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Type: PhD Student
Name (ID): Two PhD positions in uncertainty quantification for inverse problems with applications in geosciences and cosmology (OP-20180419-133324)
Supervised by: David GINSBOURGER


The Uncertainty Quantification and Optimal Design group at Idiap Resarch Institute is seeking two highly qualified, motivated and creative PhD students to work on the project "Uncertainty quantification and efficient design of experiments for data- and simulation-driven inverse problem solving" funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation.

The ideal candidates will have a master degree with a focus on mathematical/statistical topics, and a taste for both theoretical investigations and numerical experiments.

One PhD student will work primarily on "Modelling and predicting distribution-valued fields with applications to inversion under uncertainty". The corresponding subproject will involve applications in computational cosmology (with Prof. Alexandre Refregier's cosmology research group at ETH Zürich) and also in stochastic optimization for hydrogeology within an ongoing interdisciplinary collaboration.

The other PhD student will focus on "Stochastic approaches to estimate implicit sets under indirect measurements". The corresponding subproject will involve applications in computational geosciences, and notably the development of experimental design algorithms for planning volcano gravimetry measurements (collaboration with Prof. Niklas Linde's research group at the University of Lausanne). Also, applications in filament estimation will be considered.

The two PhD students will be supervised by Prof. David Ginsbourger, head of the Uncertainty Quantification and Optimal Design group at Idiap and titular professor at the University of Bern. While the students will be mainly affiliated with Idiap Research Institute, they will be registered as PhD students in statistics at the University of Bern, where they will also be affiliated with the Institute of Mathematical Statistics and Actuarial Science (IMSV) and will have the possibility to take part in IMSV's life (e.g. teaching). Besides this, the project will also benefit from the expertise in mathematical statistics of Prof. Wolfgang Polonik (UC Davis).

For both positions, funding is available for a maximal duration of four years. Annual gross salary ranges from 47,000 Swiss Francs (first year) to 50,000 Swiss Francs (last year). The starting date is negotiable, preferably September-October 2018. All enquiries should be sent to

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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