ICFO jobs & fellowships

Welcome to ICFOjobs

Our job openings site and
online application interface

Please consult openings for further information on available projects and positions, as well as for elegibility, conditions, required application material and deadlines.

We invite displaced researchers and eligible MSc and PhD students, in particular those affected by the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, to apply to the opening listed below that fits best their case. A statement describing clearly the applicant’s situation and eligibility is to be included in the corresponding presentation letter.

Dear applicant,

In the event that you have lost the acknowledging e-mail containing the link providing access to your application, you may retrieve your data by completing the form below.

Please, provide the required data and click on the ‘submit’ button. You will receive an e-mail, containing the link to your application.

In case of any troubles, please contact us at jobs@icfo.eu.

Are you interested in a position or a specific opening at ICFO, browsed our FAQs section, but still have a question you would need us to answer? Would you like to know more about a career at ICFO, or the application process? If so, please do not hesitate to contact us by submitting the form below.


Job openings

Group Leaders

Team Leaders

Post-doctoral Researchers

Group Opening

Project Engineers


General Call

A rolling call of the ICFO PhD Program, with periodic deadlines, is always open for candidates applying to do a PhD at ICFO.

All candidates will be considered for all available fellowships for which they are eligible. Some specific fellowships are announced through targeted calls. Candidates applying to these calls are also considered for all other fellowships for which they are eligible.

Students may also join ICFO with their own funding or through external fellowships. Interested candidates should apply directly to such programs, and may wish to contact ICFO research groups they might be interested to join.

For further general information on fellowships and specific calls, please contact us at jobs@icfo.eu

Under- and Postgraduate Students

General Call

  • Spring School on Open-Source Tools for Quantum Science & Technology (18-21 March 2024). Full details of the school program and application form.

  • Admin & Technical Engineers

    Severo Ochoa Excellence Program Post-doctoral Fellowships

    ICFO offers several Post-doctoral fellowships to well-qualified, highly motivated and dynamic young scientists who wish to enhance their scientific career in a friendly and stimulating environment. Up to 12 positions are available. Only applications from candidates with an outstanding background and a suitable fit into the research activities of the institute will be awarded.

    Post-doctoral researchers at ICFO benefit from state-of-the-art research facilities, a stimulating international and interdisciplinary environment and career development opportunities aimed to equip them with unique capabilities to become future leaders, either in the academic or in the industrial world.

    Fellowships will be offered across all ICFO research groups in topics including, but not limited to:

    • Biophysics & Biomedical Optics
    • Optical Sensing, Optoelectronics
    • Nonlinear Optics, Ultrafast Optics & Atto-Physics
    • Nanophotonics, Optomechanics & Nanomechanics
    • Experimental Quantum Optics, Quantum Gases & Quantum Information
    • Theoretical Nanophotonics, Quantum Optics & Quantum Information
    • Condensed Matter Theory & Light-Matter Interactions
    • Photovoltaics, Thermal Photonics, Solar Fuels & CO2 Mitigation

    Please, browse our website for details about ICFO Research Groups and Group Leaders at https://www.icfo.eu/lang/research/groups. In the group profile, you will also see specific available projects in that particular group (application should be formalized through this present general call with the corresponding selection process applicable). If you are interested in discussing possible research topics, please contact ICFO Group Leaders directly.

    Important: During your application, you will be requested to indicate the research group(s) you are interested in.

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    To be eligible for an ICFO Postdoctoral position:

    Candidates must hold an internationally-recognized PhD-equivalent degree in a field related to ICFO research activities by the time of the contract activation.

    Candidates must not have a current contract with ICFO at the time of the call deadline.

    Have a high working knowledge of English.


    Severo Ochoa Excellence Program Post-doctoral Fellowships are offered until December 31, 2023. In the case of contracts that due to justified causes, such as visa delays or personal or family obligations, ought to start later than January 1st, 2022, extensions into 2024 to complete a 2-year contract may be possible if suitable funding becomes available.

    The conditions of the positions awarded are as follows:

    An annual gross salary of €37.900,00. Additionally, a non-recurrent gross amount of €2.000,00 in terms of relocation that will be paid with the first month salary to candidates not currently residing in Barcelona region. Also, if applicable, a non-recurrent gross amount of €2.500,00 will be paid in terms of family allowance to candidates with proven family responsibilities at the time of recruitment. (Spanish tax and social security deductions apply to all these amounts)

    A salary top-up of €4.100 gross/year may be allocated to truly outstanding candidates at the discretion of the Selection Committee and subject to availability of funds. ICFO will allocate budget as deemed necessary and with the corresponding approval from the corresponding Group/Team Leader to enable the Post-doctoral fellow to complete his/her research project. This budget is managed by the Group/Team leader, and include the necessary consumables and other materials, training and other related costs, travel and subsistence costs for participation in national or international events, conference, meetings, schools, and/or other training activities.

    ICFO is an equal employment opportunity employer. Candidates are selected exclusively on merit and potential on the basis of submitted application material. No restrictions of persons with disabilities, citizenship or gender apply to ICFO positions. ICFO abides by the principles of openness, efficiency, transparency, supportiveness, and international comparability as stated in the European Charter for Researchers and the European Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers.

    To apply, suitable candidates are requested to submit online the following material in English:

    • A Cover Letter addressing the motivation for application, as well as specific indication of ICFO research group of interest.
    • A Curriculum Vitae, including contact details.
    • Research Profile (1-page max): Provide a comprehensive description of your research profile in narrative form. You may focus on achievements and address your research focus, research experience, vision and motivation. (*Please see the guidelines below)
    • Statement of Key Contributions: list up to 10 items (e.g. papers, patents, technical contributions, supervision, project management, leadership roles, etc.; may include contributions outside research/academia), with a short description (50-words max.) for each item of your specific contribution and why you consider it significant. (**Please see the guidelines below)
    • Career Interruptions (optional; 1-page max). Candidates may submit a statement regarding any career interruptions (care of dependents, birth of children, etc.), which will be taken-into-account in evaluating their contributions.
    • The names and contact details of 2 referees. IMPORTANT: These referees will be automatically contacted by ICFO requesting them to complete a standardized evaluation form and submit a letter of support for the candidates one week of the application deadline. When they do so, the applicant will receive an email confirming that the corresponding reference letter has been submitted.

    All required application material, including letters of reference, must be complete and submitted by deadline in order for the application to be considered.

    The deadline for submission of applications for the present call is September 19, 2021 and the deadline for referees to submit the reference letters is September 22, 2021.


    *Research Profile

    Provide a comprehensive description of your research profile in narrative form. You may focus on your background, research contributions & achievements (other than publication output), other skills and experience you consider relevant, your research focus and vision related to international field, and the potential scientific and broadly social impact of your work.

    Examples of topics you may wish to address are: contributions to research projects; contribution to building lab infrastructure, conference participation and organisation; supervision of PhD and Master students; refereeing; participation in professional societies; invited talks; prizes, awards and grants, and how the opportunities offered by grant(s) were used; collaborations and networking capabilities; outreach activities; etc.

    Please note that the focus is not on publications nor on output indicators such as journal impact factor or citations, as output can be addressed in the Statement of Key Contributions document.

    **Key contributions/output

    Provide a list of what you consider your key professional contributions (max. 10), with a brief description of each (maximum 50 words). Please include the motivation for the selection of these output items. You may shortly describe the contribution, its (potential) impact and your specific contribution. Please explain, in your own words, why a particular output item is directly relevant to your research profile and/or ICFO and your groups of interest at ICFO.

    You may mention all types of scientific & research output that occur in your field (refereed articles, non-refereed articles, pre-prints, patents, book chapters, conference reports, outreach actions, etc.). The status of your output must be clearly indicated. You may also wish to include your contribution to supervision, project management, leadership roles, etc. You may include professional contributions outside research/academia


    In a first step of the selection procedure, the evaluation of eligible candidates will be carried out by a selection panel including external, independent experts. The evaluation will be objective, independent, and free of conflicts of interest. The selection will be based on merits and demonstrated performance based on the submitted documentation, taking-into-account the motivation expressed for applying to ICFO and potential fit to the institute, and the research group(s) of interest.

    Applicants will be notified the results of the first evaluation stage by mid-October 2021.

    In the second step of the selection procedure, shortlisted candidates will receive invitations for personal interviews with the selection committee and ICFO Group/Team Leaders, planned to take place by the end of October 2021.

    In this step, evaluation of candidates will be based on the performance at the interview with the selection panel, and fit to the institute and the research group(s) of interest.

    Please note that the personal interviews may take place online depending on the circumstances. Applicants will be notified accordingly.

    Note: If you are from a country with visa-obligations for Spain, please be advised to already inquire (only inquire) regarding the documentation necessary (usually inviting letter ICFO, plus travel and accommodation bookings) and the potential appointment-situation at the local Spanish Embassy/ visa-office.

    The final list with candidates recommended for fellowship concession, as well as reserve candidates, will be available by the beginning of November 2021. Shortlisted candidates must have a hosting group at ICFO, Therefore, shortlisted applicant s will then be asked to contact the Group Leader(s) of their choice to discuss a potential fit in the group. Candidates and Group Leader should confirm within one week whether an agreement has been reached. Candidates without a match cannot be confirmed the fellowship.

    Upon confirmation of acceptance, candidates should start their fellowships, ideally on January 1 ,2021 but there is flexibility to start between January -March 2022.

    A dedicated, external and independent Appeals Panel will be established to rule on the outcome of appeals from the applicants.

    At all stages of the process, candidates may contact ICFO Human Resources and Education via jobs@icfo.eu.

    For updated information about ICFO, please visit https://www.icfo.eu/

    19th of September, 2021

    Identify your interests

    As your career goals and research interests are an integral part of the selection procedure itself, apart from the ICFOjobs site, we encourage you to browse ICFO’s corporate website to learn more about ICFO’s research activities and to identify the projects and/or areas that best match your background. We also recommend that you visit Careers @ ICFO. A clear indication of your interests and goals in your presentation letter will help us in reviewing your candidacy.

    Did you identify an opening meeting your interest and career goals? Then, we are looking forward to your application!

    Should there be no opening matching your interest or background, please contact us at jobs@icfo.eu or directly contact with the relevant ICFO Group Leaders or Unit Heads to explore potential future possibilities in their fields.

    The application process

    If you have identified an opening matching your interests, please read carefully the information about requirements, conditions and necessary application material and start the application process. Candidatures should be submitted online via ICFOjobs, our online application interface, in a 2-step procedure:

    1. Registration:
      The button ‘Apply to this opening’ takes you to the online application form, gathering your personal data for identification purposes. Once submitted, you will receive a link by e-mail, which you must follow in order to continue the application process.
    2. Application:
      In this second step of the process you will be asked to provide further details and the necessary application material, as well as, in some of the openings, to indicate potential referees. All enclosed documentation must be in PDF format or plain text.

    Once the application form is complete and the relevant material has been uploaded, submit your candidature by clicking on the ‘apply’ button. Candidates will receive an automatic reply acknowledging submission including a reference number for further enquiries or updates (within deadline).

    By submitting an application, you grant ICFO permission to use the provided data for the recruiting process. (See Data Protection Policy.)

    The review process

    Applications will first be reviewed to assure that they meet the requirements and conditions as indicated in the job opening. Candidatures will then be evaluated by the corresponding Selection Committee according to the selection criteria of each opening. ICFO is an equal opportunity employer. Candidates are selected exclusively on merit and potential on the basis of submitted application material. No restrictions related to disabilities, citizenship or gender apply to ICFO positions. ICFO abides by the principles of openness, efficiency, transparency, supportiveness, and international comparability as stated in the European Charter for Researchers and the European Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers.

    ICFO will notify candidates who are selected to pass to the next stage in the review process. Candidates who do not pass the first step of the review process will be notified of the outcome of their application at this time.

    When requested, reference letters play an important role in supporting the candidate in the review process. Unless the call applied for indicate specific requirements in that sense, referees will be automatically contacted by ICFO requesting them to complete a standardized evaluation form and submit a letter of support for the candidates. Candidates should by no means submit a reference letter in support of their own candidature on behalf of their referees. The members of the selection committee will have access to reference letters.

    On-site or online interviews (aiming at discussing the candidate’s suitability, project contents, hiring conditions and legal matters, etc.) with the Selection committee may be scheduled.

    Notification of results

    All candidates will be notified of the outcome of their application. Possible results are:

    1. Rejection:
      The Selection Committee reaches the conclusion that the background of other candidate(s) appears to be more suitable for the position.
    2. Waiting list:
      Candidate(s) may be placed on a waiting list based on the shortlist proposed by the Selection Committee. Candidate(s) on this list may receive an offer in the event that the top-candidate does not accept the position. Waiting list candidates will receive a final decision as soon as the top-candidate confirms acceptance.
    3. Acceptance / offer:
      ICFO extends an official offer, asking the selected candidate for formal confirmation of acceptance.

    The selection process is completed as soon as the candidate confirms acceptance of the offered position and a tentative starting date has been agreed.

    After acceptance @ ICFO

    Staff of the ICFO Human Resources and Education Unit will assist new ICFO members with the following procedures:

    • Support with administrative and legal matters related to arriving and settling in, including immigration formalities (Visa application process, etc.) and personal assistance in relocation.
    • Particularly for PhD-students: Information and advice on the necessary academic documentation to be gathered and submitted for enrollment in the PhD in Photonics program, including information about how to legalize previous studies (e.g. BSc, MSc, etc.) whenever necessary, as well as registration to the doctorate program and academic planning.

    ICFO’s applicant database

    The applicant database and all applications received through ICFOjobs, are managed by the staff of ICFO’s Human Resources and Education Unit. All information is handled with due confidentiality and solely for the purpose mentioned, and will be made available to the members of the Selection Committee in so far as they are necessary for the management of the process.

    As indicated through the application process, other relevant information is also gathered for statistical purposes or in order to verify the eligibility requirements indicated in the corresponding call.

    Do I have to submit my application exclusively online or may I also submit a hard copy?

    ICFO only accepts applications submitted online via the ICFOjobs interface. As an exception, and only in case of force-majeure problems with electronic submission, candidates may submit their application in hard copy within the deadline.

    Is it possible to apply for more than one opening? May I apply even if I have been considered for an ICFO opening in the past (i.e., re-application)?


    Do I receive a confirmation acknowledging reception of my application?


    Is it possible to update my personal data or application material? Likewise, will I be able to delete my application (and therefore all personal data)?

    In the first step of application, through the online application form, you will have to provide your personal data including your contact e-mail. Once submitted, you will receive an acknowledging e-mail, containing a link which you have to follow in order to continue with the procedure (submission of application material, etc.). Via the link you receive by e-mail, you will also be able to update your data and application material (within the established deadlines) or even to withdraw your application.

    In case of questions - whom shall I contact for help in submitting my application?

    Please contact the recruiting staff of ICFO’s Human Resources at jobs@icfo.eu.

    Particularly for PhD- and Postdoctoral openings: Is it possible to apply even if I have not yet finished the minimum academic qualification required?

    Yes, unless the call explicitly indicates otherwise, but please indicate this clearly in your presentation letter. In general, candidates should hold an internationally-recognized degree or evidence of its completion before the prospective starting date.

    Applications need to be supported by reference letters. How should these be submitted?

    For exact details on how to proceed with reference letters, please check the specific opening you are applying for. In general, you will be requested to indicate name, institution, contact data, and relationship in the last part of the online application form. Depending on the opening, referees will be automatically contacted by ICFO requesting them to complete a standardized evaluation form and submit a letter of support for the candidates. Candidates should by no means submit a reference letter in support of their own candidature on behalf of their referees.

    Submission of academic transcripts and degrees?

    The required documentation to be submitted for application is indicated in the ‘application process’ of each opening. In general, ICFO will ask that you provide a copy of your most recent academic degree certificate. Additionally, and particularly for fellowships and internship positions, ICFO will also need you to submit scanned copies of your academic transcripts (current and previous studies). The academic transcripts contain the list of courses, including the credits and marks obtained. Provisional degree certificates are generally accepted by ICFO.

    The application form requires the indication of my GPA – what shall I indicate?

    GPA stands for Grade Point Average. Apart from other criteria, selection for ICFO positions, above all for fellowships and internships, is measured in terms of the academic performance. In this regard, ICFO needs an indication of the average of your final overall grade obtained in your studies (stated in your transcripts), the minimum grade required to pass in your university and the maximum grade that can be achieved or the overall qualification obtained in your PhD-studies (for applicants with a PhD-degree).

    Retrieve your application


    You can write an email to Human Resources and Education at ICFO.


    No vacancies matching your profile?

    In the event that there are no published vacancies matching your academic or professional background, you may contact us at jobs@icfo.eu.

    Data Protection Statement

    ICFO endeavours to safeguard and protect the privacy and confidentiality of your personal data pursuant to applicable laws (GDPR) and implementing regulations.

    To help achieve this goal ICFO has drafted a Privacy Policy, which describes how we collect, use and otherwise handle “Personal Information” we receive from you when you use ICFO websites and explains the circumstances in which we may transfer this to others.

    The full policy can be found in ICFO's main website.

    Our Data Privacy Policy must be read together with any other legal notices or terms and conditions also available on our Website (Terms of use and Cookies Policy).

    If you have any questions in relation to this Data Privacy Policy, or if you would like to contact us to exercise your rights as stated in our Privacy Policy, you should check ICFO's website.