Meet the first 6 DDSA Postdoc Fellows awarded in 2023 in this video!

DDSA Postdoc Fellowship Call 2024

Call closed – The call for 2025 is expected to open ultimo November 2024

Open call for the second award of 6 two-year DDSA Postdoc Fellowships of DKK 1.2 million each! We award visionary and creative-thinking young data scientists who wants to pursue their own research ideas in collaboration with a strong host environment at a Danish research institution. Application deadline is February 28, 2024. 


Call for Applications

Danish Data Science Academy (DDSA) invites applications for six two-year postdoctoral fellowships of DKK 1,200,000 (+ 5% administrative costs) to individual research projects. Our purpose is to support visionary and creative-thinking young data scientists pursuing their own research ideas in collaboration with a strong host environment at a Danish research institution.

The proposed research project must be aligned with the research scope of the DDSA Postdoc funder, the Novo Nordisk Foundation.

It is a requirement that the applicant has a well-defined research proposal as well as an agreement with a host institution. Furthermore, the candidate must begin the research project prior to December 15, 2024, unless otherwise agreed with DDSA.

We also welcome applications from candidates who applied for a Postdoc Fellowship during the 2023 rounds of applications, but who did not receive a grant.

Deadline for applications is February 28, 2024, at 23.59 (UTC + 01:00). 

Applications must be submitted via the DDSA Funding Portal.

Please note that DDSA Postdoc Fellowship does not fund industrial Postdocs.  

Please make sure to read the full application guidelines before you start your application process.  

Applications not fulfilling the requirements will be rejected without further consideration. In this case, you will receive a formal rejection. 


The DDSA Postdoc Fellowship is a fixed individual research grant supporting early career data scientists to develop and consolidate their individual research identity and scientific network. By focusing on academic freedom and the researcher-driven idea, we aim to engage and empower the new generation of talented data science researchers in Denmark.  

DDSA encourages cross-disciplinary and collaborative projects. The interdisciplinary aspect is not limited to spanning theory and application but can also span different applications or different theoretical approaches.

If granted a DDSA Fellowship, you will join a vibrant community of young data scientists #GrowingDanishDataScience across scientific domains and disciplines.

Who can Apply?

We welcome applications that combine strong data science qualifications, creativity, passion for research, and the desire to engage with the data science community. 

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, ethnicity, disability, nationality, or religion are encouraged to apply.   

Eligibility Criteria 


By time of application, you must have a PhD degree, or your PhD thesis must be accepted for defense prior to June 1, 2024. 

You must have received your PhD degree within six years of the application deadline (leave of absence excluded). 

You must also have an agreement with a Danish host institution. DDSA strongly encourages you to carry out your postdoc project in a different institution than the institution where you obtained your PhD degree to increase mobility. 

You must have high-level proficiency in oral and written English. 

Please note: Due to the Postdoc 4-Year Rule (Danish legislation) you are not eligible to apply for a DDSA postdoc fellowship if you have been employed in a postdoctoral position for more than two years at the university that you have a hosting agreement with prior to commencement of a DDSA postdoc fellowship.

Postdoc 4-Year Rule (Danish Legislation): Employment as a postdoctoral researcher can take place up to a maximum of 4 years at the same university in Denmark. For more information, please contact your host institution or find more information in the Executive Order on Employment Structure (Stillingsstruktur) for Scientific Staff at Universities (only available in Danish).


Host Institution 

The host institution must be a Danish research institution within the field of your Postdoc project.  

The host institution must provide a statement in support of the candidate agreeing to host the Postdoc applicant for the full two years of employment as well as commit to offer appropriate work conditions. 


Research Project 

Your project must be within a field of data science, and may concern basic theoretical research, development of new data science methods and technologies, and/or innovative applications of data science to generate new important insights. 

Projects mainly concerned with methods development must argue convincingly for the potential application and impact.   

Projects that have their primary focus on applications of state-of-the-art data science methods must argue convincingly for the novelty and impact of their data science approach and for the importance of the new knowledge generated.  

The project must be aligned with the research scope of the DDSA Postdoc funder, the Novo Nordisk Foundation. 


How to Apply

You apply by submitting your application to the DDSA Funding Portal. Please make sure to carefully read the application guidelines below before you start your application process.   

Deadline for submitting your final application is February 28, 2024, at 23:59 (UTC + 01:00). 

Application Guidelines

Applications not fulfilling the requirements will be rejected without further consideration. In this case, you will receive a formal rejection.

Applications must be submitted via the DDSA Funding Portal. We encourage applicants to log in to the funding portal for details on the application form in good time before submitting the application.

The application form is divided into three sections: Research Project, Research Environment, and Applicant Qualifications. You may at any time skip forward and back between the sections and save and view changes made to your application prior to submitting.

Your application must be written in English and must include the following:




Max. 2,500 characters  

  • Abstract in English briefly describing purpose, methods, and significance of the project.

Project Description

Max. 8,000 characters excluding figures/tables and list of literature cited (uploaded in separate fields) 

The project description should include: 

  • Background and state of the art 
  • Research questions and methods 
  • Outcome and potential impact 
  • Literature cited

Please note, it is not possible to write your project description in Latex.

Data Availability Statement (Optional)

Max. 2,500 characters  

It is a prerequisite, that the proposed research is conducted in agreement with The Danish Code of Conduct for Research Integrity. Furthermore, if the specific project contains elements of potential ethical concern, please enclose a statement describing these as well as a presentation of measures to ensure responsible research conduct. If the research requires approval from ethical committees, this should be stipulated along the expected approval processing time. 

Motivation Letter 

Max. 4,500 characters  

The motivation letter should address the following: 

  • What is your motivation for doing a Postdoc? 
  • What is your motivation for addressing the research questions? 
  • Why are you the right candidate to carry out this project? 
  • How will your research and results impact science and society more broadly? 



Description of Research Environment

Max. 2,500 characters

Please describe how the collaboration is a good match, and how the host environment will support you in successfully carrying out your research project.

Your Scientific Development

Max. 2,500 characters

Please include your reflections on how the research project will contribute to your scientific profile and your development as data science researcher, including your development into an independent researcher engaging in national and international collaborations.

Statements of Support from Host Institution and Collaborator(s)

Please provide:

  • Statement of Support from Your Nearest PI at the Host Institution: A description of the research environment where the postdoctoral project will be carried out, including a description of the synergy between research environment and the candidate’s qualifications. If the collaboration is cross-disciplinary please include a description of how supervision of the additional discipline is envisioned.
  • Statement of Support from Major Collaborators: You may add up to 2 statements of support from major collaborators (Optional).
  • Host Institution Statement: A signed confirmation from the Head of Department agreeing to host the Postdoc candidate for two years of employment as well as committing to offer appropriate work conditions to carry out the research project.



Max. 6,000 characters 

Your CV should include: 

  • Your educational background 
  • Previous employments  
  • Additional qualifications, for instance: data science and programming experience, honors, participation in research conferences/meetings/presentations, teaching experiences,  assessment, and review activities, change of environments national, and internationally, etc.

Recommendation Letter / Other CV Documentation (Optional)

Max. 2 uploads

Publication / Presentation List  

E.g., peer-reviewed publications and conference papers (incl. the status of the paper: published/accepted/under review/preprint), posters, oral presentations, keynotes, and invited talks. 


Please submit a copy of your PhD diploma.  

If you do not yet have a PhD degree by the time of application, please provide a statement from your principal PhD supervisor stating when the thesis will be handed in, as well as when the defense is expected to take place. Your PhD thesis must be accepted for defense prior to June 1, 2024. A copy of the PhD degree certificate must be forwarded to DDSA no later than December 15, 2024. If you have not forwarded a copy of your degree prior to December 15, 2024, the fellowship will be withdrawn.

Evaluation Criteria

The proposed research project must be aligned with the research scope of the DDSA Postdoc funder, the Novo Nordisk Foundation. 

Applications will be evaluated based on the following seven criteria. Each criterion is given equal weight: 

1. Applicant Quality   

  • Prior academic achievements and performance 
  • Data science and programming experience 
  • Motivation and creativity 
  • Research experience 
  • References  
  • Publications  

2. Scientific Independency and Collaboration 

  • Does the research project contribute to the candidate’s scientific profile and his/her development as a data science researcher, including the development into an independent researcher?
  • Has the candidate established national and international collaborations outside his/her own research group/institution (e.g., co-authored publications, co-applications for grants, joint contributions to scientific meetings, research exchanges)? 

3. Research Quality (novelty, originality, motivation) 

  • Is the proposed research idea novel?  
  • Are stated research hypotheses consistent and appropriate? 
  • Is the state-of-the-art of the relevant research field adequately described? 
  • Is the proposed research likely to produce exciting new knowledge? 
  • Is the proposed project sufficiently focused? 

4. Research Impact (on e.g., academic, cultural, societal, economic, health or environmental issues)  

  • Is the proposed new knowledge generated useful across scientific domains? 
  • Will the proposed research have a high impact? E.g., generate new scientific paradigms or facilitate new analyses that are likely to lead to novel important insights? 
  • Will the proposed research impact (multiple) research fields within the DDSA Postdoc research scope?

5. Feasibility (the likelihood for the project to obtain the goals envisioned) 

  • Is the proposed project technically feasible? 
  • Is the relevant data available and accessible to conduct the proposed research 
  • Is the research described realistic given the resources available (applicant + hosting institution) 
  • Is there access to necessary computing resources, equipment, etc.? 
  • Are potential ethical aspects satisfactorily addressed where relevant? 

6. Collaboration (the combined quality of the research team (applicant and supervisor) and the broader research environment at the hosting institution)  

  • Is there a high synergy between applicant experience and hosting scientific environment? 
  • Is collaboration cross-disciplinary? 
  • Is there adequate scientific quality available in the hosting scientific environment to realize the proposed research project? 
  • What is the level of scientific excellence of the hosting environment? 
  • Is the synergy of applicant and hosting environment well argued in the application? 

7. Alignment with the scope of DDSA  

Evaluation and Selection Process

The evaluation and selection process is conducted by the DDSA Fellowship Evaluation Committee (FEC), consisting of six international members and six Danish members. The evaluation process is divided into two steps: 

1. Scientific Evaluation: Each application is individually evaluated by up to four assessors, followed by a full committee discussion meeting. Based on the discussion of applicants, FEC selects 12 candidates for interview. 

2. Candidate Interview: The 12 candidates are invited to present their project proposals in a 15-minute virtual interview. Based on this, FEC recommends 6 grant recipients for the DDSA Board of Directors’ approval. 

Please note that interviews will be conducted during week 21 in May, 2024.



Award Notification and Rejection of Applications

Applicants not invited for interview will be informed by ultimo May, 2024. Applicants will receive numerical feedback only. 

Candidates invited for interview but not selected for a Fellowship will receive individual feedback on the proposed research project as well as the interview performance medio June 2024. 

Candidates awarded a Postdoc Fellowship will primo June 2024, receive a phone call followed by a grant agreement specifying the grant conditions.


Terms and Practicalities

The DDSA Postdoc Fellowship 

The Fellowship (DKK 1,200,000 + 5% administrative cost, amounting to a total of DKK 1,260,000) is expected to cover two years of salary, as well as relevant travel – and operational costs. The grant may only be used for the specific project applied for.  

If the total cost of the Postdoc project should exceed the fixed amount granted, the hosting institution is expected to cover such additional expenses. 

If the applicant receives another grant covering salary for the same project as described in the application to DDSA, DDSA reserves the right to withdraw the Postdoc Fellowship.

Please note that DDSA does not fund industrial Postdocs. 

The Postdoc Project 

The research project must be conducted in agreement with The Danish Code of Conduct for Research Integrity. 


Employment is for two years at the host institution where the research project is to be carried out. The host institution must be a Danish research institution (e.g., university or hospital).  

Employment must be prior to December 15, 2024. If this is not achieved, the Fellowship will be retracted, unless otherwise agreed with DDSA.

Postdocs will receive a monthly salary during the employment period. Terms of employment and salary are according to the agreement between the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations and the Danish Ministry of Finance.  

Further inquiries about employment must be directed towards the hosting institution.  

For International Applicants

Inquiries about residence permit must be directed towards the hosting institution. 

Most Danish universities have information sites for international staff about living and working as a researcher in Denmark. 

See for example: 

Aalborg University 

University of Aarhus 

Copenhagen Business School 

University of Copenhagen 

IT University of Denmark 

Roskilde University 

University of Southern Denmark 

Technical University of Denmark