Join Our Team

 Do you want to join the TAPDANCE research team at Maynooth University?

Required Background

Firstly, we are fairly flexible on the required background. Essentially it is important to be excited about the topic, to have the ability to focus hard and to see an exciting project through, to want to have fun with it, and of course a desire to use your imagination!

Secondly, since we are an interdisciplinary group we are open to having students and postdocs of a variety of backgrounds.

Our research has theoretical components such as defining models of computation and proving theorems, as well as experimental science components such as making DNA nanostructures that compute in the wet-lab.

It is not often the case that students have been exposed to a lot of both (say) computer science theory and experimental science. But usually, a background in at least one of them is sufficient to get going and to provide a base to learn the other.

If you know and like theory, and are excited and focused enough to implement your ideas in the wet-lab then you can easily learn the wet-lab techniques. If you already have some experimental background and wet-lab skills, and have a good appreciation for clear, reasoned and even mathematical thinking, then that combination can work really well too.

Generally, an interest and willingness to learn about new things (computer science, physics, chemistry, even biology) is quite important.



Computer Science Theory 

Any area within Computer Science.


Experimental Science

Any discipline of experimental science from Physics to Engineering to Molecular Biology to Chemistry or beyond.


A Passion for Learning

We are inter-disciplinary and we value equality, diversity and inclusion.

Available Positions

Positions available for internships/summer projects, typically they come with funding. For summer undergrad projects, MU students can apply through the Maynooth SPUR programme. We also have PhD positions, and from time to time have postdoc, senior postdoc, research fellow and technician positions. 

How to Apply

If you are interested in joining TAPDANCE at Maynooth University send an email to me, Damien Woods, with a CV, detailing why. The email should focus on scientific matters and address issues like: Why do you think you’d like to work with us? How does my research work interest you? Feel free to give your thoughts on my publications or related publications by others. What work have you done that might interest me, or that led to you considering us as a new home? Is there something exciting you’ve done or would like to do that we should discuss? Please keep in mind that if your email lacks specifics, or shows confusion about that it is we work on, then it will probably be ignored. I want to see how you think!

What We Do

We work on (A) theory and (B) practice of computing with molecules. (A) Theory: This starts by reading the literature and learning about existing models of computation inspired by molecules and their interactions. We spend a lot of time and energy asking new questions, but mostly trying to answer questions (by proving theorems) in order to understand the capabilities of such models. (B) Practice: We build DNA computers in the wet-lab. This involves designing systems to build while making use of our theoretical understanding from (A), using computer code to help design DNA sequences, and then doing an experiment where we get to see if our design worked! 

Contact Us

Why do you think you’d like to work with us?

3 + 11 =

Maynooth University

Hamilton Institute
Co. Kildare


Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or European Innovation Council and SMEs Executive Agency (EISMEA). Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

Funded by the EU