Vacancy for IBS Research Center Directors


Deadline: 29 February 2020

 Selection Type

○ A scientist who is capable of conducting large-scale, long-term, group research will be selected as a new director and will organize a new HQ Center.

  • A selected applicant may organize his/her Center with various structures (e.g., having co-director(s) and/or associate director(s)).

※ In principle, the scientist selected as a new director is required to commence his/her research by December 2020. (The commencement date may be adjusted under special circumstances)

※ The 2020 selection of co-director(s) will not take place.

 Research Areas

○ All areas of basic science and interdisciplinary sciences

  • Applications from those in IBS Designated Research Areas will be given priority in review.

※ Please refer to for details of the Designated Research Areas.

 Requirements and Selection Criteria for Director Position

○ Requirements

  • A researcher who is capable of conducting large-scale, long-term, group research in basic science.
  • A researcher whose capability is equivalent to that of a chair professor at a globally recognized university or a director of a Max Planck Institute in a relevant area. Or a researcher who has potential to reach the aforementioned level in the near future.
  • A researcher who can devote himself/herself to research and Center operation for a long period of time (10 years or more).

○ Selection criteria

  • Select candidates after comprehensively examining applicants’ scientific excellence and adequacy of submitted research plans based on qualitative evaluation by domestic and overseas scholars.
  • Scientific excellence: Supremacy of research outcomes, research capabilities and potential, etc.
  • Adequacy of research plan: Adequacy and feasibility of Center organization and operation plan, research budget and its allocation, plan to foster young scientists, and mid- to long-term development plan and visions.

 Selection Procedure

○ Candidate search by February 2020: Two means - open recruitment and recruitment by Search Committee (SC)* - will be utilized.
  * Committee composed of domestic and overseas scholars will be formed by area to search for excellent candidates.

○ Selection of in-depth evaluation candidates by April 2020

○ In-depth evaluation by August 2020

○ Comprehensive evaluation and consultation by Scientific Advisory Board by October 2020

○ Negotiation and appointment by November 2020
  ※ Please refer to Attachment 3 for details of director selection procedure.

 Center Budget

○ The proposed budget on the application form will be carefully reviewed during the selection and evaluation procedure for directors. Once the selection is completed, the proposed budget will be adjusted and approved by the IBS Research Review Committee.

○ The research plan, which is required to be included in the application form, must have details (e.g., research period, list of necessary facilities and equipment, required budget, annual plan) of start-up expenses for large-scale facilities and equipment that should be constructed at an early stage of Center establishment.

  • Start-up expenses will be provided separately after deliberation. The expenses should be separately stated in the application.

※ Whether or not to provide the expenses or the provided amount may change according to the circumstances of IBS.

○ If a director applicant has plans to recruit co-director(s) or associate director(s) within the proposed research period, relevant plans and required budgets must be specified in the application.

 Details of Director Position

○ Directors are required to work full time in principle. Their labor costs will be negotiated with the IBS President and will become effective upon signing of the contract.

○ Directors will be given autonomy in organizing their Center, including personnel, research plan, and budget allocation.

○ Directors are not allowed to apply for other Korean government-funded research projects in principle.
  ※ Those who are participating in Basic Science Research Programs of the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) may commence their research as IBS directors after the completion of the (phased) programs.

○ Center review will take place every three years, except for the first review, which takes place in the fifth years after the Center’s research commencement. Review results will determine whether to provide continued support. If it is decided to close a Center/research group, a one-year grace period will be given.

 Application Submission

○ Fill in the application form (Attachment 1) in English, save it as a combined PDF file (file name: applicant name_Director_submission date), and send it to

○ Those who qualify for the in-depth evaluation will be notified in May 2020.