Monday (13th of April) schedule

Download the schedule here.

Tuesday (14th of April) schedule

Download the schedule here


Monday speakers

This year our guest speakers come from a wide variety of disciplines, and hopefully this will encourage you to consider a broad range of career opportunities for your future endeavors.

Mark Schmid

International product manager, Roche Diagnostics International

Roche Diagnostics provides diagnostic solutions to laboratories, hospitals and doctors around the world. As an International Product Manager (IPM) Mark is responsible and accountable for the success of a specific product line, more specifically, a marker that is used to diagnose and monitor diabetes as well as a basic panel of diagnostic markers which are routinely used to diagnose common illnesses.

As an IPM he has the global responsibility for his products, and his work is very diverse. Mark is in daily contact with the sales organizations in the countries to answer specific questions and to support the sales process. Mark is also in contact with the Logistics department to plan demands and ensure that customers have sufficient product available. One big part is the interaction with the company's R&D department and groups, where a regular exchange on a technical and scientific level takes place, new innovations and product improvements are discussed.

Mark is also responsible for initiating new product developments which means that he has to decide what a new product should look like and what features and specifications it should have. This means looking at existing products as well as talking to doctors to find out what they need to better treat patients.

His work involves visiting countries and customers to drive the business forward. This includes talking to doctors face to face as well as giving presentations to customers as well as at large events and congresses. When looking at what this job requires, it is a mixture of scientific knowledge and business knowledge. One needs to be handle a multitude of projects and topics while having a detailed knowledge and understanding of the distinct products.

You can also take a look at Mark's CV to see how he made it to his current position as an international product manager at Roche.

Sonia Bastidas

Principal scientist, Bioanalytics, Novartis

Sonia Bastidas's job as a principal scientist at Novartis is the development, validation and implementation of bioanalytical methods under GMP. Her main focus is the potency testing of therapeutic proteins for clinical use, but she is also responsible for the determination of high-molecular weight impurities such as host cell derived proteins and DNA.

Sonia designs, plans, performs, interprets and reports the results of scientific experiments for the preparation and timely delivery of drug substances and drug products, processes and procedures. She leads and manages all project/local network activities, supports/coaches team members, participates in sub-teams and contributes to the overall Novartis goals.

You can also take a look at Sonia's CV to see how she made it to her current position as a principal scientist at Novartis.

Stephanie Schonegg

Clinical studies, CRM (Cardiac Rhythm Management)/EP (Electrophysology) Site Management

After finishing her postoctoral training at MPI-CBG in 2008, Stephanie Schonegg took a job as Project Manager at Parexel International GmbH (Berlin). From there she moved to a position of Teamleader Project Management at Biotronik SE & Co KG in 2012. Since September last year, she became the CRM/EP Site Manager at the same company.

For a clinical investigation (study), hospitals should be carefully selected to meet the specific design of the investigation and to be capable to include the target patient population in foresee-able time. One of Stephanie's roles now is to support project managers to identify suitable hospitals with adequate staff, infrastructure and patient population to meet the study requirements.

Anne Schaafhausen

Pattent attorney, Weickmann & Weickmann

Anne Schaafhausen studied Biology at the Julius Maximilian University in Würzburg, where she obtained her PhD in biochemistry/proteomics/molecular genetics. Since 2011 she is working on intellectual property at Weickmann & Weickmann as a patent attorney.

Stephane Berghmans

Vice President Academic & Research Relations, Elsevier

Stephane Berghmans is a Doctor in Veterinary Medicine who obtained his Ph.D. studying epigenetic mechanisms of inheritance and developing expertise in genetics and molecular biology at the University of Liege mentored by Prof. Michel Georges (Belgium). He then became a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard Medical School in Prof. Thomas Look's laboratory, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, where he helped established zebrafish as a model organism to study cancer.

Seeing the opportunity for a more direct application of zebrafish in drug discovery, he moved to the biotech sector and joined DanioLabs (Cambridge, UK) in 2004 where he headed development, implementation and automation of zebrafish drug discovery and liability assays for early in vivo compound screening. He moved to Portland (Oregon, USA) in 2008 where he joined Znomics as Director of Biology, installing new research teams and facilities.

Rich from a strategic experience in the private sector and interested in science policy, he joined the European Science Foundation in June 2009 as Head of the Biomedical Sciences Unit. In this position he managed the secretariat general for the European Medical Research Councils (EMRC) with activities spanning from science management to scientific networks and a very strong emphasis on science policy and strategy. Stephane joined the Global Academic & Research Relations team at Elsevier in 2013 where he holds a non-commercial VP position in the Global Academic Relations team, overseeing EU strategic initiatives, partnerships, and stakeholder needs.

You can look through Stephane's CV to see more information on how he got to his current position.

Dagmar Meyer

Policy Adviser, European Research Council Executive Agency (ERCEA)

Dagmar Meyer obtained her PhD in mathematics, and after finishing her postdoctorate training worked as an assistant professor at Georg-August-Universität in Göttingen. Overall, she has thirteen years of experience as an academic researcher.

After that she stepped out of the academic field and joined the EU FP7 program, where she acted as the Irish National Contact Point, providing support and assistance to applicants to the EU's FP7 'People' and 'Research Potential' program. On top of that she was the National Delegate for these programs. In 2009, she moved on to become a Policy Officer at the European Commission for three years to work on policy issues related to the "European Partnership for Researchers" and the "Modernization Agenda for Universities". In 2012, Dagmar joined the European Research Council Executive Agency (ERCEA) to work, in particular, on issues related to open access and horizontal issues.

During her career, she has been also a board member of the Marie Curie Fellowship association (2000-2005), and has been activiely involved in a number of joint projects with other European organisations.

For her, the issues related to mobility of researchers and scientific careers is very important, which is why she focuses her work on human resources in science and technology (in particular career prospects for early career researchers, researcher mobility, gender issues, work-life balance), open access policies, etc.

Ralph Meiers

Policy making, Max Planck Society

Ralph Meiers is a member of the Max Planck Society's evaluation, where he is responsible for the Scientific Advisory Boards of all MPIs, for coordinating the evaluation of the International Max Planck Research Schools, and for the advancement of the evaluation policies of the Max Planck Society in general. Before landing his job at the MPG, he worked at the Center for Evaluation at Saarbrücken, as a research associate for higher education, educational policy and online research. He also obtained his PhD there.

Ralph Meiers has participated in several courses focusing on leadership and management, communication and evaluation. Refer to Ralph's CV for specific details.

Ralph Meiers is also a MPG delegate to Science Europe, an association of European Research Funding Organisations (RFO) and Research Performing Organisations (RPO).

Graham Scholefield

Consultant, Catenion

Graham Scholefield is an Associate with Catenion, a boutique strategy consulting firm specializing in the biopharma space. The firm addresses key strategic problems facing the client, ranging in scope from a particular drug candidate to high-level corporate planning, for example; what is the optimum clinical development plan for a compound? What is the risk profile of our current portfolio and how can we optimize it? Given our goals, how can we enable the firm to achieve them by year X?

Prior to this, he investigated the regulation of DNA replication initiation in the labs of Professor Jeff Errington FRS and Dr Heath Murray at Newcastle University in the UK, where he published several first-author papers and was subsequently awarded the University Doctoral Prize Medal.

Jakob Suckale

Lecturer in Biochemistry, University of Tübingen

Jakob obtained his PhD from MPI-CBG, and worked as a postdoctorate researcher in the biomedical sciences at the Technische Universität Dresden. In 2012 he decided to take a job as a lecturer at the University of Tübingen, where he teaches biochemistry for master students and undergraduates. He is also involved in coordinating the Masters program there (admission, organization, course acquisition & timing).

Kat Arney

Science information officer, Cancer Research UK
Writer/broadcaster for The Naked Scientists

Kat Arney works as a science information officer for the charity Cancer Research UK in London, when she's not off playing the harp and the spoons. She completed her degree and PhD at Cambridge University, and did time in a lab next to Wormwood Scrubs prison before finally leaving research.

Kat writes science articles for the Naked Scientists website and helps to present the Naked Scientists science Radio Show and podcast. She also presents and produces the Cancer Research UK podcast and writes for the charity’s Science Update blog. She also writes occasionally for online science magazine Lablit, plays in several bands, is a keen knitter and her hobby isstaying awake for extended periods of time. **Hence her personal motto:** Live fast, die tired.

Tuesday speakers

As a treat to this year's Career Day, we bring you a minisymposium on Entrepreneurship or "how to make your idea come to life". Come and listen to some of local entrepreneurs talk about how they started their own companies.

Michael Alvers

CEO, Transinsight

About Michael:
Dr. Michael R. Alvers has extensive management experience in various high-tech companies in positions such as Director Bioinformatics, Director Product Marketing and Business, and Director Product Development. In addition, he has considerable experience managing large software projects. He is the initiator and creator of Proteomweaver, an award-winning software package for biological image analysis. He has total responsibility for the company’s strategic business direction, corporate finances, and staffing. He manages a number of national and international research projects: the EU Project BioASQ, the BMWi projects GoOn and GeneCloud, and the BMBF Project Go3R. Michael also teaches as a guest professor for Informatics at the University of Applied Sciences Mittweida. Michael is Percelain Designer, received a Masters degree in Geophysics, and holds a Ph.D. in Geophysics, both from the Freie Universität Berlin. He has studied and worked in Berlin, Stanford, Munich, Dresden, and La Plata, Argentina. He has attended and conducted various expeditions to the Central Andes and to the North Pole. Michael also holds a private pilot’s license (Stanford Flying Club, 1994).

About the company:
The company Transinsight provides software-platforms (Enterprise Semantic Intelligence or ESI) for individual solutions in the area of semantic search and knowledge management. ESI is a modular system designed to intelligently find the right information. It provides a high degree of flexibility, which makes it easy to implement single components in different environments. Enterprise Semantic Intelligence® is highly scalable and is designed for thousands of concurrent users. More resources can be integrated into the system using the ESI cloud solution.

Frank Götz

Qualitype GmbH

About Frank:
Frank Götz studied biology and computer science at the TU Darmstadt, where he also obtained his PhD in Biology. After that he has held various positions in IT/Bioinformatics at different pharmaceutical companies such as Merck, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals Mermaid and Siemens Medical Solutions, giving him an ample background in software development for big companies. On the basis of that Frank now co-owns a software-based company called Qualitype GmbH, where he is the Managing Director.

About the company:
Qualitype GmbH was founded in Dresden in 2001 and is an established software company specialized in the areas of forensics, clinical data management, and food safety. With state-of-the-art technology and excellent trained staff Qualitype meets the manifold demands and challenges in biotechnology and bioinformatics. Qualitype GmbH is experienced in the realization of projects of various scale and complexity for many years. Besides standardized software products, the company's services range from innovative concepts to the development of efficient solutions and their successful implementation. Additionally, they also offer consulting, training, and support for all their business areas. Their products/applications are in use in over 25 countries.

Sebastian Harmel

CEO/CCO, Ideenfabrik (K-52)

About Sebastian:
"After many years in a rigid structure with traditional patterns of thinking I wanted to be free. I dreamt of a place where I could simply take also my family with me, when I wanted to, a place that is friendly, where the doors are wide open and has a wow factor." Sebastian Harmel has a M. A. in history and adult education, he is a veteran and trimmed of life on strategy development and improvisation.

About the company:
The company Ideenfabrik is basically a business incubator that is made for people who have good ideas and want to bring them to life. The company will enable access to resources, technology, knowledge and networks, and aspires to bring out the innovation of the projects and the people involved. The core elements of the Ideenfabrik's concept are creative work, workshops and production. Ideenfabrik provides stepwise support and formal framework for all projects inside the incubator. Profits are reinvested in the factory, so that next users of the incubator can benefit from the resources.

Tobias Göcke

R&D, IT, product manager, Chemtics

About the company:
"Chemistry makes fun!“ - with this attitude the team of ChemTics develops innovative web-based chemistry sets. This enables pioneering individual learning experience for students from middle school all the way to the studies at universities. The base of the innovative web-based chemistry set is modern design and usability together with current web-technology (HTML5). For the best results, the team of ChemTics works hard and intensely together with chemistry teachers from global schools and universities.