Next Generation Leaders

The purpose of the Next Generation Leaders Council at the Allen Institute for Brain Science is to formally recognize the importance of fresh and innovative contributions from scientists at early stages of their careers.

By selecting emerging leaders to participate in the Next Generation Leadership Council, we foster professional development by providing opportunities and informal training on how to serve as scientific advisors. The Next Generation Leaders gain direct experience with the model of collaborative team science embraced at the Institute, and act as Institute ambassadors with academic and industry colleagues.

To make the greatest impact on neuroscience and understanding human health, the Allen Institute recognizes the need to increase the diversity of voices in our teams and our external advisory councils. Our Next Generation Leaders Council includes early career investigators and post docs who act as advisors and ambassadors for our mission of using big, team and open science to accelerate understanding of the brain. We acknowledge that Black and other minority voices are underrepresented in this group, and we are actively working to recruit Black and other underrepresented minority applicants by expanding awareness of the program to new audiences and gathering diverse applications. 

We recognize also that our current application deadline of Friday, June 12 has fallen during an extremely painful and exhausting time for our Black colleagues. We are extending the application deadline to Sunday, July 12, in hopes that the additional time will allow word of the program to spread through underrepresented communities, and allow candidates who are rightfully focused on other things to find time to complete the application.

We ask for your help by sharing this statement broadly in your communities and encouraging Black, Indigenous and People of Color colleagues to consider applying for this unique opportunity. 

Learn more & Apply

Past Next Generation Leaders Council Members

Eiman Azim, Ph.D. | Salk Institute
Jerry Chen, Ph.D. | Boston University
Jennifer Garrison, Ph.D. | Buck Institute for Research on Aging
Lisa Giocomo, Ph.D. | Stanford University
Viviana Gradinaru, Ph.D. | California Institute of Technology
Michael Halassa, M.D., Ph.D. | The Neuroscience Institute, New York University
Mark Harnett, Ph.D. | Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Alexander Huth, Ph.D. | University of Texas at Austin
Jens Kremkow, Ph.D. | Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin
Simona Lodato, Ph.D. | Humanitas University
Evan Macosko, M.D., Ph.D. | Harvard Medical School
Richard Naud, Ph.D. | University of Ottawa
Lucy Palmer, Ph.D. | The Florey Institute for Neuroscience and Mental Health, University of Melbourne, Australia
Ueli Rutishauser, Ph.D. | Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
Krishanu Saha, Ph.D. | University of Wisconsin-Madison
Neville Sanjana, Ph.D. | New York Genome Center & New York University
Benjamin Scott, Ph.D. | Boston University
Michael Yartsev, Ph.D. | Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute, University of California, Berkeley

Apply to be a Next Generation Leader

Deadline to apply extended to Sunday, July 12, 2020

Roles and program benefits during the Next Generation Leader term

  • Attend the annual Showcase Symposium and related events, to be held December 14-17, 2020 in Seattle, Washington (or virtually).
  • In the first year of serving on the Council, give a presentation on current research at the Showcase Symposium.
  • Provide feedback in an interactive format with other council members on research programs and other initiatives at the Allen Institute.
  • Attend one additional Allen Institute project advisory council meeting per year, providing an opportunity to gain experience serving on and participating in an advisory council with senior scientists from across the world.
  • Network with Allen Institute scientists, current, and former Next Generation Leaders through additional events and serve as ambassadors for the Institute and resources in the neuroscience community.

Program Details

  • All Next Generation Leaders will serve a three-year term.
  • All travel expenses and an annual honorarium will be paid.
  • Up to six Next Generation Leaders will be appointed each year, for a total of 18 members.

Qualifications and Application Instructions

  • Applicant requirements:
    • Hold an M.D. and/or Ph.D. in a relevant field
    • Currently serve in a postdoctoral position or began as an Assistant Professor on or after 6/7/2018 (or the equivalent level in industry)
    • Have a passion for understanding the complex problems facing brain research today.
  • Interested participants must complete two steps to apply:
    • Complete application form with biographical information and answers to five questions (200 words max):
      • How has the movement towards open science changed how you publish your work or share your tools?
      • In what ways have you engaged, or do you plan to engage, in a team or collaborative approach to your research?
      • How do you think "big science", or industrial-style data generation projects, and traditional academic research groups can best interact?
      • What Allen Institute resources do you find most helpful for your research?
      • Please detail your personal experiences, professional skills, and/or willingness to engage in activities that will advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in neuroscience.
    • Send remaining application materials in PDF format to
      • Letter from the applicant describing research and/or professional accomplishments and the impact the applicant hopes to have in the neuroscience field over the next 10 years (1 page max.), including a 2-3 sentence lay summary
      • Curriculum vitae
      • One or two letters of support submitted directly from the applicant’s current or former PI, department chair, dean or equivalent, addressing the applicant’s innovative work, potential and ability to bridge disciplines. Allen Institute staff will not contact references to solicit letters of support.

Apply Now