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PhD Candidate in Computational Social Sciences (m/f) - Ref: 19-23

Campus Belval , 11, Porte des Sciences, L - 4366 Esch-Sur-Alzette , Luxembourg

The Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research (LISER) and the University of Luxembourg

are recruiting a

PhD Candidate in Computational Social Sciences (m/f)

• Ref 19-23

• Full-time, 40 hours/week

• Fixed-term contract for up to 4 years

• Work contract at LISER

• Enrolment in the Doctoral School in Humanities and Social Sciences of the University of Luxembourg

• PhD co-supervision by Alessio Fusco (LISER), Philippe Van Kerm (LISER and University of Luxembourg) and Stéphane Bordas (University of Luxembourg)

• Pluri-disciplinary Doctoral Training Unit “Data-driven Computational Modelling and Applications” (DRIVEN)

• Earliest start date: 1st May 2020


LISER and the University of Luxembourg invite motivated applicants for a PhD position. Enrolled as a PhD student in the Doctoral School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Luxembourg, you will be working at LISER within the pluri-disciplinary Doctoral Training Unit DRIVEN (Data-driven Computational Modelling and Applications).

DRIVEN (https://driven.uni.lu) will train a cohort of 19 Doctoral Candidates who will develop data-driven modelling approaches common to a number of applications strategic to the Luxembourgish Research Area and Luxembourg's Smart Specialisation Strategies. DRIVEN builds a bridge between state-of-the-art data driven modelling approaches and particular application domains, including Computational Physics and Engineering, Computational Biology and Life Sciences, and Computational Behavioural and Social Sciences.

DRIVEN is funded by the Luxembourg Fonds National de la Recherche PRIDE scheme (https://www.fnr.lu/funding-instruments/pride/).

The PhD project is part of the Computational Behavioural and Social Sciences cluster of DRIVEN.

Integrating the research stream ”Predicting well-being in old age”, the Doctoral Candidate will address how the conditions, events and environments to which individuals are confronted over their lifetime shape their well-being as they grow older. The complexity and high dimensionality of these mechanisms challenge traditional modelling techniques. The PhD project will develop data-driven predictive models for a range of dimensions of well-being factors in old age on the basis of life course individual data on employment trajectories, migration, partnerships and household demographics. The project will exploit the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE) which has collected individual level data of more than 120,000 individuals aged 50+ in Europe. SHARE also collects information about people's lives across many dimensions. Supervised learning algorithms will be developed to map life course information to later life outcomes.

You will be co-supervised by Alessio Fusco (LISER), Philippe Van Kerm (LISER and University of Luxembourg) and Stéphane Bordas (University of Luxembourg).

Your primary tasks as a Doctoral Candidate are to:

• Manage and drive forward your PhD research project;

• Attend doctoral school courses, trainings and social events both at the University of Luxembourg and LISER;

• Write scientific articles and your PhD thesis;

• Disseminate your research at conferences, seminars and policy relevant events.

Your Profile

• MA or MSc in a social science or DRIVEN related discipline, i.e. Computer science, mathematics, statistics or computational engineering with a strong interest in social sciences;

• Strong background in quantitative methods and statistical analysis;

• Interest in data science, machine learning, data visualization and computational methods;

• Experience with programming and related software development environments is an asset (Stata/R/Python/C++);

• Excellent verbal communication and academic writing skills in English;

• Willingness to work in an inter-cultural and international environment;

• Ability to work independently and as part of a team;

• Curiosity and self-motivation.

We offer

• An exciting multi-disciplinary and international research environment with ample opportunities to exchange with scholars from related disciplines at both LISER and the University of Luxembourg (situated in the same building);

• A competitive salary for the full-time PhD position for a period of maximum of 4 consecutive years;

• A package of mentoring, training and career development as well as access to a wide range of courses and seminars offered by LISER and the University of Luxembourg;

• Enrollment as a PhD candidate in the Doctoral School of Humanities and Social Sciences of University of Luxembourg, within the DRIVEN Doctoral Training Unit.

About LISER and the University of Luxembourg

The Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research offers a vibrant and stimulating international research environment. It is a publicly funded research institute located in Luxembourg and devoted to applied empirical research in economic, social and spatial sciences. Interdisciplinarity is a key element for stimulating scientific innovation. The institute attracts researchers from all over the world and high-level doctoral training is part of the institute’s activities. The institute employs 170 people including a survey and data center as well as 90 researchers from all over the world active in the fields of economics, sociology, geography and other social sciences (see https://www.liser.lu). The working languages at the institute are French and English. LISER is host to the Luxembourg Country Team of the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (see http://www.share-project.org).

Founded in 2003, the University of Luxembourg is the only public university of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Structured around three faculties and three interdisciplinary centres, the University of Luxembourg is a modern institution with a personal atmosphere which aspires to be one of Europe’s most highly regarded universities with a distinctly international, multilingual and interdisciplinary character (see www.uni.lu). It aims at fostering the cross-fertilisation of research and teaching, is relevant to its country, known worldwide for its research and teaching in targeted areas, and becomes an innovative model for contemporary European Higher Education. Data modelling and simulation is one of the cross-disciplinary area of research excellence of the University (https://wwwen.uni.lu/research/focus_areas).

Information on research activities as well as the living and working conditions in Luxembourg can be found at the EURAXESS portal (www.euraxess.lu).

Application process

Please provide the following information before 31st January 2020:

• a letter of application outlining your profile and thematic interest in relation to the ‘predicting well-being in old age’ project and demonstrating your quantitative skills and motivation to carry out this doctoral project;

• a CV;

• Copies of relevant degree diplomas, transcripts with grades in English, French or German;

• two letters of recommendation (to be uploaded with the application documents or sent separately to recruitment@liser.lu);

• If available, Master’s thesis (final or draft, if draft, then state the expected submission date).

Please submit your complete application via https://jobs.liser.lu/jobs

(Students graduating over the summer 2020 are also encouraged to apply).

Closing date for applications: 31st January 2020

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for Skype interviews in February 2020.

For project related information, please contact Alessio Fusco (alessio.fusco@liser.lu).

For administrative matters, please contact recruitment@liser.lu

LISER is an Equal Opportunity Employer