PhD or Postdoc (m/f/x) on Pandemics – Infodemics

37077 Göttingen
03 Feb 2023
25 Apr 2023
Job Type
PhD Studentship
Employment - Hours
Full time
Fixed term

For the Max Planck Research Group of Viola Priesemann we seek to fill two positions for

PhD or Postdoc (m/f/x) on Pandemics – Infodemics


The positions are an open topic within the broad research field of pandemics, infodemics, and their impact on society. As the COVID-19 pandemic generated an immense disruption to society, we now have a rich data set to study its impact – together with newly available large-scale social media data and theoretical approaches. On that basis, our aim is to understand how information and misinformation, basic principles of interactions, and policies influence contact behavior, segregation, and collective dynamics. Any creative, complementary approach in that area is very much welcome. For this work, close collaboration with our colleagues from epidemiology, sociology, and communication science in Berlin, Karlsruhe, Lübeck, London or Utrecht is possible and encouraged. If you are interested in the self-regulation of social networks (and the failure thereof), please apply!


Your profile

We are looking for creative, enthusiastic, and motivated researchers to join our team. The position requires a strong interest in either analytical approaches or modelling or analysis of social systems (e.g. Bayesian inference). For the position, you should hold a Master’s degree (or a PhD) in quantitative sciences, e.g., physics, data science, sociology, mathematics, machine learning, engineering, or related fields. A background in complex systems, quantitative sociology, control theory, or Bayesian inference is a plus, but not required. While the team is mainly rooted in physics, we also look with interest at applications from candidates with other backgrounds. The language for our communications is English; thus, fluency in both written and spoken English is required. German language skills are not required. For us, the central input from our members is their creativity and enthusiasm, and their genuine interest in tackling their research question. Embedded in our interdisciplinary team, we work together at carving out how to tackle your question and work jointly towards its solution. We warmly welcome applications from people of any background, female candidates are encouraged to apply! We offer opportunities to follow additional university courses and participate in teaching, supervise students, and build your profile.

Our offer

We are offering excellent working conditions in a highly international and interdisciplinary research environment. We provide fertile grounds and guidance to follow your research interest and curiosity.

The PhD positions are initially limited to three years, with the possibility of extension. The salary and working hours are in accordance with the funding guidelines of the Max Planck Society for junior scientists. The salary is 2/3 of E 13 TVÖD Bund. Furthermore, we offer work-life balance programs and health promotion services. In close collaboration with the Georg August University, a structured PhD program is offered in the graduate program of the Physics Department, or the graduate program on Physics of Biological and Complex Systems. The starting date is flexible.

The Postdoc positions are open for three years, with potential extension, in accordance with federal regulations. The salary and working hours are in accordance with the funding guidelines of the Max Planck Society for Postdocs. The salary is E 13 TVÖD Bund. Furthermore, we offer work-life balance programs and health promotion services. The Max Planck Society and the Göttingen Campus offer structured mentoring programs and career development courses. Participation in teaching and supervision as well as the acquisition of additional funding is not necessary, but supported and welcome. The starting date is flexible.

The Max-Planck Society is committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified individuals. Furthermore, the Max Planck Society seeks to increase the number of women in those areas where they are underrepresented and therefore explicitly encourages women to apply.


Your application

Please send your application to with the subject line containing “PhD/PostDoc Application pandemics-infodemics”. The application should contain a single PDF with a motivation letter, CV, transcript of records, and contacts of up to three referees. The group is part of the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, the University of Göttingen, and the Cluster of Excellence Multiscale Bioimaging. The Max Planck Institute focuses on complex systems, statistical physics, and active matter, with both experimental and theoretical approaches, and employs about 300 people. It is embedded in a university town with 28,000 students across all disciplines. The Göttingen Campus has its overarching research foci in living networks, sustainability, and dynamics of change, and includes four Max Planck Institutes, the German Primate Center, the Campus Institute Data Science, and the Campus Center for Dynamics of Biological Networks.

Applications are accepted until April 30th, 2023, or until the positions are filled. A first, optional evaluation will be done on February 15th. By sending your application you consent with sharing your application details with the selection team.

Should you have any questions, please visit our website and

Please contact

Prof. Dr. Viola Priesemann

Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization
Prof. Dr. Viola Priesemann
Am Faßberg 17
D-37077 Göttingen

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