Research assistant (f/m/div) for research-based software engineering in the area of text mining with machine learning methods

For our Kiel or Hamburg branch.

The ZBW – Leibniz Information Centre for Economics is the world’s largest infor-mation centre for economic literature. The institution holds more than 4 million volumes and enables access to millions of online documents in economics. ZBW is a rese¬arch-based academic library and a member of the Leibniz Association. In addition, ZBW is scientifically affiliated to the Christian Albrechts University of Kiel and conducts its own application-oriented research in computer science and information science, with a focus on Open Science.

With its expertise both in economics and in information science, the unit “Collection Development & Metadata” provides an essential base for the products and services offered to the patrons of ZBW. The unit handles the creation, curation, and standardization of metadata, resource management and information services, thus enabling and promoting better access to relevant information in economics and information processing services that are tailored specifically to the needs of the patrons of ZBW.

In order to optimize the supply of information continuously and in accordance with the demands of our patrons, the resources provided via ZBW are processed with respect to their contents and annotated with structured and standardized metadata so that those resources can be reliably found in the context of domain-specific retrieval and aggregation processes. These metadata can then be used for further information processing applications as well.

Due to the proliferation of digital publications, it has become impossible to create comprehensive metadata for all publications intellectually. Therefore, at ZBW we reuse and adapt research results on Artificial Intelligence with respect to our specific context: We extract semantic features from resources using machine learning methods in order to obtain high-quality metadata (semi )automatically and thus to be able to improve the relevance of search results in our portal EconBiz even further.

At our unit “Academic Services”, we are looking for a

scientific assistant (fem/male/div)for research-based software engineering in the area of text mining with machine learning methods

The position is located in Kiel or Hamburg (depending on the applicant’s preferences), Germany, and will start as soon as possible. This is a full-time position (currently 38.7 hours per week), part-time work is possible to a certain extent. We offer a contract that is initially fixed to a period of 4 years in accordance with § 2 Wissenschaftszeitvertragsgesetz (WissZeitVG), with remuneration based on the public sector pay scale at grade EG 13 TV-L.

Your tasks…

  • to conceptualize, develop and apply machine learning methods in the area of text mining with a focus on semantic metadata extraction
  • to implement and adapt software solutions for the enrichment of information resources in the domain of economics with semantic metadata extracted from texts, preferably in Python
  • to integrate those software solutions into the productive workflows for semantic annotation of resources at ZBW
  • to document and version your own software solutions in order to ensure their reusability (within the limits of available software licenses), preferably in Git-based environments
  • to support ZBW in networking with other institutions on the international and the national level in the area of automated metadata extraction / of machine learning, e.g. via publishing articles and giving talks at corresponding scientific conferences

Your profile…

… essential qualifications / skills:

  • Master or diploma in computer science, business informatics, computational linguistics, information science, or in a related technical field
  • established methodological knowledge and practical experience in the implementation of methods of natural language processing and machine learning – preferably also of neural networks / deep learning – for the area of text mining / information retrieval
  • experience in implementing using a higher programming language and corresponding developing environments and libraries, as well as source code management
  • good command of written and spoken English
  • strong communication skills, intercultural competence, and the ability to cooperate in an interdisciplinary context

… desirable:


  • with the administration of backend systems
  • with the development of frontend applications, e.g. web applications or visual user interfaces
  • with the implementation of state of the art software architectures, e.g. microservice architectures
  • with library-specific applications, data formats, and information systems.
  • good command of written and spoken German is a plus.

We expect you to be able to go on business trips and day trips to the respective other location of ZBW.

We offer…

  • a challenging task in a dynamic environment where team work, transparency, innovation, and continuous learning are essential
  • the possibility of obtaining a PhD degree in computer science
  • the public sector pension plan (VBL)
  • a work place at the Fjord of Kiel or in the centre of Hamburg.
  • Part-time work is possible.
  • Equal opportunity and family-friendly policies.

Are you interested in joining the team?

Apply online now (ID-Nr. A1-04). For further information please contact Dr. Anna Kasprzik (, Tel. 0049-40-42834-425).

Please submit your application with the relevant documents online by February 8th, 2019. Please do not submit a photo with your application.

We look forward to meeting you!

Apply online

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