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Database Engineer

Geneva, Switzerland
Closing date
6 Jan 2023
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Job Details

Company Description

At CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, physicists and engineers are probing the fundamental structure of the universe. Using the world's largest and most complex scientific instruments, they study the basic constituents of matter - fundamental particles that are made to collide together at close to the speed of light. The process gives physicists clues about how particles interact, and provides insights into the fundamental laws of nature. Find out more on

Job Description


Are you an experienced Database Engineer willing to take an active role in the support of the databases used by the LHC experiments, LHC accelerator operations and by CERN support services? Then join our team and take part in one of the most incredible scientific experiments in the world!

You will join the Database Services section in the Database and Analytics Group which is responsible for all aspects of database service provision at CERN. It includes database related support of the control and operation for the LHC accelerator and support for the online and offline activities of the LHC experiments as well as support for Administrative Information Services.

More information on the IT Department structure is at


As a Database Engineer in the Database and Analytics (DA) Group, your main activities will consist of:

  • Administration and troubleshooting of Database systems, from development to mission-critical production systems running on Oracle, MySQL, PostgreSQL and InfluxDB database engine.
  • Database administration of other database technologies of interest for the High Energy Physics community.
  • Configuration and support of database platforms: architecture and design, evolution, scaling, migration, upgrade and patching.
  • Proactively monitoring database environments to ensure optimum performance, improve throughput, stability and security of the database platform.
  • Providing technical expertise to application development teams.
  • Development of database related software automation following group guidelines and project needs.
  • Sharing domain and technical expertise, providing technical mentorship and training to peers.


Master's degree or equivalent relevant experience in the field of Computing Science or a science discipline (e.g. Physics) with significant computing content or a related field.


The successful candidate should have demonstrated experience in following fields:

  • Operation of large scale production database environments.
  • Technical and troubleshooting skills with relational databases running on Oracle, PostgreSQL and/or MySQL.
  • Performance tuning, query optimisation, replication techniques, clustering, partitioning and security issues.
  • Database backup, restore and recovery.
  • SQL knowledge with ability to write and troubleshoot SQL code (stored procedures, functions, tables, indexes, constraints).

Additional experience in following fields would be an asset:

  • Knowledge of High Availability and Disaster Recovery solutions for Oracle, PostgreSQL and/or MySQL.
  • Database operations experience in an Agile development environment - Exposure to puppet configuration management.
  • Administration of Linux based Operating systems.
  • Experience with containerisation technology, e.g. Kubernetes.

Technical competencies:

  • Administration of databases: familiarity with large-scale and high-availability database environments.
  • Knowledge of operating systems: such as Linux, knowledge of enterprise storage management (SAN or NAS) would be an asset.
  • Knowledge of programming techniques and languages: SQL knowledge is required. UNIX shell script or Python programming would be an advantage.
  • Capturing and analysis of requirements for ICT systems: ability to collect the needs of users and to manage the different phases of a project.
  • Architecture and design of ICT systems: ability to design systems that fulfill the requirements and can be maintained efficiently.

Behavioural competencies:

  • Solving problems: identifying, defining and assessing problems, taking action to address them.
  • Achieving results: delivering high quality work on time and fulfilling expectations.
  • Working in teams: building and maintaining constructive and effective work relationships.
  • Communicating effectively: delivering presentations in a structured and clear way; adjusting style and content to the audience; responding calmly and confidently to questions; ensuring that information, procedures and decisions are appropriately documented.
  • Learning and sharing knowledge: keeping up-to-date with developments in own field of expertise and readily absorbing new information; sharing knowledge and expertise freely and willingly with others; coaching others to ensure knowledge transfer.

Language skills:

Spoken and written English: ability to understand and speak English language in professional contexts. Ability to draw-up technical specifications and/or scientific reports and to make oral presentations in English. Willingness to learn French or the ability to acquire it rapidly.

Additional Information

Eligibility and closing date:

Diversity has been an integral part of CERN's mission since its foundation and is an established value of the Organization. Employing a diverse workforce is central to our success. We welcome applications from all Member States and Associate Member States.

This vacancy will be filled as soon as possible, and applications should normally reach us no later than 22.01.2023 at midnight (CET). 

Employment Conditions

Contract type: Limited duration contract (5 years). Subject to certain conditions, holders of limited-duration contracts may apply for an indefinite position.

These functions require:

  • Participation in a regular stand-by duty, including nights, Sundays and official holidays.
  • Work during nights, Sundays and official holidays, when required by the needs of the Organization.
  • Stand-by duty, when required by the needs of the Organization.

Job grade: 6-7

Job reference: IT-DA-DB-2022-167-LD

Benchmark Job Title: Computing Engineer


Imagine taking part in the largest scientific experiment in the world. CERN needs more than physicists and engineers – if you’re a student, a graduate, just starting your career or an experienced professional, Whatever your field of expertise, CERN could be your next opportunity: take part!

CERN is a truly unique organisation. A genuine collaboration between countries, universities and scientists, driven not by profit margins, but by a commitment to create and share knowledge.

People here are part of immense scientific discoveries, answering some of life’s most complex questions and pushing the boundaries of understanding. Experts from every field come here to share in this ambition and the nature of this collaborative, international community creates a genuine atmosphere of trust. People are free to work creatively and to trust in, and rely on, their colleagues across the organisation.

History’s being made here – and the excitement is tangible, inspiring, overwhelming at times. It is the only place in the world that you can do this work in this way.

CERN. Take part.

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