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Three PhD Positions in Cognitive Science & Artificial Intelligence on virtual reality avatar project

The Cognitive Science & Artificial Intelligence department at Tilburg University is looking for three enthusiastic colleagues for PhD positions on the …

5 maanden geleden


Warandelaan, Tilburg, Noord-Brabant
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
40 - 40 uur


The Cognitive Science & Artificial Intelligence department at Tilburg University is looking for three enthusiastic colleagues for PhD positions on the project VIBE (Virtual Humans in the Brabant Economy). This project aims to develop embodied conversational agents in virtual reality that look and behave like humans both verbally and non-verbally and can be deployed in hospital settings. Together with 13 partners, including Tilburg University, universities of applied sciences, several technology firms, the Netherlands Aerospace Center, and three hospitals, we will build these agents for virtual, mixed and augmented reality environments, train these agents using sensing technologies and data science techniques, and deploy and test the agents in three hospitals that partner in this project.

The €7 million four-year project has been funded by OP Zuid, European Union, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and the province of Noord-Brabant. On this ambitious project Tilburg University will hire three PhD candidates to work in an interdisciplinary team of knowledge institutions, corporate partners and hospitals. PhD candidates should excel in areas directly related to the project, such as dialogue management; speech recognition & speech synthesis; computational linguistics & machine learning; and recognizing & synthesizing non-verbal communication.

The positions we are advertising are for four years fulltime. The PhD student will be an academic member of the department, will publish in journals and conference proceedings, and will generally support the VIBE research project s/he is part of, including strengthening the ties between knowledge institutions, corporate partners and hospitals.


The successful PhD candidate holds a (research) master in a relevant area and is expected to have an academic mindset with an entrepreneurial interest, and is supposed to be enthusiastic, creative, and solution-driven. The candidate is comfortable with working in a multidisciplinary research team, has an excellent command of English and good professional communication skills. Specifically, the candidate has a strong background in areas such as cognitive science, computer science, data science, engineering, computational linguistics and virtual, mixed or augmented reality.


The selected candidates will start with a contract for one year, which – upon a positive outcome of the evaluation – will continue in a contract for the remaining three years. The selected candidate is expected to have written a PhD thesis by the end of the contract (which may be based on publications).

Tilburg University is rated among the top of Dutch employers and has excellent terms of employment. The collective labor agreement of Dutch University applies. The PhD candidates will be ranked in the Dutch university job ranking system (UFO) as a PhD-student (promovendus) with a starting salary of € 2,222 gross per month in the first year, up to € 2,840 in the fourth year (amounts fulltime).

The university offers very good fringe benefits, such as a holiday allowance of 8% and an end-of-year bonus of 8.3% (annually), an options model for terms and conditions of employment and reimbursement of moving expenses. Tilburg University provides support in finding accommodation (for foreign employees). Candidates from outside the Netherlands may qualify for a (temporary) tax-free allowance equal to 30% of their taxable salary. The university will apply for such an allowance on their behalf.

Additional information

For more information on this PhD position, please contact the principal investigator of the project, prof. dr. Max M. Louwerse (mlouwerse@uvt.nl).