Eye catcher

For any questions, do not hesitate to ask:
Dr. Michael Bussmann Tel.: +49 3581 37523 11,
+49 351 260 2616
Prof. Dr. Justin Calabrese Tel.: +49 3581 37523 71,
Mrs. Inken Köhler Tel.: +49 3581 37523 10,
Mrs. Weronika Mazur Tel.: +49 3581 37523 23,
+49 171 3635554

Place of work:

Working hours:
39 h/week

31 May 2021

Online application
English / German
Job-Id: 85/2021 (1208)

The HZDR is committed to equal opportunity employment and we strongly encourage applications from qualified female candidates. We also carefully consider all applications from job candidates with severe disabilities.

Bautzner Landstraße 400
01328 Dresden

Postdoctoral Researcher (m/f/d): Multiscale, data-intensive research on COVID-19 testing strategies throughout the pandemic

As member of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centers, the HZDR employs about 1,400 people. The Center's focus is on interdisciplinary research in the areas energy, health and matter.

The Center for Advanced Systems Understanding (CASUS) is a German-Polish research center for data-intensive digital systems research. We combine innovative methods from mathematics, theoretical systems research, simulations, data science, and computer science to provide solutions for a range of disciplines - materials science under ambient and extreme conditions, earth system research, systems biology, and autonomous vehicles.

CASUS was jointly founded in August 2019 by the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf, the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics, the Technical University of Dresden and the University of Wroclaw. CASUS is located in the heart of Görlitz at the border between Germany and Poland. The CASUS start-up phase is hosted by the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf and is financed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the Saxon State Ministry of Science and Art. For more information visit https://www.casus.science/home-2/.

The Center for Advanced Systems Understanding (CASUS) invites applications as

Postdoctoral Researcher (m/f/d): Multiscale, data-intensive research on COVID-19 testing strategies throughout the pandemic

Review of applications will begin immediately, but consideration of candidates will continue until the position is filled.

The Earth System Science department is seeking a postdoctoral researcher specializing in data science to: 1) study variation in testing rates and strategies during the COVID-19 pandemic; 2) develop and deploy predictive models for COVID incidence and other quantities; and 3) develop methods for fitting disease transmission models to epidemiological datasets across scales ranging from individual organizations to entire nations.

Job Background and Scope:

The successful candidate (m/f/d) will be part of a team studying how to develop and deploy optimal testing strategies throughout all stages of a pandemic. Topics of interest include how to best deal with severe limitations in testing capacity, and how to develop effective testing strategies for organizations such as schools, retirement homes, and businesses. The candidate (m/f/d) will work with and further extend a growing, multiscale epidemiological database with resolution ranging from individual facilities (e.g., retirement homes) to entire nations. The work will focus first on the state of Saxony in Germany, but will also aim to identify general solutions that can be applied more broadly.  The successful candidate (m/f/d) will have the breadth of experience to shift between traditional statistical approaches and data-driven machine learning techniques as appropriate. In addition to disseminating results via traditional academic outlets such as peer review publications and conference presentations, the candidate (m/f/d) will also contribute results and tools to the project’s web platform (www.where2test.de).


  • Analyze an existing multiscale epidemiological dataset to understand variation in testing rates, and to identify opportunities to improve testing strategies;
  • Develop and deploy predictive models for COVID incidence, testing needs, and other quantities;
  • Develop fitting and inferential methods for disease transmission models applied to organizations, the state of Saxony, and all of Germany;
  • Work with our team to facilitate a coordinated approach to optimizing testing strategies across spatial scales and through different pandemic stages;
  • Publish results in academic, peer-reviewed journals;
  • Present results at scientific meetings.


  • PhD in statistics, data science, data engineering, epidemiology, or a related field
  • A solid background in mathematics, statistics, and data science
  • Excellent programming skills in data science languages such as R and Python
  • Strong motivation to work in a collaborative environment
  • Excellent communication skills in English and in a professional context (presentation of research results at scientific meetings, colloquial discussions, writing of manuscripts)
  • Fluency in German to facilitate interaction with public health authorities and other data holders in Saxony and elsewhere in Germany
  • Evidence of the ability to publish results in top peer reviewed journals
  • Experience in epidemiology is advantageous but is not required

We offer:

  • A vibrant research community in an open, diverse, and international work environment
  • Scientific excellence and extensive professional networking opportunities
  • The employment contract is limited until 31.12.2022.
  • Salary and social benefits in conformity with the provisions of the Collective Agreement TVöD-Bund
  • 30 Vacation Days per year
  • Company pension scheme (VBL)
  • A good work/life balance for which we offer assistance in the form of:
    • possibility to work part-time

    • flexible working hours

    • in-house health management

Kindly submit your completed application (including cover letter, CV, diplomas/transcripts, etc.) only via our Online-application-system.