Bill Schafer studied Biology at Harvard University, then moved to UC Berkeley for graduate studies in Biochemistry. His PhD thesis in the lab of Jasper Rine described the role of protein prenylation in the trafficking and function of yeast mating factors and Ras proteins. In 1992, he began postdoctoral research in the lab of Cynthia Kenyon at UCSF, investigating the effects of monoamines on C. elegans behavior. In 1995, he established his own group as a faculty member in the Division of Biology at UCSD. Following a sabbatical to the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in 2004-2005, he moved his group to Cambridge in 2006. He is currently Programme Leader in Cell Biology at the LMB, as well as a visiting scientist at Janelia Farm. His research on C. elegans neuroscience has focused on the molecules of somatosensation, the processing of sensory information by neuronal microcircuits, and the quantitative analysis of behavioral phenotypes.