Italy: PhD Programme in Computer Science at the Free University of Bozen-Bolzano

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Description: The Free University of Bozen-Bolzano was founded in 1997 as a multilingual, internationally oriented institution.A public competition for the allocation of PhD positions in the Faculty of Computer Science is announced, for 10 places, of which 6places will be covered by grants. The PhD Programme lasts three years and the official language of the programme is English.

Requirements: PhD students are expected to work full-time on their research. Duringthe PhD, it is advisable to spend a period of 6-12 months at anational 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. It is expected that students are able to write and speak fluently in English.

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.

Instructions for application (pre-enrollment) can be found here:

Deadline: The application must be complete by 13 September 2013, 12:00 a.m.

Research Areas:

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 their research topics, are:

*Knowledge Representation and Databases*
web page:
contact person: Alessandro Artale

-Logic based languages for knowledge representation
-Intelligent database access
-Foundations of controlled natural language
-Temporal aspects of data and knowledge representation
-Extending database technologies

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.

*Databases and Information Systems*
-Management and analysis of large data sets
-Temporal data models and databases
-Data evolution and integration
-Approximation techniques for large databases
-Machine learning techniques for searching and selecting information

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.

*Software Engineering*
-Agile methodologies, lean management, and open source
-Measurement and assurance of software quality, reliability and development
-Distributed computing and distributed service-oriented architectures
-Information technology and business alignment
-Component-based development and reuse of software
-Cooperative systems and interoperability of software

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 quality

The doctoral works treat topics from the three research areas that develop from the ongoing work of the groups.

The following list contains possible topics for doctoral work:
-Data-centric business processes
-Data Quality for Linked Open Data
-Process-Aware Business Intelligence
-Management of Business Processes and Data
-Graph-structured Data Management
-Knowledge driven information access
-Databases and Ontologies
-Game-based technology-enhanced learning
-Semantic interoperability in distributed environments
-Query processing in Ontology-based systems
-Knowledge discovery in bioinformatics
-Efficient querying of data under temporal constraints
-Conceptual modeling and reasoning with temporal information
-Optimizing a sequence of recommendations
-Lifestyle change enforcement and support

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