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About us Faculty of Science and Engineering Our Research Postdoc Council

Council members

Members of the Council

Dr Elisa Palacino González
Dr Elisa Palacino González

Hi! I am Elisa Palacino González, a Marie-Curie Research Fellow working in the Theory of Condensed Matter group at the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials. I came to Groningen in 2021 after a first postdoc in the Max-Born Institute of Nonlinear Optics in Berlin. Previously I graduated with a PhD from the Technical University of Munich and the Max-Planck Institute for Advanced Photon Science. Originally I am Spanish, where I studied my Bachelor and Masters degree in Chemistry. My research lies in the field of molecular photophysics and theoretical chemistry. I work on the development of methods to understand the mechanisms governing ultrafast processes occurring in molecules after excitation with very short light pulses. The main goal of my current project at RUG is to develop methods to understand and enhance the energy conversion in organic solar cells. When I am not doing science I like to perform stand-up comedy and outreaching activities on stage. I joined the Postdoc Council to contribute with my ideas to activities for connecting the postdoc network of the FSE in the University of Groningen.

Dr. Bharat Kumar Gehlot
Dr. Bharat Kumar Gehlot

My name is Bharat Kumar Gehlot, and I am a postdoctoral researcher at the Kapteyn Astronomical Institute. My research focuses on looking back in the past when the Universe was in its infancy and unveiling the (astro)physical processes that occurred during those early stages that led the Universe to evolve into the state we observe today. I am originally from India, where I completed my Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Science, majoring in Physics. I completed my PhD from Kapteyn Institute (RUG) in 2019 and moved to the United States for my first postdoc at Arizona State University. Around 2.5 years later, I moved back to Groningen because I fell in love with this country during my first time here. As a postdoc for about three years now, I realized that postdocs are the least represented group in academia and at the most critical time point of their research career. I joined the postdoc council to bring a perspective of working in three continents and hopefully make meaningful contributions to the council and the postdoc community.

Dr. Giorgio Orlando
Dr. Giorgio Orlando

My name is Giorgio Orlando. I studied Physics at the University of Padova (Italy). I also completed my PhD in Physics at the University of Padova, specializing in theoretical cosmology. In October 2020 I joined the University of Groningen as a postdoctoral researcher in the cosmology group of Dr. P. Daniel Meerburg. My research focuses on scales that are not directly accessible by our experience. My aim is to use the cosmological observables to test our knowledge of the fundamental laws of physics. I also have a variety of interests beyond research, as for the education sector. I joined the Postdoc council to bring my complementary profile to the group.

Dr. May Lee
Dr. May Lee

My name is May Lee and I am a postdoc fellow at the Institute for Science Education and Communication. I’m originally from the US and came here to Groningen because I saw this position posted on twitter and felt it described the kind of work I wanted to do as a learning scientist. I currently teach an introductory physics course to primarily first-year undergraduate students that partly serves as the context of my research: understanding how TAs' perspectives on teaching and learning relate to their instructional practices during tutorials. Findings from this work can contribute towards the design of productive learning environments in future courses within the Faculty of Science and Engineering. I joined the Postdoc Council because I wanted to learn more about what it means to be a postdoc, meet postdocs from other institutes, and contribute to the postdoc community at large.

Dr. Stephen Jones
Dr. Stephen Jones

My name is Stephen Jones and I’m a postdoc in the Bernoulli Institute. My research looks at the relationship between formal theories of grammar and computational models of language processing in the brain. I’m originally from the United Kingdom and have been in Groningen since 2019, shortly after I completed my DPhil in Linguistics. I’m a late-in-life Early Career Researcher: I did my bachelor’s degree in Human Sciences in the 1980s and worked as a manager in the English health service for over 20 years, before going back to university to study language. I joined the Postdoc Council to try and help all postdocs to have the best experience of their time here and, selfishly, to meet other people and have some fun.

Dr. Joana Sabino Pinto
Dr. Joana Sabino Pinto

I’m Joana Sabino Pinto, I’m Portuguese, and I am currently a postdoc Marie Curie fellow in the EGDB (Evolutionary Genetics, Development & Behaviour) group at GELIFES (Groningen Institute for Evolutionary Life Sciences). My research focuses on the link between sexual selection and disease resistance with amphibians as model organisms. I joined the Postdoc Council as a way to find more information about being a postdoc at RUG and since then have been motivated to share that information with other postdocs so they have a better acclimatization to our university (and have to jump through less hoops) than I did.

Dr. Meagan Beatty
Dr. Meagan Beatty

My name is Meagan Beatty and I am from the West Coast of Canada. My PhD topic focused on studying and developing supramolecular sensors that detect illicit drugs in saliva and biological metabolites in enzymatic reactions. Currently, I am a Marie Curie Fellow in the Stratingh Institute, specifically in the Centre for Systems Chemistry. I’m interested in re-creating aspects of life in a flask by allowing a mixture of simple building blocks to spontaneously form enzyme-like molecules with catalytic functionality. I joined the council in January 2021 to engage with and add to the post-doc community.

PostDoc Ambassadors

Two junior permanent staff members are assisting us with advice:

Dr. Anna Salvati
Dr. Sonja Billerbeck

My name is Sonja Billerbeck and I am an Assistant Professor for molecular microbiology at the Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute (GBB).

I hold a Master in Microbiology from the University of Tübingen (GER), a PhD in Bioengineering from ETH Zürich (CH) and I did postdoctoral research in yeast Synthetic Biology at Columbia University in New York City (USA).

In Groningen my group develops a research program that uses Synthetic Biology, Protein Engineering and Environmental Microbiology to access, understand and engineer the functional diversity of nature’s yeast-based mycobiome for applications in human health, industrial biotechnology and to answer fundamental questions on yeast (pathogen) biology. Besides research, I am dedicated to education and outreach in the field of microbial Synthetic Biology. I have been leading iGEM teams at various institutions for over ten years and I co-lead the iGEM engineering committee. Further, I am the Chair of the Microbial Biotechnology section of the KNVM (Royal Dutch Association for Microbiology) and the NBV (Dutch Biotechnology Association).

As postdoc ambassador, I (try to) mentor the postdoctoral community at the RuG on their research and career strategies and vice-versa advice the university in their policies to support these goals.

Dr. Marcos Guimarães
Dr. Marcos Guimarães

I’m Marcos Guimarães, assistant professor at the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials, and postdoc ambassador for the PD Council. I was a postdoc myself not so long ago. From 2014 until 2017, I was a postdoc fellow at Cornell University, USA, and after that, between 2017 and 2019, a postdoc at TU Eindhoven, Netherlands. Since then, I started here at the University of Groningen, where I study electronics and magnetism in nanostructured materials using light. As a postdoc ambassador, my role is to assist and advise the council as a (slightly) more experienced academic.

RUG Project Leader

Mrs. Yvonne Folkers
Mrs. Yvonne Folkers

Coordination and assistance to the team by HR Advice:
Mrs. Yvonne Folkers

Former Members

  • Saeed Ahmed
  • Sandeep Kumar Padamati
  • Xiangcheng Chen
  • Georgian Nedelcu
  • Lyes Khacef
  • Maciej Grajewski
  • Michele Crotti
  • Kateryna Frantseva
  • Omer Markovitch
  • Sandeep Kumar Padamati
  • Prof. Dr. Diederik Roest
  • Anne Lexmond (now Scientific Coordinator at UMCG)
  • Viktoriia Starokozhko (now Clinical expert at Medicines Evaluation Board)
  • Miriam Boersema (now Project manager at UMCG Research BV and Grant Support Hub)
  • Valentina Arkhipova (now PostDoc at UMCG)
  • Nicola Strisciuglio
  • Emma Wams (now Project leader at PRA Health Sciences)
  • Primo┼ż Pirih
  • Natalia Vtyurina (now Associate Consultant at ProPharma Group)
  • Pim Frederix
  • Valentina Francia
  • Davide Massari
  • Haleh Abdizadeh
  • Noémi Deak
  • Aditya Iyer
  • Liliia Kulish
Last modified:04 March 2023 12.16 p.m.