Forum:Bioinformatics opportunities in Europe?
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10 months ago
melaniem • 0

I'm an American working in bioinformatics in industry in CA. I may be acquiring EU citizenship within the next year or so and am curious about bioinformatics/data science opportunities in Europe. I'd also like to know which countries are most likely to be friendly to foreigners. It seems like there are a lot of jobs posted in Spain and Germany, so curious about those countries in particular.

Looking forward to hearing people's thoughts.

career • 1.7k views
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Swiss companies seems to have quite a good salary...

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10 months ago

Germany is certainly pretty friendly in this regard, most teams are a mix of people from different countries. If you want to stay in industry then EU citizenship will definitely help, since most companies want to avoid visa issues. Note that salaries will be lower than what you're used to in CA, but so is the cost of living. Regardless of the country you move to, I strongly suggest moving to a decent sized city (rather than a smaller suburb) until you're familiar enough with the local language. You might ask anywhere you interview if they have people that can help with getting you setup in the new location. When I moved to Germany for a post-doc position we had an international welcome officer that was instrumental in arranging things like getting driver's licenses transferred (not easy coming from CA), registering us with the city, setting up accounts and explaining how things worked. Often your coworkers can help with this sort of thing, but a dedicated person is drastically better.

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10 months ago

Where jobs are posted depends a bit on local habits. You may be seeing more from Spain and Germany because they may be posting more on some international/English language sites. For example, here is a site for French bioinformatics jobs (which may also have a few jobs from elsewhere, typically for EU projects).

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Thank you!

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10 months ago

You might also want to consider Sweden, although the difference to sunny California will be quite profound, unfortunately.

The life science research is top-notch and roughly 70% of the people (including the elderly) speak English fluently or at an advanced level - which is second to Denmark only by a narrow margin (for non-native speakers). You have beautiful nature and ample trekking opportunities, excellent public transport, universal healthcare and generous maternity/paternity leave. Furthermore, permanent academic staff scientist positions are not uncommon in Sweden - in contrast e.g. to Germany, where many positions are fixed-term only. I am myself German and have to admit that in terms of working conditions and embracing new technology openly, Sweden is clearly superior.

One caveat with both countries is, that racism is unfortunately rampant. I am always deeply saddened to hear what my Asian or Arab co-workers experience, when they go, for example, house-hunting.

You can find job offers, e.g. at the career page of the Data-Driven Life Sciences program or via the EURAXESS portal (The latter also lists jobs in many other EU countries).

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