CERN’s Fellowship Programme 2016

Google+ Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr

Application Deadline: September 5th 2016

Have you recently graduated from university or an advanced technical institute? Are you interested in working for one or two years in an international environment at the forefront of research? In which case, you may be interested in CERN’s Fellowship Programme.

Within the Fellowship Programme, we have integrated a Graduate Engineering Training (GET) scheme for engineering graduates who are looking for professional experience in a wide range of engineering and technical fields. Candidates should apply through the standard Fellowship programme and will be automatically considered by a panel of CERN experts for a position within the scheme.
CERN is proud to be involved in COFUND a European Commission Horizon 2020 Marie Sk³odowska-Curie Action to stimulate mobility and career development through fellowship programmes. Contract negotiations have been successfully completed with the European Commission and we are offering a limited number of 3-year Fellowships to top-ranked Senior Fellows through the COFUND programme from the November 2015 until the May 2017 committees. A feature of the COFUND programme is the possibility to spend up to 12 months of the Fellow contract at another institute, provided that the work still corresponds to the original project at CERN

The Fellowship Programme awards approximately 200 Fellowships per year. Around half are for research work (experimental or theoretical physics) under a Senior Fellowship and half are for advanced development work and related research in a broad range of applied science, computing and engineering either under a Junior or a Senior Fellowship depending on the qualifications and experience of the individual.

Fellowships are intended for recent graduates from university or higher technical institutes, or university postgraduates who want to work in a research group. Research fellows in experimental or theoretical physics normally have terminated their studies for a doctorate (PhD or equivalent) while Fellowships in applied science, computing and engineering are open to recent graduates at Bachelor level and above. Fellowships are normally granted for two years initially, while extensions for part or all of a third year are granted only in exceptional circumstances.

After having become familiar with the activities of the Laboratory, Fellows are encouraged to contribute to bridging the gap between scientists and the general public by serving as CERN Guides typically 2 hours per month. For further details, please follow this link (link is external).

Eligibility conditions

  • You are a national of a CERN Member or Associate State. However, a limited number of positions are also available to candidates from Non-Member States with a Senior profile. Non-Member State candidates seeking a postdoc in Theoretical Physics should apply here. (link is external) For nationals from Japan, please see our web page on the CERN-Japan Programme (link is external).
  • If you are applying in experimental or theoretical physics, you have a PhD (or are about to finish your thesis).
  • If you are applying in applied science, computing or engineering, you hold a university degree (BSc level or above) or a technical engineer qualification (or are about to graduate).
  • Candidates with an MSc or higher diploma should have no more than 10 years relevant experience (after the MSc).
  • Candidates with only a BSc or technical engineer diploma should have no more than 4 years relevant experience.
  • Candidates who are currently preparing a diploma are eligible to apply. However, they are expected to have obtained their qualification by the time they take up their appointment at CERN.

CERN Staff members are not eligible to apply for a Fellowship.

Individuals who have held a VIA contract at CERN are not eligible to apply for a Fellowship.

Please note that a person may only benefit from Fellow status at CERN for a maximum of 36 months. There is no possibility of exceptions. The minimum duration of a Fellow contract is 6 months.

Documents required

  • a Curriculum Vitae;
  • a list of publications if relevant (for collaborations, please indicate simply the number of publications and only provide details of the most important ones);
  • a photocopy of the last (highest) qualification;
  • three recent letters of recommendation (less than a year old at the deadline for applications) to give as broad as possible overview of your academic and/or professional achievements(*).

Candidates for research fellowships (Theoretical and Experimental Physics) should also include a CV containing:

  • A list of publications to which you have made significantly contributions;
  • Conferences at which you have given presentations;
  • Statement of research interests (if not already included in the application form).

For physics candidates who wish to be considered for both research and applied science types of Fellowship, you are expected to make clear your relevant applied science skillset in your motivations and/or research statement.


  • Financial conditions: Fellows stipends are calculated individually – stipends are competitive and net of tax.
  • Leave: Fellows are entitled to 2.5 days paid leave per month.
  • Insurance: Fellows are covered by CERN’s comprehensive health scheme for themselves and their dependents.
  • Travel expenses: Fellows are entitled to travel expenses for themselves and their family (unless stipulated otherwise on their contract).
  • Fellows may be entitled to an installation grant, family allowance and child allowance. We also offer help with finding suitable accommodation via the Housing Service (link is external).
Selection Procedure

Applications from candidates in particle physics are forwarded by us to the appropriate* National Delegations in the Member States for appraisal. (*The appropriate National Delegation for each candidate is usually considered to be the same as the passport nationality of the candidate. However, applications from Member State candidates who did/are doing their PhD in a different Member State from their passport nationality are generally submitted to that Delegation. If relevant, candidates should state their preference of Member State on their application (in the “Motivation” section)).

Applications in all disciplines from nationals of countries who are Associate Members may be forwarded to a panel of national experts for appraisal.

All applications for Fellowships are considered by the Associates and Fellows Committee which meets twice per year, usually in May and November.

Candidates may be contacted before the Committee but any formal offer of a Fellowship position can only be made by HR Department after the relevant Committee meeting.

Successful applicants are normally expected to take up their appointments within 3 months of the start date they specify in their application form. Changes to the start date can be discussed on a case-by-case basis and exceptions are made for Theoretical physicists who apply for the November committee to start the following autumn.

The results of the Selection Committee are communicated by email to all candidates within 1 week of the Selection Committee date.

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the CERN’s Fellowship Programme 2016 

Comments are closed.