Postdoctoral grant

Max Planck Institute for Ornithology, Seewiesen

Behavioral Sciences Microbiology & Ecology Neurosciences Physiology

(Job code Seew 08/2017)

Type of Job


Postdoctoral Grant - Comparative Cognition

Job offer from July 12, 2017

The Max Planck Institute for Ornithology (MPIO) in Seewiesen (located near Starnberg, about 50 km from Munich) is an internationally renowned research institution with more than 200 employees working in four departments and nine research groups. The research group of Comparative Cognition (Dr. Auguste von Bayern) runs a research station in collaboration with the Loro Parque Fundación (LPF) on Tenerife, Spain. In this regard, a third-party funded grant is offered, financed by the “Animal Minds Project”, and invites applications for a Postdoctoral grant in Comparative Cognition.

Your tasks

We are interested in the evolution and mechanisms of complex cognition in birds (parrots and corvids) using a comparative approach. Access to the greatest parrot collection in the world comprising over 350 (sub)species of parrots and a laboratory with over 40 trained parrots (touch screen, exchange paradigm etc.) of 4 species (and further corvid species in Germany) allows comparative cognitive studies at a new scale and on a new large-brained model system.

The work will focus on socio-cognitive abilities of parrots in relation to ecology/life history both in the laboratory and in the breeding station of the LPF. Other topics might be covered additionally as the postdoc will be responsible for coordinating and mentoring a team of (post)graduate students working on different projects. The position includes opportunities to teach at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich.

Your profile

Applicants should hold a PhD in animal cognition or experimental / developmental psychology, and have a minimum of two years of Postdoc research experience in animal cognition and/or developmental psychology of human children. Good statistical skills in relevant subjects are desirable. High self-motivation and ability to work independent and in a team are an absolute must. Additionally, the position requires team-leading skills, good organization and time management skills and writing proficiency. Basic knowledge of Spanish is helpful.

Our offer

The starting date will be summer/autumn 2017 but no later than 30th of September 2017. The position is available initially for two years but can be extended subject to satisfactory performance. The monthly stipend will be 2,325.00 euros and will be paid directly through the “Animal Minds Project”. For further information, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Auguste von Bayern, .

Your application

The Max-Planck society is committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified individuals. Furthermore, the Max Planck Society seeks to increase the number of women in those areas where they are underrepresented and therefore explicitly encourages women to apply.

Deadline for applications: 07.08.2017. Please submit a cover letter (describing your research interests, experience and goals), your CV, copies of degree certificates and a list of three references as one single PDF preferred via e-mail to or via mail to

Max Planck Institute for Ornithology
Human Resources Department
82319 Seewiesen

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