these activities.


A list of vacancies in EMBO Young Investigator and Installation Grantee laboratories is provided below, and updated every 1-2 weeks. Please contact the EMBO Young Investigator directly (using the contact details on the linked page) with any queries about these vacancies. Current members of the programme are highlighted in bold.


PhD Vacancies

Postdoc Vacancies

Other Vacancies




*= Vacancy is part of a wider call, positions are also available with other group leaders, not all of whom are members of the Young Investigator Programme


Speculative applications to laboratories not listed above are also possible. Please our EMBO Young Investigator Database and EMBO Installation Grants Database to find laboratories whose research interests you and send a CV/cover letter to the PI using the contact details listed on their lab website.




EMBO Young Investigators regularly win honours or awards for their research. Please find below a list of some of the awards won recently by current or former members of the programme.


Many Young Investigators (197) have also been awarded an ERC starting, consolidator or advanced grant since ERC grants were first awarded in 2007. Additionally, 110 current or former programme Young Investigators have been elected to EMBO Membership.  



Awards won by Young Investigators in 2016

Young Investigator Selected in award
Richard Benton 2011 EMBO Gold Medal
Ben Lehner 2010
Matteo Iannacone 2015  European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL)Young Investigator Award
Duncan Odom 2009 Genetics Society (UK) Mary Lyon Prize
Johannes Zuber 2009  German Cancer Prize
Lori Passmore 2014  MRC/Royal Society Suffrage Science Scheme Award



Awards won by Young Investigators in 2015

Young Investigator Selected in award
Patrick Cramer 2000  Arthur Burkhardt Prize
Helen Walden 2011 Biochemical Society Colworth Medal
Victoria Cowling 2013 British Society for Cell Biology Women in Cell Biology Early Career Medal
Evi Soutoglou 2012 CNRS Bronze Medal
Thomas Lecuit 2003 CNRS Silver Medal
Melina Schuh 2012 EMBL John Kendrew Young Scientist Award
Ido Amit 2013 EMBO Gold Medal
Sarah Teichmann 2003
Thomas Wollert 2014 Eppendorf / Nature Eppendorf Award for Young European Investigators
Rut Carballido Lopez 2011

Irène Joliot-Curie Young Female Scientist Prize


Thomas Lecuit 2003 Liliane Bettencourt Prize for Life Sciences
Steven West 2014 Lister Institute Lister Prize
M. Madan Babu 2010

The Royal Society Francis Crick Award Lecture (2016) 

Frank Uhlmann 2002 elected as a Fellow of The Royal Society
Richard Benton 2011 Swiss National Science Foundation, National Latsis Prize
Óscar Fernández Capetillo 2008 Carmen y Severo Ochoa Research Award in Molecular Biology



Awards won by Young Investigators in 2014

Young Investigator Selected in award
Manuel Thery 2013 American Society for Cell Biology Early Career Life Scientist Award 
M. Madan Babu 2009 Biochemical Society Colworth Medal
Melina Schuh 2012 Biochemical Society Early Career Research Award (Cells)
Juan Martín-Serrano 2008 Biochemical Society The GlaxoSmithKline Award
Sarah Teichmann 2003 Biophysical Society Michael and Kate Bárány Award
Anne Bertolotti 2004 British Society for Cell Biology Hooke Medal
Brian Luke 2013 C.H.S.-Foundation Chica and Heinz Schaller Research Award
Jacob Hanna 2012 Selected by Cell in their list "40 under 40" most innovative young scientists
David Keays 2012
Maya Schuldiner 2011
Aurelio Teleman 2010
Óscar Fernández-Capetillo 2008
Benjamin Prud'homme 2011 CNRS Bronze Medal
Sophie Martin 2009 EMBO Gold medal
Thomas Wollert 2014 German Society for Cell Biology Walther-Flemming Medal
Uri Alon 2000 HFSP Nakasone Award
Kim Jensen 2013 LEO Pharma Research Foundation (LPRF) in association with the European Society for Dermatological Research (ESDR) Gold prize
Thomas Richards 2012 Leverhulme Trust Philip Leverhulme Prize
Melina Schuh 2012 Lister Institute Lister Prize
M. Madan Babu 2009 Lister Institute Lister Prize
Jason Carroll 2010 Louis-Jeantet Foundation Louis-Jeantet Young Investigator Career Award
Felipe Cortés Ledesma 2014 SEBBM Young Investigator Prize
Luca Jovine 2009 Swedish Society for Biochemistry, Biophysics and Molecular Biology Hugo Theorells prize
Sophie Martin 2009 Swiss Society for Biochemistry Friedrich Miescher-Award
Robert Klose 2010 The Royal Society Francis Crick Award Lecture
Paloma Más 2007  Carmen and Severo Ochoa Research Prize for Molecular Biology
Dirk Schübeler 2006  ESCI Award for Excellence in Biomedical Investigation
Frédéric Saudou 2002  Lounsbery Prize for Biology and Medicine
M. Madan Babu 2009  Protein Science Young Investigator Award


Young Investigators


EMBO chooses some of the best young group leaders in Europe, through a highly competitive annual selection to join the EMBO Young Investigator programme.


During their three-year tenure in the programme, EMBO Young Investigators receive a range of financial and practical benefits. These support them during a critical stage of their career, and help them realize their potential as world-class researchers.


A key aspect of the programme is networking. EMBO Young Investigators benefit from a vibrant and broad network of over 450 scientists, made up of current and former Young Investigators, and recipients of an EMBO Installation Grant.


Other initiatives such as EMBO Young Investigator Lecture Grants aim to raise the profile of the young group leaders.

Apply to be a Young Investigator




Applications are accepted from candidates who meet the following criteria:

  • Have been an independent group leader for at least one year at the pre-application deadline
  • Have been an independent group leader for less than four years on 1 January in the year of application.
  • Have at least two years of post PhD scientific experience and an excellent track record.
  • Work in the life sciences in an EMBC Member State or an EMBC Associate Member State (currently India and Singapore). Special provisions are made for scientists based at Taiwanese institutes, as part of the Taiwanese-EMBO|EMBC cooperation agreement.
  • Have obtained sufficient funding to run their laboratory.
  • Have published at least one last author research paper in an international peer reviewed journal from independent work carried out in their own laboratory.
  • Are 40 years old or younger on 1 January in the year of application, unless exceptional circumstances have significantly delayed career progression.
  • Are able to attend an interview in Heidelberg on 9 or 10 October 2017.


Please note:

  • We accept 'last author' research papers that are in submission by the deadline (1 April each year). Last author reviews are not accepted.
  • For female candidates with children, both the limit of four-years since independence and the age limit of 40 are automatically extended by one year per child.
  • For male applicants with children, the limits can be extended by the actual time taken off as paternity leave or - if their partner is working at least 80% FTE - 1.5 months per child, whichever is longer.
  • Illness and extended military service are considered as exceptional circumstances on a case-by-case basis. Special provision may also be made for clinical scientists. If you feel your circumstances warrant an extension of the eligibility periods, please contact the EMBO office for advice before applying.
  • When defining independence we take into account whether the scientist writes grants in their own name; reports directly to funding agencies; is able to submit manuscripts as a last author and can be responsible for supervising their own graduate students and/or post docs.



Application to the EMBO Young Investigator Programme is via a two-stage application process. Please check the eligibility criteria before applying.


Application process 2016

Applications are accepted via an online system. The pre-application deadline for the 2017 call is 1 April 14:00 CEST. 

Key dates

Deadline for pre-application

1 April, 14:00 CEST*

Pre-application results

23 May

Full applications invited

23 May

Deadline for full application

20 June

Panel Interviews

9 & 10 October

Committee meeting

11 October


Application process


Stage 1, pre-application:


  1. Applicants are asked to submit basic information about their scientific career and track record via our online application system as well as:

    * Important note: The details of the three referees should be submitted as soon as possible – referees must complete their reference in the online system by 1 April. See the YIP Application Guidelines for more details

  2. After the pre-application deadline on 1 April, we will confirm that the pre-application has been received and is complete.
  3. Pre-applications of eligible applicants are sent to the EMBO Young Investigator Committee for pre-screening.
  4. Following pre-screening approximately 50 applicants are invited to submit a full application and attend an interview with the selection committee. All candidates are informed of the outcome of their pre-application by email.

Stage 2, full application:


  1. Applicants who pass the pre-screen step are asked to submit their full application (including the full application form (doc)) via the online system. The deadline for submission of the full application is 20 June. Applicants should refer to the YIP Application Guidelines when completing their full application. 
  2. Full applications are sent to an EMBO Member expert in the area of the applicant's research for a confidential review.
  3. Candidates are interviewed by the EMBO Young Investigator Committee on 9 & 10 October 2017. 
  4. A final decision is made at the EMBO Young Investigator Committee meeting on 11 October, and candidates will be informed of the outcome of their application by email.



The EMBO Young Investigator Committee, is looking for the best and most promising young independent researchers in Europe. The primary selection criterion applied by all EMBO committees is scientific excellence.


The aspects considered in particular by the EMBO Young Investigator Committee when making their decisions are:


Track record

  • Are the publications to date an indication that this is an outstanding scientist?
    • Please note that EMBO is a signatory of DORA and does not use journal-based metrics such as impact factor for evaluation.
  • Has the applicant shown a willingness to change research area, which is an indication of an ability to tackle new and important problems?


  • Is the proposed research ambitious and likely to lead to novel contributions in the field?
  • Does the applicant have the potential to become a future leader in their field?

Group and Research environment

  • Is the research environment conducive to competitive research?
  • Are the number of laboratory members and the available funds sufficient to undertake the described research?


  • Is the candidate intellectually and financially independent? What is the influence of former supervisors and institute heads on the candidate's current research?


Selection process:

  1. At the pre-application stage the committee judge whether the initial application is competitive enough to be considered for the award. About 50 applicants are invited to submit a full application and attend an interview.
  2. Full applications are requested and sent to an EMBO Member expert in the area of the applicant's research for a confidential review.
  3. Candidates attend a panel interview with a subset of the committee. Candidates are asked to deliver a 10-minute presentation summarizing their current results, projects and future directions. The presentation will be followed by 10 minutes of discussion. A logical and convincing presentation can be a distinguishing factor between the excellent applications received.

  4. The committee makes a final decision on each application after the interviews based on the performance at interview, the information provided in the application form and a confidential review by an EMBO Member expert in the candidate's field.
  5. All candidates are informed by email of the outcome of their full application.



EMBO Young Investigators benefit from extensive networking opportunities, and other financial and practical support.


EMBO Young Investigators receive a financial award of 15,000 euros in their second year. All current EMBO Young Investigators can also apply for small grants of up to 10,000 euros from funds provided by EMBO Council.


The EMBO Young Investigator Programme is unique in its focus on networking. EMBO Young Investigators are formally programme members for 3-years, and during this time are encouraged to interact with each other, EMBL group leaders and the growing network of former Young Investigators.


Funded activities are summarised in a graphical overview and include:

Detailed information about the benefits are listed in our programme guide (pdf).






Visit, parcel or courier address

Meyerhofstrasse 1,
69117 Heidelberg, Germany

Postal address
Postfach 1022.40,
69012 Heidelberg, Germany

T. +49 6221 8891 0
F. +49 6221 8891 200
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.