In 2020, Paul Bürkner was the first Independent Junior Research Group Leader to start in the Cluster of Excellence EXC 2075 “Data-Integrated Simulation Science” (SimTech). Three years and a research group of 5 doctoral researchers later, he is out and about to leave SimTech to become a Full Professor for Computational Statistics at the Department of Statistics of TU Dortmund University.
“Being able to conduct research in SimTech and at the University of Stuttgart with so much freedom and in such a great environment, really helped to pave the way to my upcoming adventures of being a Full Professor in Dortmund”, underlines Paul Bürkner.
Born in Marburg, Paul Bürkner started studying psychology in Münster in 2010. When this was not enough anymore, he also began studying mathematics at FernUni Hagen. He completed both as a Master of Science and began his doctorate in statistical psychology, which he successfully completed in 2017 under Professor Holling. After a short PosDoc station in Münster, he spent the last year and a half in Finland. As a PostDoc at the Aalto University in Helsinki, he worked under Prof. Vehtari in the field of computer science on prohabilistic machine learning. In 2020, he joined SimTech as an Independent Research Group Leader for Bayesian Statistics and was very successful in acquiring DFG-funded projects. He was also one of the organizers of the 1st International Summer School in SimTech.
Paul Bürkner describes himself as a a statistician with a focus on probabilistic (Bayesian) methods. Having originally studied psychology and mathematics, his core research is nowadays located somewhere between statistics and machine learning, with applications in almost all quantitative sciences.
“The appointment by TU Dortmund University is not the first appointment Paul Bürkner has received during his time in SimTech. We are very proud of him and his accomplishments. We are really happy for what he has achieved in such a short amount of time. He very much enriched SimTech and the cluster’s research and we know that the TU Dortmund University will benefit from him a lot. SimTech truly wishes him all the best for his personal and professional future in Dortmund. Of course, this also applies to his doctoral researchers since some of whom will accompany him to Dortmund”, states Jenny Kopsch-Xhema, SimTech CEO, on behalf of the SimTech Board of Directors.
The Cluster of Excellence EXC 2075 has established in total 7 independent junior research groups to attract internationally outstanding postdoctoral students. SimTech’s goal is to support early career researchers optimally in the decision-making process and in planning and implementing subsequent career steps. The SC SimTech is hosting the junior research groups and gives them maximum possible freedom due to its structure: the junior research group leaders supervise their own group and have the promotion right. Additionally, they are guaranteed full access to core facilities and central infrastructures.