COSMIC Mission

COSMIC delivers the next generation of systems medicine professionals who successfully combat complex human disorders. We will focus on B-cell lymphoma and rheumatoid arthritis, diseases that originate from abnormal functioning of the adaptive immune system, in particular the germinal center. COSMIC develops and integrates experimental and computational approaches, and establish a unique cross-fertilization between oncology and auto-immunity. 
Download: COSMIC Summary
  • COSMIC in numbers

    10 Beneficiaries
    7 Partner Organisations
    14 Early Stage Researchers (ESRs)
        -13 PhD students
        -1 Industrial researcher
    5 Companies
    9 European countries
        -NL, FR, SE, UK, IT, ES, DE, CH, EL
    5 Visiting Scientists
    4 External Trainers
    5 Members of External Advisory Board
    1 Ethics Advisor
  • COSMIC Research Background

    Systems Medicine

    One of the key question in systems biology is how biological systems (e.g., cells, molecular networks, germinal center) operate upon interaction with their external environment. Answering this question will generate knowledge about the dy­namics of complex systems and quantitative and explanatory computer models based on ex­perimental data.

    Systems medicine implements systems biology approaches in medical research and practice. This involves iterative and reciprocal feedback between clinical investigations and practice with computational, statistical and mathematical multiscale analysis and modelling of pathogenetic mechanisms, disease progression and remission, treatment responses, and adverse events as well as disease prevention at the individual patient level.

    Systems medicine aims at a measurable improvement of patient health through systems-based approaches and practice.

    Source: CASyM
    See also: EASyM
    Further reading: Schmitz, U., and Wolkenhauer, O. eds. (2016). Systems Medicine (New York: Springer)

    Adaptive immunity
    Germinal Center
    B-cell lymphoma
    Rheumatoid Arthritis
    Computational modelling
  • COSMIC Systems Medicine

    Through collaboration with existing systems medicine initiatives (e.g. EASyM, ISBE) COSMIC researchers contribute to systems medicine infrastructure and best practices that reduce time and costs to address clinical needs.

    At the same time this will promote Europe’s position in the health domain.
  • COSMIC Training

    An important aim of the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Action European Training Network (ETN) is to train young researchers (Early Stage Researchers, ESRs) with multi-disciplinary and multi-sectorial scientific and transferable skills required in systems medicine and translational medicine (WP2).

    COSMIC delivers 14 highly skilled systems medicine professionals who are able to address and solve complex clinical questions and to shape the next generation of systems medicine scientists.


Recruitment for (PhD) positions in the EU Horizon 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie MSCA-ETN project COSMIC

Number of available positions: 14 (13 PhD positions, 1 Industrial Researcher) All positions are filled now
Career stage: Early stage researchers (ESR)
Keywords: Adaptive immunity, germinal center, B-cell lymphoma, rheumatoid artrithis, computational modelling
Key dates
  • 01 January 2018: Start of recruitment process.
  • Extended deadline 1 May 2018: Deadline for on-line application for ESR positions (
    • Note: we are currently interviewing applicants from the first round of applications. However, new applications might still be considered if we do not find suitable candidates for one or more of our positions.
  • March 2018: Evaluation of CVs and initial Skype interviews.
  • 01 April 2018: Communication list preselected candidates for personal interviews.
  • May - September 2018: Hiring of selected COSMIC ESRs.
  • Update 28-08-2018: deadline for ESR 14 10th of September 2018
We look for Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) with a master degree in life sciences, immunology, bioinformatics, computational sciences, or similar. COSMIC projects focus on experimental immunology and computational modelling of the germinal center. Therefore, the candidates should have a keen interest immunology, experimental and computational approaches, and systems medicine.
The recruitment process comprises four stages:
  1. Candidates apply for a position using the online application form. (Update 28-08-2018: candidates for ESR 14 apply directly to the PI AND project manager, see full job description!) The candidate submits an evidence-based CV preferably using the Europass template. The COSMIC Project Manager provides a first screen of the written applications to check eligibility of the candidate. Subsequently, the written applications are screened by the principal investigators (PIs) and the Recruitment Committee (RC). The RC advises the PIs but but also the ESRs who applied for a specific position e.g., w.r.t. other/more suitable positions within COSMIC; Each PI installs a local recruitment committee who select at least 3 candidates for further interviews in stage 2 and stage 3;
  2. The candidate engage in a Skype interview(s) with the recruitment committees of the organisation(s) where he/she applied; At least 5 candidates will be interviewed by Skype; 
  3. Based on the Skype interview(s) the local recruitment committee selects candidates for personal interviews and presentations at the location of their organisation. At least 2 candidates will be invitied. Expenses made by the candidate for traveling and hotel will be reimbursed by the local organisation;
  4. The local recruitment committee makes the final decision about hiring the candidate for their position(s). They will communicate their decision with the Recruitment Committee.
The recruitment committee comprises prof. dr. Antoine van Kampen (chair), Dr. Laurian Jongejan (Project Manager), Dr. Martin Turner (Babraham Institute), Dr. Stefano Casola (IFOM), and Dr. Maria Martinez (IBM).
COSMIC organisations act in line with the principles of the European Charter for Researchers and Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers. COSMIC intends to hire an equal number of male and female ESRs.
Applicants need to fully respect three eligibility criteria

Early-stage researchers (ESR) must, at the date of recruitment by the beneficiary, be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and have not been awarded a doctoral degree. This is measured from the date when they obtained a master degree which formally entitles them to embark on a doctorate, either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the COSMIC research training is provided.

Conditions of international mobility of researchers: researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of the recruiting host organisation for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date. 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.

English language: candidates must demonstrate that their ability to understand and express themselves in both written and spoken English is sufficiently high for them to derive the full benefit from the network training. Information about TOEFL can be found here .



In COSMIC, each recruited researcher will be seconded to the organisations of two or more of the partners for a duration of several weeks/months up to 30% of his/her recruitment period. Normal practice during secondments is for the researchers to keep their contract with the sending organisation, which also pays the travel and subsistence expenses (e.g. accommodation). During their secondment, researchers receive supervision and training at the premises of the receiving organisation. Secondments are differentiated from short visits, i.e. of a few days. Secondments are mandatory. If you apply for one of the positions then you agree that you will be seconded to other organisations during your contract. 


Contract, benefits and salary

Each candidate that is hired will be based at the premises of the principal investigator where they applied.

All positions comprise research and training to acquire a PhD. The position (ESR9) at Redoxis in an exception. ESR9 will be trained as an industrial researcher.  

The duration of COSMIC is limited to 48 months starting from 1 January 2018. The duration of the contract will be 3 years except for ESRs hired by the AMC (Amsterdam) which will be offered a 4-year contract due to the PhD system in the Netherlands.  

The Marie Skłodowska-Curie (MSCA) programme offers competitive and attractive salary and working conditions. The successful candidates will receive a gross salary in accordance with the MSCA regulations for early stage researchers. Exact salary will be confirmed upon appointment [Living Allowance (37.320 euro/year * a correction factor to be applied per country) + Monthly mobility allowance (600 euro)]. A family allowance of €500 per month will be paid should the researcher have family, regardless of whether the family will move with the researcher or not. In this context, family is defined as persons linked to the researcher by (i) marriage, or (ii) a relationship with equivalent status to a marriage recognised by the national or relevant regional legislation of the country where this relationship was formalised; or (iii) dependent children who are actually being maintained by the researcher. The family status of a researcher will be determined at the date of their (first) recruitment in the action and will not evolve during the action lifetime.

The final amount will not change in case of secondments to another organisation. The contracts include social security coverage providing at least sickness and parental benefits, invalidity and accidents at work and occupational diseases, covering the researcher in every place of implementation of COSMIC activities. As these will be paid by the employer and depend on country-specific regulations, the final net salary that each ESR will receive may differ. In the case of secondments to other beneficiaries or partner organisations, the social security provision will also cover the researchers during these periods.

In addition to their individual scientific projects, all fellows will benefit from further continuing education, which includes internships and secondments, a variety of training modules as well as transferable skills courses and active participation in workshops and conferences.


Online Recruitment Procedure

All applications proceed through the online recruitment formon this website (Update 28-08-2018: candidates for ESR 14 apply directly to the PI AND project manager, see full job description!). Candidates apply electronically for one to maximum three positions and indicate their preference. Candidates provide all requested information including a detailed CV (preferably using the Europass template), a motivation letter, and optionally one or two reference letters. During registration, applicants will need to prove that they are eligible (three aspects: respect ESR definition, mobility criteria, English language proficiency).


Further information

The EURAXESS website may provide usefull information (e.g., visa). More information about Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions can be found here.For other questions you can contact Dr. Laurian Jongejan (Project Manager)



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    Project coordination

    Prof. dr. A.H.C. van Kampen (Antoine)
    Bioinformatics Laboratory
    E: a.h.vankampen at
    P: +31 20 5667096

    Project management:
    Dr. Laurian Jongejan
    Department of Experimental Immunology
    E: l.zuidmeer at
    P: +31 20 5666819

    The Netherlands
    Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam

    Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

    The Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions (MSCA), named after the double Nobel Prize winning Polish-French scientist famed for her work on radioactivity, support researchers at all stages of their careers. One type of action is the European Training Network (ETN) aimed at joint research training by partners from academia, industry, and other organisation. ETNs facilitate the the researcher to experience different sectors and develop their transferable skills by working on joint research projects.


    COSMIC is a European Training Network funded from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 765158.

© 2018 COSMIC. All Rights Reserved.

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