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We are always looking for talented and motivated PhD students and postdoctoral researchers who are passionate about (automated) machine learning & meta-learning, recommender systems, information retrieval, natural language processing, or some of our other research interests (if you are a Bachelor or Master student, please look at our students’ corner).
We offer a great working atmosphere at Ireland’s premier university, and close supervision to ensure that you complete your PhD on time and at the highest standards; yet, we leave you enough freedom to develop your creativity and pursue your own ideas. We will support you in publishing in high-impact venues throughout your PhD/PostDoc, and you will benefit from our broad network and experience. Beside conducting your PhD/PostDoc research, you may be able to join exciting projects either in the ADAPT Centre, our own business start-up or our open-source projects. We are also highly supportive when it comes to research visits abroad e.g. at our partner institutes in Tokyo (The National Institute of Informatics) and Germany (University of Wuppertal).
We do not have any particular vacancies for postdoctoral researchers at the moment. However, if you are interested in applying for a postdoctoral scholarship under our supervision, have a look at the EU/SFI EDGE fellowship, the ELITE-S fellowship, the Government of Ireland Postdoctoral Fellowship (GoIPD), the SFI/EI Technology Innovation Development Award (TIDA), or the EU Marie Curie Individual Fellowships. If you are from outside of Ireland, check with your local funding agencies, whether they offer some postdoctoral fellowships for working abroad. If you are from Germany, DAAD PRIME or DAAD Kurzstipendien may be an option to receive funding to work with us in Dublin.
Please note that we cannot help you with finding a suitable topic for your postdoctoral project. As a (potential) postdoc we expect you to have your own ideas. However, once you have a project idea, we will gladly support you in shaping the idea and applying for a scholarship. Even if there is no open call that you could apply to, feel free to send us your CV and letter of motivation, and we may come back to you once we have positions available.
You can join us as a full-time PhD student, part-time PhD student (e.g. while working in industry), or as a visiting PhD student.
A full-time PhD in Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin takes 4 years. In these four years, you will mostly be working on your PhD topic. In addition, you need to complete 2 modules worth a total of 10-20 ECTS points at the School of Computer Science and Statistics.
Currently, we do offer projects in two CRTs, please read here for more details. Also, if you are interested in applying for e.g. TCD’s PG Ussher Fellowships, GoIPG, or
IRC’s Employment-Based Postgraduate Programme, feel free to contact us. Chinese citizens may also look at the China Scholarship Council (CSC) – Trinity College Dublin Joint Scholarship Programme. Even if there is no open call that you could apply to, feel free to send us your CV and letter of motivation, and we may come back to you once we have positions available.
If you are in the lucky situation that money doesn’t matter to you, then you may also consider a self-funded PhD. Fees are around €6,500 pa for EU students, and €13,000 for non-EU students.
Part-Time / Industry
If you are working full-time in the industry and are interested in doing a part-time PhD, we would also love to hear from you. A part-time PhD takes around 6 years. In these six years, you will mostly be working on your PhD topic. In addition, you need to complete 2 modules worth 10-20 ECTS points at the School of Computer Science and Statistics. Tuition fees are around €5,5,000 pa for EU students, and €11,000 pa for non-EU students.
Please note that if you want to do a part-time PhD, then:
- You need a PhD topic that is approved by your employer and ideally relates to your work. Keep in mind that your PhD will take about six years. A project that is relevant only short-term to your employer is hence not suitable. Your project must relate to the long-term strategic interest of the company (and you should be quite sure that these interests won’t change in the next few years).
- Your employer must allow you to work 1 day per week on your PhD only, potentially from home or at TCD (in other words, you work 4 days for your employer instead of 5).
- You need to be able to pay the tuition fees. You may simply pay the fees yourself, your employer may pay the fees, or your employer may apply for some joint funding programme for PhD students.
Visiting PhD Students
Contact us, if you would like to work with us for a few months in Dublin. We are always open to self-funded visitors. If you are a PhD student from Germany, the DAAD FIT Weltweit program may be interesting for you. It allows PhD students from Germany to pursue a research project for some months at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. Chinese postgraduate students may also visit us for 6-24 months via the China Scholarship Council (CSC) – Trinity College Dublin Joint Scholarship Programme.
General Advice on Doing a PhD
A good PhD Topic
Something like “I want to use machine learning to improve abc” is not a suitable PhD topic. Instead, you must a) have identified a specific problem, and b) have a plausible idea of how you could solve this problem (again, just throwing dozens of machine learning algorithms to a problem and see what algorithm solves the problem best, is not a sufficient PhD contribution). It is important, that your proposed solution is novel, and convincing (ideally other persons familiar with the problem would say “Oh yes, of course, why haven’t I thought of that?).
Doing a PhD is not about obtaining broad knowledge in a field such as machine learning or natural language processing. A PhD is about deepening your existing knowledge and, most importantly, creating new knowledge (“new knowledge” in terms of creating a novel algorithm, designing a new method or metric, …). This means, to start a PhD, you should have already good knowledge in the broader field (e.g. machine learning) and ideally some knowledge in the special field of your PhD (e.g. recurrent neural networks). If that is not the case, you might be better off to do first some online courses e.g. in machine learning; or do a Bachelor / Master (by research) in that field.
Writing research papers is not easy and takes lots of practice. We will gladly support you in this learning process. However, if you already have published a paper (e.g. your dissertation), then this is a good indicator that you will enjoy doing your PhD.
Positions at the NII in Tokyo, Japan
We work closely with the National Institute of Informatics (NII) in Tokyo, Japan. If you are interested in working at the NII, have a look at the programmes of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. They offer scholarships for foreigners at all career levels, including senior researchers, to conduct research visits in Japan for up to two years. In addition, SFI and IRC may offer scholarships for research visits abroad. If you are interested in applying for a scholarship, we would be glad to support you in establishing contact with the NII. Permanent positions at the NII are advertised on NII’s website. If you are a (PhD) student at TCD, you may work at the NII for up to six months if you apply for the Earrach Sakura Award.
If you would like to do your PhD with us, we would love to hear from you. Please send an email to Joeran Beel (firstname.lastname@example.org) with a meaningful email subject and the following information.
- Type of PhD (Full-Time; Part-Time; Visiting)
- Earliest/Prefered/Latest possible start date:
- If visiting student: Min/Max/Pref. Duration of the visit
- Your expertise/experience in the proposed field of PhD
- How do you wish to fund your PhD?
- If Part-Time Industry PhD: Does your employer support your PhD? How?
- If you have your own research topic (please ensure to read our advice above on doing a PhD)
- Research Problem (1-2 paragraphs)
- Proposed Solution (1-2 paragraphs)
- If you do not have your own research topic
- What topic(s) are of interest to you? Why?
- What is your existing experience with these topics?
- Have you already published some research papers? If yes, please provide details or e.g. link to Google Scholar.
- Any other publicly available projects, e.g. on GitHub?
- Current place of residence:
- Why do you want to work in our group?