Show your interest in becoming a Patent Examiner in Digital, Electronics & Physics (21170)


In anticipation of forthcoming opportunities and having a look at the current market situation, we are welcoming the applications of all talents interested in pursuing a more stable career as a patent examiner.

With a strong growth in the patent applications related to digital technologies, electronics & physics, our patent examiners work on patent applications in a wide range of fields from hardware electronics and solid state physics to the latest developments in video coding, cybersecurity, 5G and artificial intelligence.


Curious about future innovation? If so, we would love to hear from you.

Imagine exploring every day, before almost anyone else, breakthrough developments. As a patent examiner, you have the chance to support the inventors who will shape our world, and the lives of millions of people, for years to come.


Supporting innovation, competitiveness, sustainability and economic growth: that's our mission at the European Patent Office (EPO)

As the patent office for Europe, we are proud to deliver high-quality, efficient services that promote a safer, smarter and more sustainable world. A world in which we are committed to helping achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and the highest environmental, social and governance standards. Moreover, as an equal opportunities employer, the EPO is shaped by the diversity of our people’s personalities, knowledge and cultures. Interested in joining us?


What's in it for you

  • Gain unique insights into the latest inventions
  • Work with inspiring multilingual people from a variety of cultures
  • Various career development opportunities to help you realise your full potential
  • Contribute to multiple projects that help shape the future of the EPO

Who we’re looking for

We are currently seeking scientists and engineers who share our passion for innovation and wish to work at the cutting edge of technology, analysing the latest inventions, in particular in the technical areas of: 


  • Mobile Radio Communication- MIMO - 5G - 6G - beamforming - Physical layer
  • Optical communication: Optical fiber transmission, wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) systems, wireless optical communication and quantum communication
  • GNSS and positioning by electromagnetic and acoustic waves
  • Radar, high frequency and Lidar technology
  • Wireless networks (4G, 5G and wireless LAN) / Switching, routing and flow control in digital networks
  • Digital video coding and compression (MPEG) & video processing
  • Digital cameras, image sensors and camera control
  • Railway signalling, control and guidance systems 
  • Analogue and digital circuit design, semiconductor memories including structures, operation, and testing  
  • Electric switches , circuit breakers and their components
  • Housings, cooling, shielding of electronics; Systems/apparatuses for mounting devices on circuit boards   
  • Record carries and readers (specialists for RFID/NFC, for chip cards or for bar codes, or more generally of electronic data carriers and readers, with general knowledge of and ability to understand electronic circuits)
  • Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning and Quantum Computing 
  • Speech & Audio Signal Processing
  • Image Processing, Computer Vision, Pattern Recognition    
  • Mass spectrometry and photoelectric discharge tubes
  • Nuclear chemical processes (fuel reprocessing, radioactive waste disposal)
  • Semiconductor devices and also the packaging and bonding technologies related to such       
  • Sample separation, in particular Chromatography (like column chromatography or thin layer chromatography) and Electrophoresis - focus on all aspects of the devices and data analysis of the measured data (background in physics in a wide range (mechanics, fluid transport, materials, optics), ideally with basic knowledge of chemistry of materials in general and of biological materials in particular)
  • Magnetic Applications: Magnets (Permanent Magnets and Electromagnets), Transformers, Coils, Inductors and Magnetic Materials / Constructional Aspects and related Electric Circuits    
  • Microphones, Loudspeakers, headphones, processing of signals thereof
  • Semiconductor processing, memory technologies and/or OLED manufacturing (background as chemist, physicist or engineer)
  • Semiconductor fabrication processes and cooling systems
  • Chemistry of lithography using photosensitive materials
  • Solid State Physics - ideally some experience/knowledge of semiconductor technology
  • Semiconductor devices and manufacturing technology
  • Semiconductors: Organic LEDs, Image devices and Packaging
  • Display systems and drivers
  • Measurements, in particular material characterisation, and flow properties and in sampling (for further analysis) (ideally, background with knowledge and expertise in automatic analysis and flow cytometry)
  • IT or Cybersecurity, cryptography
  • Computer Aided Design
  • Memory management, storage interfaces
  • Or a background relevant to Medical Informatics



What you will do as a patent examiner

  • Carry out end-to-end examination of patent applications, i.e. the texts and drawings that describe an invention for which an individual or a company seeks legal protection
  • Find and use the most relevant documentation to assess the patentability of the invention
  • Support the entire innovation ecosystem by deciding whether a patent is to be granted
  • Ensure the uniform and effective application of the European Patent Convention and other legal texts.

What we expect from you: Scientific expertise, analytical thinking, language skills
You can apply your dazzling powers of analysis to the wealth of highly technical information that you expertly retrieve from the relevant databases and other sources. When making informed decisions with confidence and clarity, you have the capacity to consider all the legal requirements and the parties' arguments. You convey the outcome in clear and well‑reasoned communications and feel comfortable interacting with colleagues and applicants to process patent applications efficiently. You’re always keen to learn, hungry for knowledge of the latest developments in your field and eager to acquire new skills. You’re happy to work remotely but also appreciate joining your colleagues in the office to work with your team in person, network and socialise. Sound like you?

What are our minimum requirements?

  • Master's degree (or equivalent) covering one or more technical fields mentioned above
  • Excellent knowledge (at least C1) of one official language (English, French or German) and the ability to understand the other two; alternatively, excellent knowledge (at least C1) of English (in such cases, the willingness to learn the missing languages and to reach level B2 within a set time frame would be required)
  • Work experience in industry would be an advantage.
  • Citizenship of one of the member states of the European Patent Organisation.


An above-market social package? That's what we offer at the EPO

  • A competitive salary
  • Family-friendly benefits
  • Generous flexibility options allowing you to work from anywhere in the country of employment (min. onsite attendance applies) and a set number of days from any EPC member country
  • Relocation benefits and various allowances (e.g. household, dependants, childcare, education, expatriation, installation, rent allowance)
  • Contributory medical insurance and pension schemes
  • 30 days of leave per year
  • Free gym access
  • Social activities and clubs
    Full list of benefits


Start making a difference. Simply click Apply.

More information on how we recruit can be found on our EPO jobs and careers site.


Time frame and procedure
If you think you might be interested in working for us in the future, please fill out our application form so that we can consider your profile for our next recruitment round (foreseen for spring '23).

We will then contact you with more information if your application is preselected for the next round.




Key information

Job group: 4

Grade: G7 to G10 (net basic) monthly salary* for this vacancy: EUR 5900 to 8300, depending on experience and location)

Duration of contract: Five years, with the possibility of extension

Career path: Technical 

Location: Hybrid based in Germany (Munich) or The Netherlands (The Hague)

Application deadline: 31.01.2023


* after deduction of EPO-internal tax and before deduction of staff contributions to the social security and pension schemes.



We welcome all applications for vacant positions. We consider each on its professional merits – regardless of your nationality, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, parental responsibilities, age, religion or belief.



> Work as a patent examiner

Why join us?
✓ See the latest inventions and enable innovation
✓ Work with inspiring people from a variety of cultures
✓ Develop yourself and take on an intellectual challenge

What's in it for you?
✓ A competitive salary
✓ Family-friendly benefits
✓ A good work-life balance
✓ Relocation benefits and various allowances
✓ Contributory medical insurance and pension schemes
✓ 30 days' leave per year

Who we are
We are the patent office for Europe. We are proud to deliver high-quality patents and efficient services that foster innovation, competitiveness and economic growth.

Our vision
We're currently undergoing a change inspired by a common vision: our Strategic Plan 2023. Join us on this exciting journey to a more digital, collaborative and sustainable organisation.

Our work environment
We believe that diversity is fundamental to our success. Our inclusive work environment respects, values and celebrates our individual differences. We want you to be yourself at work.

How we recruit
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