PhD Candidate for Neural Networks for Stochastic Optimal Control
Theory (1,0 fte)
Faculty of Science
Maximum salary: € 2,612 gross/month
Vacancy number: 62.89.12
Closing date: 31 January 2013
As a PhD Candidate you will work on the project Neural Engineering
Transformative Technology (NETT) is a Marie Curie Initial Training
Network funded under the EU FP7 programme. The project brings
together engineering, physics and neuroscience for the design and
development of brain-computer interface systems, cognitive
computers and neural prosthetics. The project consists of 7
partners and 11 associated partners. The NETT work package on
adaptive control methods is coordinated by Prof. Bert Kappen of
the SNN research group on Machine Learning. The aim of the work
package is to build neural architectures for stochastic optimal
control and learning. The research is motivated by the recent work
on path integral control methods. For this class of control
methods, the optimal control can be computed using sampling. This
approach has shown to be very effective for robotics and learning.
The current project will address the question of how such control
computations can be implemented in neural networks.
The PhD track includes a three-month secondment in the second year
and a three-month internship with the project’s industrial partner
in the third year. Candidates should therefore be flexible and be
willing to move abroad.
SNN Machine Learning is a research group dedicated to fundamental
research in the fields of machine learning and computational
neuroscience. Specific topics are Bayesian networks, approximate
inference methods, bio-informatics, expert systems, stochastic
control and collaborative decision making. The group currently
consists of 11 researchers.
SNN Machine Learning is part of the Donders Institute for Brain,
Cognition and Behaviour at Radboud University Nijmegen, where
approximately 400 researchers with backgrounds in physics,
biology, medicine, genetics, psychology and the social sciences
study the relationships between brain, cognitive processes and
What we expect from you
You should be in the first, second, third or fourth year of your
research career in physics, mathematics, engineering or computer
science. Preference will be given to candidates with experience in
mathematical and computational neuroscience. As part of our
commitment to promoting diversity, we particularly encourage
female candidates to apply. To comply with the mobility rules of
the Marie Curie Actions, applicants must not have resided, worked
or studied in the Netherlands for more than 12 months in the three
years prior to September 2012.
You will be selected on the basis of excellence, theoretical
background, and willingness and enthusiasm to engage in
multidisciplinary research; relevant academic background and
training; academic references and/or prior publications.
What we have to offer
We offer you:
- employment: 1,0 fte;
- a maximum gross monthly salary of € 2,612 based on a 38-hour
- in addition to the salary: an 8% holiday allowance and an 8.3%
- the gross starting salary amounts to €2,042 per month based on
full-time employment, and will increase to €2,612 per month in the
fourth year. Above this salary there will be paid allowances
according to ITN conditions;
- you will be appointed for an initial period of 18 months, after
which your performance will be evaluated. If the evaluation is
positive, the contract will be extended by 2.5 years;
- you will be classified as a PhD Candidate (promovendus) in the
Dutch university job-ranking system (UFO).
Are you interested in our excellent employment
Applications should contain a complete CV, a brief description of
your research interests and a copy of a recent publication or
Would you like to know more?
Further information on: SNN Machine Learning
Prof. dr. H.J. Kappen
Telephone: +31 24 3614241
Are you interested?
It is Radboud University Nijmegen's policy to only accept
applications by e-mail. Please send your application, stating
vacancy number 62.89.12, to
, for the
attention of ms. M. van Oostveen, before 31 January 2013.
For more information on the application procedure: +31 24 3652131
No commercial propositions please.