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University of Leuven
Belgium, Leuven
Job Info
Job Status: Expired
No of Vacancies: 1
Date Posted: January 4, 2018
Expiry Date: February 08, 2018
Job Type: PhD
Job Level: Any
Salary Info
Salary Type: Negotiable
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(ref. BAP-2017-691)

The STADIUS Center for Dynamical Systems, Signal Processing and Data Analytics, Prof. Panos Patrinos, at the Department of Electrical Engineering (ESAT), KU Leuven is offering a fully funded, 4-year PhD position on the topic of the theory and algorithms for structured non convex optimization. KU Leuven is among the top European universities (ranked first in Times Higher Education list of most innovative universities in Europe) and a hub for interdisciplinary research in the field of optimization. The PhD position is in the context of the research project “A unifying algorithmic framework for structured optimization”, funded by the Research Foundation – Flanders (FWO) for advancing fundamental scientific research.


The objective of the project is to develop and implement a unifying methodological and algorithmic framework for structured non smooth and non convex optimization,targeting problems resulting from various application domains, such as control and machine learning.  The project will build upon ongoing, promising research of the group that establishes a connection between non smooth and smooth optimization, leading to new interpretations, insights, non convex extensions and improved versions of popular algorithms such as ADMM.The candidate will contribute in further exploring this direction by conducting fundamental research in algorithmic optimization and/or developing optimization software (in Julia, Python, C) to solve real-world problems in control and/or machine learning, such as embedded model predictive control for autonomous driving and deep learning.


Applicants should have a Master’s degree from a good-quality university in mathematics, engineering, computer science or a related field. They should possess a strong background and interest in mathematics and, ideally, numerical optimization. They should have excellent analytical and problem solving skills and, preferably, well-developed programming skills. Depending on their interest, background and skills the focus of the PhD project can be either on fundamental theory and algorithmic development or software development and applications related to either control or machine learning. Applicants should also have good English communication skills.


  • A fully funded PhD position for four years at the KU Leuven, one of the top European universities and a hub for interdisciplinary research in the field of optimization.
  • KU Leuven offers an attractive working environment, generous remuneration, as well as other employment benefits.
  • As a PhD student at KU Leuven you have many opportunities to participate at international conferences, research projects and other relevant events, which will extend your professional network and benefit your future career.


To apply send email to Prof. dr. Panos Patrinos, with subject “PhD application: structured optimization”, attaching an academic CV, a pdf of your diplomas and transcript of course work and grades, a statement of research interests and career goals (1 page max.), sample of technical writing (publication or thesis) and contact details of at least two referees. Deadline: As soon as possible. The position may be closed as soon as a competent candidate has applied.
You can apply for this job no later than February 08, 2018 via the online application tool
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