Scientific Director of Linguistic Research Infrastructure

University of Zurich


Linguistic Research Infrastructure (LiRI)

Scientific Director
40-60 %

The Linguistic Research Infrastructure (LiRI) is a technology platform established at the University of Zurich in 2020 to support and promote cutting-edge research in linguistics and related fields. LiRI offers laboratory facilities for experimental research, equipment for data acquisition, and services in the fields of statistics, machine learning and language technology. As well as support for data processing, analysis and eventual archiving of research data. We are looking for a Scientific Director to join the LiRI Directorate. The position is initially limited to one year, with the possibility to renew permanently.

Your responsibilities

As Scientific Director, you will be primarily responsible for guiding LiRI's commitment to meeting the needs of the scientific community which it serves, in accordance with the visions of the LiRI Steering Committee and the UZH Technology Commission. You will also be responsible for increasing LiRI's visibility within UZH and both nationally and internationally.

With your strategic approach, you will manage technical processes, optimize resource allocation, and foster an open and highly collaborative environment that encourages innovation.

You will lead service area and project coordinators, e.g. data scientists, NLP and Human Language Technology specialists and software developers, organized in dynamic teams to deliver services to our users. You will contribute to LiRI's ongoing development, including the expansion of research infrastructure and services to meet the changing needs of the linguistic research community, both at UZH and throughout Switzerland.

In addition, you will
  • coordinate the project selection in line with LiRI's vision,
  • actively participate in leadership meetings and town halls,
  • raise external funding for method development within LiRI,
  • play a central role in the recruitment of key staff, coordinate the Scientific Advisory Board and present to stakeholders and higher-level UZH units,
  • coordinate LiRI's participation in educational programs within the Zurich Center for Linguistics and Faculty.
You work closely with the Managing Director of LiRI to optimize the use of available resources and achieve the goals set. The collaboration extends to strategic resource planning and budget coordination, with a focus on the effective management of complex processes.

Your profile

You will have a PhD and postdoctoral experience in a field relevant to Linguistics, Speech, Hearing, Language Science or Human Language Technology, proven professional experience in project management methods and leadership, ideally in the successful management of a research or infrastructure unit of international standing.

Further components of your profile:
  • Collaborative mindset and exceptional stakeholder management skills.
  • Good business acumen, understanding the intersection of science and business in the context of a research institute.
  • Experience in leading diverse teams with an inclusive and growth mindset.
  • Proven track record of influencing senior leadership teams to drive progress and innovation.
  • Ability to lead a wide range of staff with diverse backgrounds, from software development over traditional linguistic analysis to state-of-the-art speech & neurosciences.
Language requirements
Fluent in both English and one of the Swiss national languages, or willingness to learn German as a working language within the first year of employment.

What we offer

We offer you a central and responsible position in an exciting and dynamically developing research environment, with plenty of creative freedom, supported by a highly motivated, interdisciplinary and open-minded team providing services to researchers.
We will support you in your personal development, e.g. through good training opportunities (internal and external).
Your employment relationship will be under public law.

Place of work

Andreasstrasse 15, Z├╝rich, Switzerland

Start of employment

This position is available from May 2024 onwards. Applications will be considered until the position is filled.

In your application, please refer to


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