PhD candidate in the area of Multimedia Analytics for Urban Computing

Faculty of Science – Informatics Institute

Publication date
3 April 2018
Level of education
Master's degree
Salary indication
€2,222 to €2,840 gross per month
Closing date
8 May 2018
38 hours per week
Vacancy number

The Faculty of Science holds a leading position internationally in its fields of research and participates in a large number of cooperative programs with universities, research institutes and businesses. The faculty has a student body of around 6,000 and 1,500 members of staff, spread over eight research institutes and a number of faculty-wide support services. A considerable part of the research is made possible by external funding from Dutch and international organizations and the private sector. The Faculty of Science offers thirteen Bachelor's degree programs and eighteen Master’s degree programs in the fields of the exact sciences, computer science and information studies, and life and earth sciences.

Since September 2010, the whole faculty has been housed in a brand new building at the Science Park in Amsterdam. The installment of the faculty has made the Science Park one of the largest centers of academic research in the Netherlands.

The Informatics Institute is one of the large research institutes with the faculty, with a focus on complex information systems divided in three broad themes: Computational Science,  Systems and Security  and Artificial Intelligence. The institute has a prominent international standing and is active in a dynamic scientific area, with a strong innovative character and an extensive portfolio of externally funded projects.

Project description

This PhD position is part of a European project bringing together cities in the North Sea Region in addressing urban challenges. The position focuses on the analysis of large scale multimedia data (images, text, and metadata), in combination with open data (e.g. statistics on demographics, economy, and services), and participatory data, i.e. information contributed by citizens. Potential applications include analysing and improving city liveability, understanding citizen needs, and improving government services.

To this end, the research in this project will build on e.g. deep learning methodologies that allow for the integration of multimodal information and aims to break new ground in multimedia analytics by:

  • developing innovative ways of fusing highly heterogeneous content;
  • facilitating interactive search and exploration in large multimedia collections;
  • translating relevant questions of societal importance into novel data science solutions.

Successful applicants will:

  • publish and present their research findings at international top-tier conferences and/or in leading journals;
  • make significant contributions to advancing the state of the art in multimedia analytics.


Applicants for the PhD position must have a MSc in computer science, artificial intelligence, data science, or a closely related area. 

In addition, a successful candidate should:

  • have a strong background in computer vision, statistics and machine learning;
  • have some experience with deep learning programming frameworks (TensorFlow, Torch, PyTorch, Caffe, etc.);
  • have excellent programming skills in at least two of the following languages: Python, C, C++;
  • enjoy working with real-world problems and real-word, large data sets;
  • have excellent communication skills, both oral and written;
  • enjoy working in a closely collaborating team.

Further information

Further information can be obtained from: 


The appointment will be full-time (38 hours a week) for a period of four years (initial employment is 18 months). Periodic evaluations will be held after 9 and 14 months, and upon positive evaluation, the appointment will be extended to a total of 48 months. The appointment must lead to a dissertation (PhD thesis). An educational plan that includes attendance of courses, summer and/or winter schools, and national and international meetings will be drafted for the PhD candidate. The PhD candidate is also expected to assist in teaching of undergraduate students.

The salary is in accordance with the university regulations for academic personnel. The salary will range from €2,222 (first year) up to a maximum of €2,840 (last year) before tax per month (scale P) based on a full-time appointment. There are also secondary benefits, such as an 8% holiday allowance per year and an end of year allowance of 8.3%. The Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities is applicable.

Since Amsterdam is a very international city where almost everybody speaks and understands English, candidates need not be afraid of the language barrier.

The successful candidates will be based in the Informatics Institute at the University of Amsterdam. The Informatics Institute consists of more than 40 members of research faculty, over 25 post-doctoral researchers, and more than 100 PhD students. Members of the institute are actively pursuing a variety of research initiatives, including computer vision, machine learning, information retrieval, social network analysis, and multimedia analytics.

Some of the things we have to offer:

  • competitive pay and excellent benefits
  • extremely friendly working environment
  • high-level of interaction
  • location near the city center (10 minutes by bicycle) of one of Europe's most beautiful and lively cities
  • international environment (10+ nationalities in the group)
  • access to high-end computing facilities (cluster with 4,000+ cores)
  • brand-new building

Job application

The University of Amsterdam is striving for a better balance in its staff whereby, by equal suitability, the appointment of a female candidate will have our preference. Women are, therefore, strongly encouraged to apply.

Your application should include your curriculum vitae, a transcript of your BSc and MSc course grades, and a letter of motivation. Please include the names and contact details of three references. The letter of motivation should summarize:

  1. our interest in the multimedia analytics;
  2. evidence of your suitability for the job;
  3. any relevant research contributions in the past, such as your MSc project, and
  4. what you hope to gain from the position.

All these should be grouped in one PDF attachment.

Applications may only be submitted by sending your application to To process your application immediately, please quote vacancy number 18-162.

The Committee does not guarantee that late or incomplete applications will be considered. Applications not mentioning vacancy number and the title of the position you are applying for in the subject-line will not be processed.

Applications will be accepted until 8 May 2018. #LI-DNP

No agencies please

Published by  University of Amsterdam