15 PhD positions are available in the field of Autophagy around Europe (Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, and United Kingdom).

DRIVE (Driving next generation autophagy researchers towards translation) is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action (MSCA), Innovative Training Network (ITN) H2020-MSCA-ITN-2017, funded by the European Commission under Grant Agreement n. 765912.

The manipulation of autophagy has a vast therapeutic potential to revolutionize the way cancers, neurodegenerative disorders, inflammatory and infectious diseases are treated. Despite the promises made by pioneering medical studies, the limited applied research on autophagy has hampered the translation of fundamental knowledge into clinical grade products and improved healthcare. Applied autophagy research is essential to understand the roles of autophagy in the different physiological and pathological situations, to generate (disease) models and develop biomarkers and assays to assess its progress. The goal of the ETN Driving next generation autophagy researchers towards translation (DRIVE) is to train 15 young scientists to fill this gap. DRIVE will equip its PhD students with a unique combination of knowledge and experimental expertise that are brought together in this consortium by the different partners. The realization of their projects in applied autophagy research will benefit of an exceptional interdisciplinary platform integrating cell biology, biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics, chemistry and “omics” approaches. In addition, DRIVE ESRs will acquire competencies to exploit the results for the development of products and techniques of commercial value.

Eligibility (who can apply): Early-Stage Researchers (ESRs).

Eligibility will be checked based on the following cumulative criteria:

a) Applicants Career Stage: Only Early Stage Researchers (ESR) can apply, that is, researchers of any nationality who, at the date of recruitment by the partner of DRIVE [1] have not yet been awarded a doctoral degree and [2] are in the first 4 years of his/her research career, counted from the date he/she obtained the degree that allows him/her to embark in a doctoral degree.
Date of Recruitment means the first day of the employment of the researcher for the purposes of this project (i.e. the starting date indicated in the employment contract or equivalent direct contract).

b) Mobility: Applicants are required to undertake physical, transnational mobility (i.e. move from one country to another). That is, at the date of recruitment, the researcher must not have resided or carried out his/her main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of the partner of DRIVE he/she is applying for, for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the his/her recruitment under the project.
Compulsory national service, short stays such as holidays, and time spent as part of a procedure for obtaining refugee status under the Geneva Convention are not taken into account.
For international European interest organisations or international organisations, recruited researchers must not have spent more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date at the same appointing organisation.

IMPORTANTE NOTE: the career stage of eligible applicants and the mobility rule is determined in terms of full-time research equivalent years. This means that research experience is measured from the date when a researcher obtained the degree which would formally entitle him/her to embark in a PhD degree, either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the researcher is recruited, irrespective of whether or not a PhD degree is or was ever envisaged.

Application: eligible candidates should fill in the application form and upload a cover letter stating their motivation and research interests, an updated CV with the dates of relevant diplomas (day, month and year), and the contact information of 2 referee persons.

Applicants should apply to their preferred research team within DRIVE’s network (see details below), but they can indicate a secondary and tertiary preference in their application.