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Open Position

Open position's detailed data


Type: PhD Student
Name (ID): Two PhD positions in deep learning for natural language understanding (OP-20200327-161559)
Supervised by: James HENDERSON


With the launch of a new ‘NCCR Evolving Language’ (, which is a center of excellence involves nearly 40 different research groups from a large variety of disciplines across Switzerland, the Idiap Research Institute seeks qualified candidates for two PhD student positions at the intersection of natural language processing and machine learning. One researcher will investigate attention-based deep learning models of linguistic structure prediction. One researcher will investigate the induction of the meaningful units in language (see also Both researchers will work in collaboration with world-class scientists in computational linguistics, speech recognition, primatology and neuroscience.

The ideal PhD candidates should hold a Masters degree in computer science, computational linguistics or related fields. She or he should have a background in natural language processing or machine learning. The applicant should also have strong programming skills.

The successful PhD candidates will join the Natural Language Understanding group at Idiap, under the supervision of Dr. James Henderson. They will also become doctoral students 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. Starting date is to be negotiated. All queries related to the advertised position can be sent to Dr. James Henderson (

The NCCR and Idiap place great emphasis on gender diversity and we particularly encourage women to apply.

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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