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PHD candidate, Natural Language Processing

The Faculty of Science and Leiden Institute for Advanced Computer Science is looking for a PHD candidate, Natural Language Processing (1.0 FTE).

12 maanden geleden


Begijnhof, Leiden, Zuid-Holland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
38 uur
€ 2222 - € 2840 per maand


This project aims at improving the state of the art in neural modeling of language and translation with a focus on language structure. The successful candidate will be supervised by Dr. Arianna Bisazza and will perform research and development in the following topics:

  • understanding neural language models (e.g. what linguistic phenomena are they able – or unable – to capture?);
  • syntax-aware language and translation models;
  • neural machine translation for morphologically rich languages.


  • MSc in Natural Language Processing, Artificial Intelligence, Computer Science, or a related discipline;
  • experience in machine learning, deep learning, and/or natural language processing;
  • strong programming skills;
  • ability to work independently, good communication skills, and a passion for research;
  • knowledge of neural network frameworks (Torch, PyTorch, Tensorflow, Keras, etc.) is not necessary but highly desirable.


We offer a one year term position with the possibility of three-year renewal after a positive evaluation. Salary range from € 2,222,- to € 2,840,- gross per month (pay scale P, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities).

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses(8.3 %), training and career development and sabbatical leave. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break. More at www.workingat.leiden.edu/.

All our PhD students are embedded in the Leiden University Graduate School of Science www.graduateschools.leidenuniv.nl. Our graduate school offers several PhD training courses at three levels: professional courses, skills training and personal effectiveness. In addition, advanced courses to deepen scientific knowledge are offered by the research school.

Leiden University is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from members of underrepresented groups.

Additional information

Enquiries or any questions about the procedure can be made to Dr. Arianna Bisazza at a.bisazza@liacs.leidenuniv.nl.

To apply for this vacancy, please send, no later than 10 December 2017 an email to Dr. Arianna Bisazza at a.bisazza@liacs.leidenuniv.nl.
Please ensure that you upload the following documents quoting the vacancy number:

  • Your CV;
  • A motivation letter;
  • A link to (a draft of) your Master’s thesis, and other publications (if any);
  • The name of two references (who agreed to support the application).


Leiden is a typical university city, hosting the oldest university in the Netherlands (1575). The University permeates the local surroundings; University premises are scattered throughout the city, and the students who live and study in Leiden give the city its relaxed yet vibrant atmosphere.

Leiden University is one of Europe's foremost research universities. This prominent position gives our graduates a leading edge in applying for academic posts and for functions outside academia.

Faculty of Science

The Faculty of Science is a world-class faculty where staff and students work together in a dynamic international environment. It is a faculty where personal and academic development are top priorities. Our people are driven by curiosity to expand fundamental knowledge and to look beyond the borders of their own discipline; their aim is to benefit science, and to make a contribution to addressing the major societal challenges of the future.

The research carried out at the Faculty of Science is very diverse, ranging from mathematics, computer science, astronomy, physics, chemistry and bio-pharmaceutical sciences to biology and environmental sciences. The research activities are organised in eight institutes. These institutes offer eight bachelor’s and twelve master’s programmes. The faculty has grown strongly in recent years and now has more than 1,300 staff and almost 4,000 students. We are located at the heart of Leiden’s Bio Science Park, one of Europe’s biggest science parks, where university and business life come together. For more information, see www.universiteitleiden.nl/en/science.

The Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science (LIACS) is the Computer Science Institute in the Faculty of Science of Leiden University. According to our recent research visitation, we are one of the foremost computer science departments of the Netherlands. We strive for excellence in a caring institute, where excellence, fun, and diversity go hand in hand. For more information about LIACS, see www.cs.leiden.edu/.