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 or some of our other research interests

To learn about the latest job offers, follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our blog. The latest job offers from our blog are these:

Postdoctoral Researcher

Even if we do not have any open positions (see above), we would still be happy to hear from you. Especially, if you have an exciting research idea and are interested in applying for funding yourself. Potential sources for funding include

  • The German Academic Exchange Service DAAD, if you are from abroad
  • The German Science Foundation DFG

If you are German and interested to work at Trinity College Dublin or the National Institute of Informatics in Tokyo, the DAAD IFI program may be interesting for you. Let us know if you are interested, we would be glad to support you in applying and establishing contact.

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 research vision.

PhD Positions


Even if we do not have open PhD positions (see above), we would be glad to hear from if you are interested in applying e.f. for a scholarship.

— More details coming soon —

Part-Time / Industry

The University of Siegen is perfectly suited for a part-time PhD, i.e. doing the PhD research besides your normal (full-time) job. As one of the very few universities in Germany, the University of Siegen offers a cumulative dissertation. This means, instead of writing a few-hundred-pages-long monograph, you need to publish 4 major research articles as first author (plus an introduction and summary). Those 4 articles should loosely relate to each other, but not as much as if you were writing a monograph.

A cumulative dissertation gives you much more flexibility because you do not have to work on one specific topic over multiple years. Instead, you can have some ‘shift’ in your topic(s). Also, writing up a monograph usually takes months of boring and frustrating work towards the end of your PhD time. When doing a PhD you should publish research articles anyway. Hence, there is almost no overhead with a cumulative dissertation, except writing an introduction and a summary, which should not take more than a few days.

As a side note, there is no tuition fee at the University of Siegen, and you do not need to attend any classes. Only if you want to be officially enrolled as a PhD student, there is a fee of 250 Euros or so per semester but this is voluntary. In addition, you can do the entire Ph.D. remotely. However, it would be nice if in the beginning, the middle, and towards the end of your PhD, you would spend a few days in person here in Siegen.

In summary, all you need for a PhD, is to publish four major research articles. Whether this takes 3 years, 5 years, or 10 years doesn’t matter.

If you are interested in a part-time Ph.D., we would love to hear from you. Please note that if you want to do a part-time Ph.D., then:

  1. You need to work at a company that supports publishing. This must be evidenced by existing publications of employees of that company.
  2. You must have already published at least one paper. This could be a workshop paper or whatever, but there must be some evidence that you are capable of writing research articles. Ideally, you have published an article as part of your current work. Alternatively, you might have published e.g. parts of your Master’s thesis.
  3. Your employer should actively support your Ph.D. This means, your employer should
    1. Allow you to work at least one day per week on your Ph.D.
    2. Support you financially with at least 2,000€ per year e.g. to visit conferences.
    3. Provide you with a computer/laptop to work on

Visiting PhD Students

Contact us, if you would like to work with us for a few months in Siegen. We are always open to self-funded visitors and the DAAD has several programs that may support you.

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.

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. Permanent positions at the NII are advertised on NII’s website. If you are from Germany, the DAAD may have additional programs to fund research visit. As a PhD student, the DAAD may fund you for up to six months, as a postdoctoral researcher up to 2 years.

National Institute of Informatics, Tokyo, Japan (Research on Recommender Systems, Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing)
National Institute of Informatics, Tokyo, Japan

Contact Us

If you would like to do your PhD with us, we would love to hear from you. Please send an email with 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?
  • Nationality:
  • Current place of residence:
  • Why do you want to work in our group?


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