The PhD Programme lasts three years and the official language of the programme is English.
The Free University of Bozen - Bolzano offers this Computer Science PhD programme. PhD students are expected to work full-time on their research. During the PhD, it is advisable to spend a period of 6-12 months at a National or International research center.
Candidates are strongly advised to contact their desired research centers at the Faculty of Computer Science before applying. This way, they can obtain a clear idea of the specific research carried out at the Faculty.
The Selection Committee selects PhD students based on a comparative assessment of the qualification of applicants, taking into account also feedback from potential supervisors, especially those who have grants available to support the PhD students, and determines the winners based on the merits of each candidate.
The Selection Committee also selects those candidates who are qualified to start a PhD program at the Free University of Bozen/Bolzano, but who cannot be admitted for lack of space. Should a selected winner not accept the position, such candidates will be next in line for the position.
The goal of the programme is to enable students to conduct independent research in Computer Science. This includes the ability to efficiently communicate ideas orally and in writing and to work in teams.
To successfully complete the programme a student has to do original research on a selected topic in a manner that advances the state of the art in an area of Computer Science.
Given the duration of the programme of three years, it is of crucial importance for students to focus their efforts on their research work.
Students are guided in this task in four ways:
Always verify the dates on the programme website.
Research in the Faculty of Computer Science is focused on three areas that are treated on a long-term basis by research groups whose members collectively examine topics related to each of the three research areas. The research areas, with a selection of topics, are:
The research activities in the area of database and information systems focus on key aspects of applied computer science, including data warehousing and data mining, the integration of heterogeneous and distributed databases, time-varying information, data models, and query processing. The research approach is primarily constructive in its outset, and it includes substantial experimental and analytical elements.
The development activities cover the design of data models and structures, and the development of algorithms, data structures, languages, and systems. The experimental activities verify real world artifacts with the help of prototypes and simulations. The analytic activities include the analysis of the algorithmic complexity and the evaluation of languages. The main goal is theoretically sound results that solve real world problems.
The research topics in knowledge representation are focused on foundational and practical aspects of knowledge representation technologies applied to information systems. The whole life cycle ranging from the design to the deployment of such technologies is covered: the conceptual modeling of various types of knowledge, the linguistic and logical aspects of knowledge, the integration of heterogeneous knowledge sources, including information coming from the Internet, the usage of knowledge to support the intelligent retrieval of information, and the usage of knowledge to create virtual services on the net.
The research topics in software engineering are focused on the empirical and quantitative study of innovative models for software development. The target analysis techniques include both traditional statistics, and new approaches, such as computational intelligence, Bayesian models, and meta-analytical systems.
The innovative software development techniques include (a) methods based on lean management, such as agile methods, with a specific interest for benchmarking and identification of defects, and (b) open source development models, with specific attention for self organizing systems and the analysis of the resulting qualit
The doctoral works treat topics from the three research areas that develop from the ongoing work of the groups.
Every year the Free University of Bolzano decrees the institution of a new PhD cycle, and announces a public competition for the admission to the corresponding PhD reserach programmes.
The public competition is open to all, regardless of sex, age and citizenship, who possess a Master's Degree (Laurea magistrale), and Italian undergraduate degree from the old system or a foreign degree equivalent to the degrees mentioned above.
The admission procedure for the PhD in Computer Science does not foresee an entrance exam: candidates are evaluated on the basis of their qualification. A good knowledge of the English language is required. A prerequisite for the admission to the PhD is a deep knowledge of the fundamental techniques and methods used in computer science.
It is expected that students are able to write and speak fluently in English.
Grants are assigned following the rank list drawn up by the Evaluation Committee. If an applicant decides to forego a grant, the next enrolled applicant on the rank list will be offered the grant.
The annual study grant amounts to € 17,000 gross.
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