Göttingen Campus Postdoc Committee

In summer 2017 a group of postdoctoral researchers from across the Göttingen Campus initiated the formation of the Göttingen Campus Postdoc Network. The founding members (James Daniel, Rituparnu Chakrabarti and Vinodh Ilangovan) wanted to set up a network in which postdocs can easily exchange information and views, and represent their interests more strongly. If you want to know more or are interested to join please contact us at the Campus Office, or one of the committee members.

Help us to make the GC Postdoc Network better known: download and distribute our poster.

Call for new members for the GC Postdoc Committee

Deadlines for applications for new members to the committee are usually the autumn and spring every year. The Postdoc Coordinator will advertise the call to the GC Postdoc Network. The next deadline is 31 October 2022.

We are looking for your ideas, input, and energy to make the Göttingen Campus a better place for Postdocs.

The GC Postdoc Committee’s mission:

  • strives to ensure that the GC Postdoc community is valued, understood and that its voice is heard;
  • supports, serves, and enhances the experience of the GC Postdoc community by providing an inclusive and overarching network across the GC and beyond;
  • champions equality, diversity, and interdisciplinarity at every opportunity.

You can see more about what we do here, and the terms of reference are here.

As a committee member, you will benefit from:

  • directly influencing the events and activities of the Postdoc Network
  • meeting postdocs from across the Campus
  • getting experience in committee work
  • gaining a better understanding of how large organisations work
  • opportunities to be more involved in the running of the University and Campus and meet senior staff
  • acquiring transferable skills which are sought by many employers and can go on your CV

The main commitment is contributing ideas at our friendly meeting once a month. Meetings are in English, last approximately one hour, and are usually conducted via zoom. There is also attendance when possible at events (e.g., Postdoc Socials or Postdoc Support and Information Fairs).

We welcome all applications andare keen to increase the diversity (e.g., geographical location across the Campus, variety of disciplines, backgrounds and origins)  to enhance the representativeness of the committee. We aim for balanced representation of Postdocs in the committee and all genders are welcome.

The committee particularly encourages postdocs from any area or viewpoint that you (the GC Postdoc Network) consider is currently under-represented.

The application process is quick and easy: simply send a short CV and an email briefly explaining why you would like to join the Committee to Melissa Sollich, the Postdoc Coordinator. This will be considered by the committee to ensure a good fit. Contact any of the current committee members for a chat or meet us at one of our socials to find out more.

We use the term ‘Postdoc’ in the broad sense of ‘early career researcher’ – a doctorate holder who conducts professional research with a time-limited contract or fellowship. If you fit this definition, even if you do not usually see yourself as a Postdoc, feel free to apply! We are looking for diverse perspectives.

Linh Dang

Linh Dang specialises in computer science with a passion for machine learning methods and their applications to Bioinformatics. His PhD research at the University of Göttingen focused on applying supervised machine learning to study protein’s properties such as DNA-binding sites or protein-protein interaction sites. Additionally, he is also interested in graph-based inferences to investigate how protein’s conformations change. In his free time, he likes watching Ted talks and science shows. His hobby is mountain hiking.

Natalia Ruiz

Natalia Ruiz is a postdoctoral fellow of the Alexander-von-Humboldt Foundation at the Institute of Agricultural Law of the Georg-August-University Göttingen. She is a Colombian legal scholar and consultant on issues related to international development, gender equality, indigenous rights and environmental justice. She completed her PhD in Law from Colombia’s National University and educational and professional experience in South Korea, China and the United States. Her current research work, “An agrarian adjudication theory for small farmers and indigenous populations in Colombia”, focuses on aspects of rural reform in Colombia following the 2016 Peace Accord. Natalia loves bicycling with her family, progressive rock music, collecting shoes, gourmet food and travel.  

Ilka Vosteen

Ilka Vosteen is a behavioral ecologist who focuses on searching and orientation behavior of insects. She did her PhD at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena, followed by a three years postdoc project in the Laboratory of Entomology at Wageningen University (NL). In October 2019, she joined the Agricultural Entomology group at the University of Göttingen, where she explores how our knowledge on insect behavior can be applied to make pest control in agricultural systems more sustainable.

Ilka thinks that the postdoc phase is very challenging, because of short-term projects and the necessity to move between universities in different cities and countries to pursue an academic career. An active exchange with postdocs in similar situations can help scientists to deal with the challenges of this critical career phase and Ilka hopes to foster this exchange as an active member of the Postdoc Network. During her time off, Ilka enjoys hiking in the surroundings of Göttingen, gardening on her balcony, cooking delicious meals and reading.

Kamila Svobodova

Kamila Svobodova is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research Fellow at the University of Göttingen. Through her project CESMINE, she explores the complexities of socio-economic rehabilitation after small-scale mining in Germany, Denmark, and the Czech Republic. She also holds an honorary role at the Centre for Social Responsibility at the University of Queensland. Her expertise is in understanding how important ‘environmental psychology’ is when designing mine closure and post-mining landscapes. Kamila is a Landscape Engineer and she holds a Ph.D. in Architecture and Urbanism. Besides her academic career, Kamila worked as an urban planner and participated in various regional development planning projects. She is an outdoor and travel enthusiast. During her time off, you usually find her hiking or climbing. She enjoys traveling, meeting new people, and exploring different cultures.

Lisa Maria Franke

Dr. phil. Lisa Maria Franke is specialised in the fields of  Arabic and Islamic Studies as well as in Social and Cultural Anthropology. Currently, she works as assistant professor in the field "Anthropology of Islam" at the Institue of Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of Göttingen. She carries out research on individual religiosities and non-conformist perspectives in Alexandria as part of the ERC project "Private Pieties: Mundane Islam and New Forms of Muslim Religiosity: Impact on Contemporary Social and Political Dynamics" (2016-2022). She received her PhD in Arabic Studies from the University of Leipzig in 2011. Here, she focussed on martyrdom, gender constructions and social discourses in Palestine. Subsequently, at the University of Cologne, she dealt with the religious, social and political content of colloquial poetry in Egypt and published on the symbolism in modern interpretations of the end times. Her research interests include everyday history, eschatology, belief and identity, discourse analysis, and gender studies; processes of individualisation, religious transformations and social dynamics; the use of language in various forms of texts. She graduated from the University of Bayreuth and the School of Oriental and African Studies (London). She taught at the Universities of Leipzig, Cologne and Goettingen as assistant professor.

Marthe Klöcking

Marthe Klöcking is an observational geodynamicist and data scientist. She coordinates the Digital Geochemical Data Infrastructure (DIGIS) project that is modernising the geochemical database ‘GEOROC’: with the goal to maximise access to and re-use of research data collected over the past decades, and so to improve the research infrastructure in Germany and worldwide.
When she has time for research herself, Marthe exploits the chemical fingerprints of volcanic rocks to study the origin of magmas and the internal structure of continents in places such as Yellowstone. She holds a PhD from the University of Cambridge (UK) and has worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Macquarie University and the Australian National University (Australia). Marthe has experience attracting her own research funding and working with industry and government partners.
She loves the outdoors, especially while hiking, cycling or rowing. She enjoys challenging her perceptions and inherent biases through travel, culture and exchange with people from all backgrounds and stages of life.

Tobias Kahland

Tobias Kahland did his PhD research at the German Primate Center - Leibniz Institute for Primate Research (DPZ) and the Central Institute for Experimental Animals (CIEA) in Kawasaki, Japan, about transgenesis and gene modification in the common marmoset. After some time away from academia he is back working as a postdoctoral researcher at the Deutsches Primatenzentrum in the Platform Degenerative Diseases, focusing on Assisted Reproductive Technologies  (ART) and genetic modification in the common marmoset.
Outside of work he likes to spend time at the sea for scuba diving or kite surfing and explore the outdoors while hiking or cycling.

Muhammad Salim Hakeemi

Muhammad received his PhD in 2018 from the Institute of Developmental Biology, University of Cologne. In October 2018, he joined the University of Göttingen, Department of Evolutionary Developmental Genetics as a postdoctoral researcher. His research focus is on development of transgenic tools for spatiotemporal control of RNA interference (RNAi) for gene function analysis. Muhammad found the Göttingen Campus Postdoc Network a great platform for postdoctoral researchers, not only to take part in their regular activities for information exchange but also to attend special events for career development.

Tobias Pöhnl

Tobias Pöhnl is a Food Technologist, currently working at the group of Quality and Sensory of Plant Products at the Agricultural Faculty of the University of Göttingen. He obtained his PhD at the University of Hohenheim (Stuttgart) in 2019. His academic interest is the technological and sensorial value of primary and secondary plant metabolites as well as their synthesis and accumulation in agricultural systems. The analysis and identification of those compounds by chromatographic methods demands most of his time. Currently bitter compounds in the context of sustainable production of tasty food for the future are of particular interest.

When he is not working you can find him outdoors running or cycling, maybe at a marathon nearby. Holidays are best spent hiking or mountaineering anywhere between Norway and the Austrian Alps. For relaxation, he enjoys good food, wine and movies or a board game with friends.

Renas Koshnaw

Renas is a postdoctoral researcher at the Geosciences Center (Geowissenschaftliches Zentrum Göttingen) at the University of Göttingen. He investigates tectonic processes through sedimentary rocks, including the surface expression of deep-Earth geodynamic and mountain building processes, and their impact on paleoclimate and biogeography over millions of years. He received his BSc degree in Geology (2006) from the Salahaddin University-Erbil in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. After being awarded the American fellowship Iraq Scholars and Leaders Program, he graduated with an MSc (2011) and PhD (2016) in the geological sciences from the University of Texas at Austin. Prior to arriving in Göttingen as a Humboldt fellow in the summer of 2019, he conducted a one-year postdoctoral research role at the University of Bern in Switzerland as a recipient of the Swiss Government Excellence Scholarship. Outside work, Renas enjoys being outdoor and traveling, as well as reading fiction and nonfiction books. He is keen on learning from and exchanging ideas with individuals across diverse backgrounds, and open to addressing cross-cultural controversial topics to promote universal values and cultural commonality. As a Göttingen Campus Postdoc Committee member he plans to work on, in collaboration with other team members, developing a white paper regarding professional development of postdocs to increase their positive experience and contribute in making the Göttingen Campus an attraction for talented minds nationally and internationally.

Kibrom Sibhatu

Kibrom Sibhatu, from Eritrea, is an Agricultural and Food Economist interested in the dynamic linkages of human welfare with ecosystem services in response to global challenges, including deforestation, poverty, food insecurity, hunger and malnutrition, and climate change. His research experience encompasses projects in the Global South, where he researched the link between farm-level agricultural biodiversity and the quality of diets in smallholder households.

His current research focuses on smallholder land-use change and human welfare in Southeast Asia, particularly in Sumatra, Indonesia. This work is under the EFForTS project -  a Collaborative Research Center  (CRC 990) funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). The CRC 990 investigates the ecological and socioeconomic effects of the significant transformation of forests towards a cash crop-dominated rubber and oil palm plantation landscape, focusing on smallholder systems.

Outside work, he is a dedicated runner, plays football, and spends much time reading. He is also active in organizing events for and supporting refugees in Göttingen.

At the University of Göttingen (and other universities in Germany), foreign nationals are increasingly occupying vital (albeit short-term) early-career academic and research positions. However, international staff (and their partners) are often faced with distinct challenges, including language barriers, immigration status, and short-term work contracts. As a Göttingen Campus Postdoc Committee member, he is keen to help address such challenges in collaboration with other team members.



Former committee member (2017-2019)

Rituparna Chakrabarti got her PhD in neuroscience from the University of Göttingen, then was a Postdoc at the Center for Biostructural Imaging of Neurodegeneration (BIN) in Göttingen. Her research focus was to study the neurotransmitter release and understand the nanostructures of specialized chemical synapses in the auditory systems. Rituparna enjoys the interface of science, art and communication. She is chief editor of an online magazine called Club SciWri, which aims to simplify science for broader audiences and discuss some of the urgent issues faced in STEM careers. To unwind, she plays the mandolin and eagerly looks for a corner at a coffee house to slide herself in with a good read or company.

Former committee member (2017-2019)

Vinodh Ilangovan got his PhD from the University of Göttingen in 2016, then was a Postdoc at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry. He studied circadian clocks and sleep using an integrative approach by combining mole­cular genetics, animal behavior and evolu­tion­ary biology. He is an Open Science Ambassador and strongly advocates for the practice of responsible behaviors in scientific research. He is also a member of the early career advisory group of the open access journal eLife. Vinodh enjoys experimenting with science communication through performing arts.

Former committee member (2019)

Sukanya Sengupta is a geochemist; she got her PhD in 2016 from the University of Göttingen, then worked as a Postdoc in the Isotope Geology department. Her research focused primarily on studying oxygen isotope ratios in sediments and rocks of different ages - millions and even billions of years old, in order to understand how Earth’s oceans and atmosphere evolved over time, and under what conditions early life flourished. She enjoys working long hours in the laboratory, performing analytical work and addressing exciting new problems. In her leisure time she is fond of reading fiction, going for a swim, cooking and travelling.

Former committee member (2018-2020)

Marko Markovic got an MSc of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Belgrade in 2011 and a PhD at the University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) in 2016. He worked at Ottobock HealthCare GmbH, as a researcher at the UMG, and as as a part-time lecturer at the PFH, Göttingen. He researches and develops novel human-machine interfaces for upper limb prostheses. He considers that one of his most important roles is the education of future generations of students, and to this goal, he actively supervises several Master and Bachelor theses.

Former committee member (2018-2020)

Louisa Kulke conducted her PhD in Psychology and Neuroscience at University College London (UK), investigating the development of attention from infancy to adulthood. After a research visit to the University of California, San Diego (US), she had two postdoc positions at the University of Göttingen, working in developmental psychology and affective neuroscience, unravelling the neural mechanisms of emotion and attention. She has now accepted a junior professorship at the Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nürnberg, where she is setting up a lab for Neurocognitive Developmental Psychology. Besides research and teaching, Louisa is an ambassador for the Open Science Framework and actively promoted Open Science practices in Göttingen and beyond. When she is not in the lab or in the lecture hall, she likes to play the guitar or travel.

Former committee member (2017-2020)

James Daniel is a neuroscientist focusing on synaptic transmission between neurons. He completed his PhD at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research (Sydney, Australia) in 2008, focusing on mechanisms of dopamine release at single synapses. James then undertook a postdoc at the Children's Medical Research Institute (Sydney, Australia) where he worked on the development of novel inhibitors of synaptic vesicle endocytosis and their potential application in the treatment of epilepsy. In 2013 he moved to Göttingen, where he has been working in the Molecular Neurobiology Department of the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine, studying the molecular regulation of synaptic trans­mission. With regards to the Postdoctoral Network, James thinks that postdoctoral positions are a complicated and critical phase of the career of any researcher and often overlooked in terms of career support provided by universities and other research centers. James hopes to help achieve better representation for postdocs within Göttingen.


Former committee member (2019-2020)

Burcu Uçaray-Mangıtlı is a political scientist with research interests in international organizations, development, and gender equality. She completed her PhD at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Her doctoral dissertation focused on domestic and international bureaucrats, their shared expertise, and how their relationships affect international cooperation. From August 2017 to July 2018, Burcu was a postdoctoral fellow sponsored by the Swedish Institute at University of Stockholm. In August 2018, she joined the University of Göttingen, Department of Political Science as a postdoctoral researcher. Her current research, inspired by her project in Stockholm, focuses on international financial institutions and their implementation of gender equality norm, both internally and externally. She is particularly interested in organizational culture in these institutions, how it changes and affects development projects. Burcu believes in work-life balance, and enjoys watching science fiction movies, reading crime and mystery novels, and climbing.

Former committee member (2019-2021)

Altaf Qadir is a historian of the nineteenth/twentieth centuries with a specialization in History of Pukhtunkhwa (Pukhtuns’ inhabited area of Afghanistan and Pakistan). He obtained his PhD in History from Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad. He is currently a research fellow at the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology and the Ethnographic Collection of the University of Göttingen. Altaf research has focused on the religious mobilization during the 19th century, led by Sufi turned Jihadist Sayyid Ahmad Barailvi (d. 1831). His current project deals with religious text, produced by the indigenous inhabitants of identical jurisprudence and Sufi order but had developed difference on certain issues. Since the study is neither pure historical nor religious rather a combination of anthropology, history and theology, he uses multiple methodological tools for analyzing content. With a group of peer scholars, he is also working on developing indigenous scholarship on Pukhtunkhwa during 1500-1900. His other activities include human rights advocacy, particularly raising voice for marginalized communities of Pukhtunkhwa and Pakistan. He also takes part on Social Media platforms to spread knowledge in his mother tongue.

Former committee member (2019-2021)

Tomasz Wdowik is an organic chemist focussing on the application of transition metals in catalytic transformations. He completed his PhD in 2019 at the State University of New York at Buffalo (USA) working on aerobic copper-catalyzed reactions. Currently, he is a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute of Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry, University of Göttingen. He is working on the development of new carbon-hydrogen bond activation reactions relying on electricity as a sustainable oxidant. Outside the lab, Tomasz enjoys attending concerts, travelling, and trying different cuisines.

Former committee member (2018-2021)

Sarah Hoffmann-Urlaub received her PhD in 2016 from the Institute for X-Ray Physics, working on nanostructured waveguides for hard X-Ray focussing. After a short postdoc phase, in 2017 she became a Junior Research Group Leader at the Institute of Materials Physics at the University of Göttingen. Her group is active in the field of functional thin films fabricated with the technique of Pulsed Laser Deposition. There are many applications for these high quality (multi-) layer devices, for example in the fields of photovoltaics, photocatalysis or X-Ray optics. Apart from gaining deeper insights into complex structure-property relationships for a wide variety of materials and geometries, she dedicates her time to educating students. After retiring from playing rugby, she still enjoys watching games, playing classic video games or listening to records from her LP collection.

Former committee member (2019-2021)

Yang Shen is a cultural anthro­pologist focusing on religion, secularism, and ritual theories. She received her Ph.D. from Boston University in 2019 and is currently a post-doctoral research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity. In her doctoral thesis, Yang examined how religiously unaffiliated temple-goers relate to Buddhist temples in contemporary China. In her new project, Yang studies the technological variations of a Chinese divination technique and investigates questions of religious materiality, ritual technology, and imagination as a cultural practice. Outside her work, Yang enjoys reading broadly and sharing good food with friends.

Former committee member (2019-2021)

Anne-Dominique Gindrat received her PhD in Natural Science, option Neuroscience, from the University of Fribourg (Switzerland) in 2015. She studied the sensorimotor control of the hand in human and non-human primates using electroencephalography (EEG). Since then, she has been working as a postdoc in the Neurobiology Laboratory of Prof. Hansjörg Scherberger at the Deutsches Primatenzentrum GmbH in Göttingen. She is investigating brain areas involved in planning and executing hand grasping movements in behaving macaque monkeys using the emerging approach of optogenetics. For this project, she was awarded with a 3-year postdoc fellowship by the Swiss National Science Foundation.

Working as a postdoc is usually a precarious position, and improvements are strongly needed, for instance regarding work-life balance, project funding, etc. In this respect, the services offered by the Göttingen Campus (GC) Postdoc Network are very valuable. As a member of the GC Postdoc Committee, she hopes to be helpful to and to do more for the postdoc community in Göttingen. During her free time, she enjoys cooking, reading, biking and listening to classical music.

Former committee member

Marion Reichenbach is an animal scientist focusing on (sub-)tropical livestock production systems. She is currently a postdoctoral researcher in the group of Animal husbandry in the Tropics and Subtropics at the Universities of Göttingen and of Kassel. She completed her PhD at the University of Kassel in 2020 within the interdisciplinary DGF Research Unit FOR 2432/1, looking at the impacts of urbanization on Indian dairy production with focus on nutrition. After 18‑months of field work in the emerging megacity of Bangalore, South India, she quantified resource use efficiency and global environmental impacts, i.e. greenhouse gas emissions, of Bangalore’s dairy production systems, while highlighting the social-ecological system, in which Bangalore’s dairy producers are embedded. Trained at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich (ETHZ), she later gained practical experience with beef cattle systems in Bolivia and pig production in Sweden. Outside work, she like to read foreign literature or enjoy countryside’s food and scenery.

Former committee member

Deniz Kilincoglu is an intellectual and cultural historian of the nineteenth century with a particular interest in the Ottoman Empire. He received his PhD in Near Eastern Studies from Princeton University. He is currently a research fellow at the Lichtenberg-Kolleg of the University of Göttingen. Deniz’s research has focused on the intercultural circulation of ideas, and its social, political, and cultural implications. His current project focuses on nationalism and emotions at the turn of the twentieth century. As a true believer and practitioner of interdisciplinarity, he uses methodological and theoretical insights from both the humanities and the cognitive sciences in his research. He is also working on developing a digital humanities project in cooperation with the Göttingen Center for Digital Humanities. When he is not working, he loves reading fiction and thinking about the connections between fiction and reality.

Former committee member

Stefanie Griebel is a plant breeder and geneticist experienced in maize and sorghum breeding. She worked 5 years as assistant maize breeder in private industry, first in Germany and later in Zambia. Her work experience and travels in several African countries motivated her to do a Ph.D. in plant breeding and genetics at Purdue University, USA. She focused on the improvement of sorghum grain quality as part of the Sorghum and Millet Innovation Lab funded by USAID Feed the Future. After graduation in 2019, she joined the division of plant breeding methodology at the University of Göttingen. Currently she studies the importance of gene-gene interactions in quantitative trait variation in maize aiming to include sorghum. She is passionate about teaching and has developed a new class Breeding tropical and subtropical staple crops and their impact on global food security. She supervises students in maize and potato breeding in cooperation with the CGIAR centers e.g. CIMMYT, IITA and CIP.

Former committee member

Nina Gerber is a wildlife ecologist with a background in evolutionary ecology, marine science and behavioural ecology. After completing her PhD in 2018 at the University of Zürich, Switzerland, Nina moved to Brisbane, Australia to study dispersal in reef fish to optimise the planning of marine protected areas. she was part of the WeideWildWolf project at the University of Göttingen studying the effects of returning wolves on the ecosystem in the cultural landscapes of Europe. The project investigates potential effects on prey and with this on the vegetation and tries to identify potential conflicts with stakeholders. Apart from research, she is engaged in education, reaching from teaching and supervising students to science outreach. Nina is an LGBT+ member, outdoor enthusiast, dog lover and fancies any sport from Salsa dancing to playing rugby.