The DSMZ is an equal opportunity employer and certified by the audit "berufundfamilie".

Job offers

Job offer 15/23

To build a global biodata resource center

the Leibniz Institute DSMZ-German Collection of Microorganisms and Cell Cultures GmbH establishes an integrated suite of scientific databases of fundamental relevance for life sciences. The databases include BRENDA, SILVA, LPSN, BacDive and TYGS which are developed in a highly coordinated manner. A dedicated team of 22 scientists and software engineers creates a common research data infrastructure which will significantly improve the access to curated and standardized biological data. The resulting data platform DSMZ Digital Diversity will provide an integrated resource and will allow to link and comprehensively analyze the different types of scientific data from all domains of life sciences. For more information visit

                         Scientist Microbial Ecology & Taxonomy (m/f/d)

The position has a salary level according to TV-L 13 and is initially limited to 2 years with the perspective to become a permanent position. The position is offered as full time (39.8 hours per week).

SILVA provides comprehensive quality checked ribosomal RNA reference sequence databases and accompanying web services and tools. Our datasets are used by thousands of researchers worldwide as a basis for their research. Therefore, quality is an extremely important part of all our work, including the software development behind SILVA.

As a member of the SILVA curation team, you will be primarily responsible for the alignment of the database offer with the scientific needs of the research community, like microbial ecologists. Particularly, you will be involved in the curation of our reference alignment (alignment seed), sequence-based reference sets required by the SILVA pipeline and in the SILVA taxonomy. The SILVA taxonomy is mostly a secondary data resource that integrates information from several external resources of nomenclature and classification but also includes defining and naming clades of uncultured organisms.

Your responsibilities:

  • Adapting the SILVA database and tools towards current needs in microbial ecology
  • Curating the SILVA taxonomy with respect to international developments
  • Curating and extending the SILVA reference alignment
  • Curating reference sets for the SILVA pipeline
  • Manually classifying the sequences of the SILVA Ref NR datasets according to the SILVA taxonomy
  • Providing input for improvements of the curation system and the SILVA services
  • Maintain information on the SILVA website
  • Answering user requests within the SILVA helpdesk
  • Running the SILVA pipeline to calculate releases in cooperation with the team
  • Presentation of results in workshops and connecting with the expert communities.

You offer:

  • Ph.D., Diploma, or Master’s degree in biology or equivalent practical experience in taxonomic curation
  • Fluent in English / knowledge in German is beneficial
  • 5+ years of experience in taxonomic and alignment curation, or 3+ years with an advanced degree
  • Quality-orientation
  • Proven ability in writing scientific publications
  • Ability to effectively communicate with technical team members as well as users
  • Experience in ribosomal RNA projects
  • Willingness to undergo regular further training
  • Willingness to undertake occasional business travel

We offer:

  • An interdisciplinary working environment with frequent exchange of experience
  • Direct involvement in building a research data infrastructure
  • Motivated colleagues and a pleasant working atmosphere in a scientific area
  • Further development and support of the scientific web services of the DSMZ
  • Plenty of room for creativity & challenging topics
  • Participation in the selection of personal hardware
  • Opportunities for further education and training
  • An employer certified according to audit berufundfamilie®, therefore flexible possibilities to combine work and family life.

This position can be located in Bremen or Braunschweig, Germany.

The DSMZ is funded by the State of Lower Saxony and the German Federal government and is a member of the Leibniz Association. The Leibniz Association strives to increase the proportion of female scientists and encourages female candidates to apply. Disabled applicants with identical technical and personal qualifications will be preferentially selected. The DSMZ is an equal opportunity employer, supports balanced work-life career development, and holds the certificate of the audit berufundfamilie®.

For further information please contact Lorenz Reimer (lorenz.reimer(at) Please send your complete application documents including a CV, motivation letter, summary of master/PhD thesis, copies of certificates, publication list, three representative publications and two reference indications with application number 15/23 as a single pdf file to bewerbung(at) (max 10 MB).

Applications are welcome in English or German.

The deadline for this application is May 31, 2023.