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Vacant Positions

DIRECTOR OF THE BRAIN PRIZE

The Lundbeck Foundation founded The Brain Prize in 2011 as the world’s largest brain research prize. The prize is a personal prize and awarded every year to one or more researchers for outstanding scientific contributions to brain research. The prize is worth DKK 10,000,000 and is awarded at a special event in Copenhagen, which brings together leaders from the scientific, business and policy communities in Denmark and across the world. Until 2017, The Brain Prize was aimed only at European scientists. However, the prize became global in 2018 and it now targets scientists from all over the world. Nominees undergo a strictly managed scientific evaluation process which is led and steered by The Brain Prize Selection Committee. The committee meets twice a year. Furthermore, The Brain Prize is accompanied by an ambitious Outreach Programme, which comprises lectures, workshops, seminars and exchange programmes aimed at spreading knowledge, creating interest, drawing attention to the challenge of brain research and new discoveries.

The role – Director of The Brain Prize

The Director of The Brain Prize is an independent programme leadership role and the incumbent is part of the Lundbeck Foundation Grants & Prizes team, which is responsible for the Lundbeck Foundation’s grant-giving activities. The team consists of 10 people who are led by Senior Vice President for Grants & Prizes Jan Egebjerg. The Director of The Brain Prize will work closely with colleagues at the Lundbeck Foundation and with a variety of international and external stakeholders and partners in the international scientific community. Some travel must therefore be expected as the Director will participate in meetings around the world.

The overall challenge for the new Director of The Brain Prize is to lead and develop scientific recognition of The Brain Prize and, in collaboration with the communication team, to drive local and global branding of The Brain Prize in order to raise visibility and awareness both in Denmark and throughout the scientific community. This requires extensive interaction with scientific communities abroad as well as close collaboration with the Lundbeck Foundation’s communication and event team.

The key priorities of the position can be summarised as follows;

  • A) Leading and driving the scientific selection process for The Brain Prize. This involves:
    • Planning, preparing and following up on the work of the Selection Committee
    • Planning and implementing the best possible process for nominating candidates to the Selection Committee
    • Planning and executing the main events in collaboration with the Lundbeck Foundation communication and event team
    • Communicating the award in Denmark and internationally, focusing in particular on neuroscience organisations and promoting Danish research in the international neuroscience community
  • B) Managing the Outreach Programme.

The Director of The Brain Prize is responsible for planning, preparing and executing the Outreach Programme for The Brain Prize.  This involves lectures, seminars and talent exchange programmes to follow up on the annual award and includes;

    • Planning, preparing and executing the Outreach Programme
    • Collaborating with the relevant forums in Denmark and internationally on meetings and lectures  
    • Building relationships with relevant forums in the prize-winners’ home countries and internationally to raise awareness of The Brain Prize and of the winners.
  • C) Relationship-building with the neuroscience community.

The Director of The Brain Prize is the Lundbeck Foundation’s key point of contact to international neuroscience organisations such as DSFN, SfN, FENS, ECNP, EAN, BNA, JNS and CAN. The Director of The Brain Prize also represents the Lundbeck Foundation at relevant annual meetings and forums such as Annual SFN meeting, FENS Forum, ECNP congress, EAN congress, JNS annual meeting, CAN annual meeting, Brain Conferences, BNA festival of neuroscience, Public Lecture AU and Neuroscience Day AU.

  • D) Facilitating The Brain Prize Academy

The Lundbeck Foundation has established The Brain Prize Academy, which gathers former and current prize winners as ambassadors for The Brain Prize and for neuroscience research in general and acts as an informal advisory board for the Lundbeck Foundation’s leadership. The Director of The Brain Prize is responsible for the planning and implementation of the meetings in the Lundbeck Foundation Brain Prize Academy and in the Danish neuroscience research community.

  • E) Internationalisation and talent development

In addition to managing all key scientific activities related to The Brain Prize, the Director of The Brain Prize will take a broader role in the Lundbeck Foundation’s grant-giving activities, with responsibility for driving the internationalisation of local research talents. As part of its talent development agenda, the Lundbeck Foundation wishes to strengthen international collaboration and the international exposure of local talent through exchanges, collaboration and relationships with the international research community.

The role has no formal people management responsibilities but is considered a complex leadership challenge in view of the external stakeholder management and programme leadership activities.

Expectations regarding background, experience, skills and competencies

The Lundbeck Foundation wishes to recruit a scientific leader with a passion for science and the energy and analytical skills to oversee a multitude of challenges and activities related to The Brain Prize, both in Denmark and internationally. The following qualifications and skills are expected;

  • Scientific PhD or similar, preferably within health science and combined with academic/basic research experience.
  • Knowledge and experience of scientific work, preferably within health research, in Denmark or internationally. Experience of brain and neuroscience research is not considered a ‘must have’ but is highly relevant. An interest in brain and neuroscience research is essential. 
  • Excellent abilities to collaborate and build relationships with high level scientific profiles in Denmark and internationally but also with colleagues in the Lundbeck Foundation at all levels. Hence a good mix of analytical skills, curiosity and passion for science and excellent empathy and strong social skills are expected. 
  • Strong planning skills, and a powerful ability to lead projects and maintain a clear overview of complex scientific material.
  • Executive presence; excellent reputation with the ability to inspire confidence and gain respect even from people with strong convictions.
  • Strong communication skills, both oral and written, as well as outstanding proficiency in English.

Other

The position should be filled as soon as possible and is based in Copenhagen, Denmark. 

Further information

For further information, please contact Senior Vice President, Grants & Prizes, Jan Egebjerg, +45 39128006 or at je@lundbeckfonden.com

To apply for the position, please send your application and CV to ib@lundbeckfonden.com before 1 February 2020.

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