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17 May 2017

Full-Time Legal Officer

EMBL – European Molecular Biology Laboratory – Posted by admin Heidelberg, Baden-Württemberg, Germany


Job Description

Legal Officer

Staff Category: Staff Member
Contract Duration: 3 years (renewable up to 9 years)
Grading: 4, 5 or 6, depending on qualifications and experience
Closing Date: 25 June 2017
Reference Number: HD_01094

Job Description

The European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) is one of the most highly ranked scientific research organizations in the world. The EMBL Administration is responsible for providing administrative services to 1,600 members of personnel from over 80 nations based at the headquarters in Heidelberg (Germany) as well as those at its sites in Grenoble (France), Hamburg (Germany), Hinxton (UK), Monterotondo (Italy) and Barcelona (Spain). The official languages of EMBL are English, French and German.

The unit “Legal Services” is located in EMBL’s Headquarter in Heidelberg and has overall responsibility for all legal matters involving EMBL, both nationally as well as internationally. Given EMBL’s status as an International Organisation, its operation is governed by the rules of International Public and Private Law. The activities and decisions have to comply with the applicable regulations and rules in all countries in which EMBL has a presence.

EMBL offers and maintains a vibrant, cooperative, team-oriented and open working atmosphere, and Legal Services is a diverse team of different nationalities and gender.

The post holder will be supervised by and report to the Head of Legal Services. He/she will be exposed to a wide variety of legal matters and be required to perform a broad range of legal work, including research, drafting, negotiations, etc.

Practice areas covered by Legal Services include the following, and responsibilities for the post holder will be set by the Head of Legal Services:

  • (Scientific) Cooperation agreements;
  • Research Grants & Consortia;
  • Large-scale research infrastructures and related projects;
  • Human Resources matters and Staff Disputes;
  • EMBL status/institutional matters (Privileges & Immunities, Relations with the Host Countries, etc.);
  • Relations with other international, research or commercial organisations;
  • Relations with EMBL Member States;
  • Litigation/Arbitration;
  • Commercial contracts;
  • Intellectual Property.

Depending on qualifications and experience, it is envisaged that the post holder will initially be trained and supervised by his/her supervisor to provide the necessary guidance and quality assurance. The expectation is that the post holder should quickly be prepared to work increasingly independently, albeit in close cooperation with the supervisor and other members of the team. From time to time, he/she may also be required to liaise with and oversee the work of outside legal counsel.

Qualifications and Experience

The post holder has an advanced university degree in law demonstrating an international focus in their academic career, and at least 3 years of professional experience. His/her academic and professional background should demonstrate exposure to the international public sphere, preferably by working in another International Organisation.

Excellent English legal drafting skills are required and related thereto familiarity with both Common law as well as Civil law legal documents a strong asset. Legal areas to be covered and which the post holder ideally should have a combined experience in include International Public Law, EU Law, Commercial Law, Labour Law, (International) Administrative Law.

The post holder has strong analytical skills and the ability to identify problems and offer pragmatic options for solutions. He/She has demonstrated ability to work in a multicultural environment and to maintain effective working relations with people of different national and cultural backgrounds. The post holder is client-focused and – if required – can work to tight deadlines and handle a multitude of legal matters in parallel.

Excellent communication skills in English are mandatory. Working knowledge of French, German, Italian and/or Spanish – especially gained in a legal working environment – would be an asset. Proficiency in using Microsoft Office is essential.

How to Apply

Application Instructions

Please apply online through

Additional Information

EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organisation with a very collegial and family friendly working environment.
  • Competitive salary exempt from national taxes;
  • Comprehensive pension scheme, medical, educational and other social benefits, as well as financial support for relocation and installation, including your family;
  • Excellent child care facility on campus;
  • Certified training and continued development of your professional and personal skills;
  • Flexible and friendly working environment.
Please note that appointments on fixed term contracts can be renewed, depending on circumstances at the time of the review.

Job Categories: Legal jobs. Job Types: Full-Time.

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