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Type: PhD Student
Name (ID): PhD position in speech processing applied to classification of motor speech disorders (OP-20170628-160721)
Supervised by: Prof. Hervé Bourlard


The Idiap Research Institute seeks qualified candidates for one PhD student position in the field of speech processing and classification of motor speech disorders from the speech signal (pathological speech analysis and synthesis for perception and production).
The research will be conducted in the framework of the Swiss NSF funded Sinergia project MoSpeeDi (Motor Speech Disorders: characterizing phonetic speech planning and motor speech programming/execution and their impairments). This is a consortium project that involves Idiap, the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Science of University of Geneva, the Laboratoire de Phonétique et Phonologie, Paris 3-Sorbonne Nouvelle, and the Department of Neurology, Geneva University Hospitals and Faculty of Medicine, University of Geneva.
Motor speech disorders refer to a broad set of altered speech dimensions (articulation, speech rate, voice, prosody) and of impaired speech processes, which alter dramatically patients’ communication skills in the course of several neurological diseases, including stroke and neurodegenerative diseases.
The research will be focused on feature extraction and classification of impaired/healthy speech and its subtypes that will include apraxia of speech, and several types of dysarthria incl. Parkinson’s disease. The project partners will provide data recording and clinical evaluation.
The ideal PhD candidate should hold a Master degree in computer science, electrical engineering or related fields. S/he should have a background in statistics or applied mathematics, optimization, linear algebra and signal processing. The applicant should also have strong programming skills and be familiar with MATLAB, C/C++, and various scripting languages such as Python and with the Linux environment.
The successful PhD candidate will become a doctoral student at EPFL ( conditional on parallel application to, and acceptance by, the EPFL Doctoral School ( Appointment for the PhD position is for a maximum of 4 years, provided successful progress, and should lead to a dissertation. Annual gross salary ranges from 47,000 Swiss Francs (first year) to 50,000 Swiss Francs (last year). Starting date is immediate or to be negotiated in 2017. All queries related to the advertised position can be sent to Prof. Hervé Bourlard (

About Idiap:

Idiap is an independent, not-for-profit, research institute recognized and funded by the Swiss Federal Government, the State of Valais, and the City of Martigny.

Idiap offers competitive salaries and conditions at all levels in a young, high-quality, dynamic, and multicultural environment. Idiap is an equal opportunity employer and is actively involved in the "Advancement of Women in Science" European initiative. The Institute seeks to maintain a principle of open competition (on the basis of merit) to appoint the best candidate, provides equal opportunity for all candidates, and equally encourage both genders to apply.

Idiap is located in the town of Martigny in Valais, a scenic region in the south of Switzerland, surrounded by the highest mountains of Europe, and offering exceptional quality of life, exciting recreational activities, including hiking, climbing and skiing, as well as varied cultural activities. It is within close proximity to Lausanne and Geneva. Although Idiap is located in the French part of Switzerland, English is the official working language. Free French lessons are also provided on a complimentary basis.

For frequently asked questions (FAQs) about living in Switzerland, please go to

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