The EMBO Long-Term Fellowships are awarded for a period of up to two years and support post-doctoral research visits to laboratories throughout Europe and the world. International exchange is a key feature in the application process. 

EMBO supports talented researchers, selected through impartial evaluation processes, to allow them to do great science. The wide scientific scope across the full range of life science research coupled with the broad geographical reach of more than 1700 members and associate members – some of the best researchers in Europe and around the world – positions EMBO optimally to serve Europe’s life science community.

Key subject areas: the fellowships are offered in the following areas

Cell Cycle,

Cell & Tissue Architecture,

Cellular Metabolism ,

Chromatin & Transcription,

Development ,

Differentiation & Death,

Evolution & Ecology ,

Genome Stability & Dynamics,

Genomic & Computational Biology,

Immunology ,

Membranes & Transport ,

Microbiology, Virology & Pathogens ,

Molecular Medicine ,

Neuroscience ,

Plant Biology ,

Proteins & Biochemistry ,


Signal Transduction ,

Structural Biology & Biophysics ,

Systems Biology ,


Main eligibility criteria:

  • Applicants must hold a doctorate degree or equivalent at the start of the fellowship.
  • Applicants who already hold a PhD degree at the time of application are eligible to apply only if they passed their PhD exam in the two years prior to the respective application deadline
  • Applicants must have at least one first author publication accepted in press or published in an international peer reviewed journal at the time of application.
  • All applications must involve movement between countries (detailed information about mobility requirements is listed in guidelines).
  • Applications to go to the country in which the PhD was obtained will not be considered.
  • Applications for a Long-Term Fellowship to be held in the laboratory, institute or department in which the candidate worked to obtain his or her PhD, or to work again with the candidate’s PhD supervisor, no matter where the latter is located, will not be considered.
  • Candidates can only submit one application for one project at one host laboratory at each round of selection.
  • Reapplication is permissible only once.

Application Procedure and Key dates

Applications and supporting documentation (two references, receiving institute acceptance) are only accepted via the online application system. (Opens 6 weeks prior to the application deadline; 1 January for the 12 February deadline and 1 July for the 12 August deadline.)

Please read the helpful notes for applicants, the FAQs and the Long-Term Fellowships guidelinesbefore applying. Please also see the preview of the online application form.

All applications must be started before Monday, 8 February 2016, 14:00 Central European Time. No new applications can be started after that.

The deadline for submission of complete applications (including references and receiving institute acceptance) is Friday, 12 February 2016, 14:00 Central European Time.

Selection Procedure and Key Information

All applications are examined at the EMBO Fellowships Office to ensure that they are complete and eligible.

All eligible applications are then sent to the Fellowship Committee for pre-screening and twice the number of available fellowships is selected for an interview. During the pre-screening, the Committee reviews a condensed application form, which includes a summary of the applicant’s main scientific achievements along with the three most important publications, summary and biological significance of the proposed work, justification for choice of the host lab, as well as reference and acceptance letters.

For applicants who successfully passed the pre-screening, an interviewer, who is an expert in the area of the application, will be selected from among the EMBO Members and EMBO Young Investigators. When it is not possible to arrange a personal or video interview, the candidate’s application is sent for written evaluation.

All applications are then evaluated by the EMBO Fellowship Committee based on:

  • Previous scientific achievements of the applicant
  • Novelty and biological significance of proposed research
  • Appropriateness of the host laboratory for the proposed research and training of the applicant.

The Fellowship Committee then meets to take the final funding decisions. Typically the outcome of the selection is known between 14-16 weeks after the closing date and is provided on the EMBO website shortly after the committee meeting.

Note the following when submitting your EMBO Long-Term Fellowship application:
Interviews normally take place within 6-10 weeks of the closing date for applications. The interview may take place outside the applicant’s country of residence; therefore, applicants must have a valid passport. Candidates may be requested to give a seminar as part of the interview procedure. The interview should take place at the interviewer’s convenience and the applicant is responsible for contacting the interviewer.

Interview travel expenses will be reimbursed by EMBO. A claim form will be issued and together with receipts has to be returned to the EMBO Fellowship office.

Candidates are expected to travel by second-class rail for journeys of up to 8 hours. Otherwise or in case this is less expensive, travel by economy class air will be refunded. Subsistence and accommodation expenses are refunded up to the EMBO standard daily rate.


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