20 ICFO International PhD Fellowship positions

ICFO is offering up to 20 PhD positions to well-qualified graduate students, who wish to obtain a doctoral degree in any of the research fields covered at ICFO. Research is carried out at ICFO.

Our PhD-program brings together top-level training and teaching for young scientists, benefiting from the extensive course offerings of local universities and focused instruction by ICFO professors, in a stimulating, international and interdisciplinary environment. PhD-students have the opportunity to take advantage of our network of excellence, consisting in partners of national and international research institutes and universities, as well as industrial partners in the field.

Our International PhD Fellowship Program welcomes applications from individuals with a degree in a field of science and engineering related to the ICFO research activities.

Fellowships will be offered across all ICFO research groups in the following research areas:

  • Biophysics & Biomedical Optics
  • Optical Sensing, Optoelectronics & Photovoltaics
  • Nonlinear Optics, Ultrafast Optics & Atto-Physics
  • Nanophotonics, Optomechanics & Nanomechanics
  • Experimental Quantum Optics & Quantum Information
  • Theoretical Nanophotonics, Quantum Optics & Quantum Information

You can find more details about ICFO’s Research Groups and Group Leaders at https://www.icfo.eu/research/research.php. If you are interested in discussing possible research topics, please contact ICFO Group Leaders directly.

The positions are offered in the scope of several fellowship programs currently active within the ICFO International PhD Program:

  • The ICFOstepstone Program, a Marie Sklowdowska-Curie-COFUND action under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (GA 665884 and 713729), awarding INCOMING Fellowships to outstanding graduate students.
  • The Severo Ochoa PhD-fellowships funded by the Spanish Ministry of Innovation, Economy and Competitiveness.
  • The FI-DGR PhD-Fellowships funded by the Generalitat de Catalunya.

In addition, internal ICFO PhD group positions might become available, for which we may retain candidates applying to this present opening.

Requirements & Conditions

To be eligible for an ICFO PhD position, candidates must:

  • Have an internationally-recognized Master-equivalent degree. The degree must be in a field of science and engineering related to the ICFO research activities. Degrees issued within the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) must have an equivalent to 300 ECTS, out of which a minimum of 60 ECTS must have been obtained in postgraduate studies. Please, if in doubt regarding your academic eligibility, contact us at jobs@icfo.eu.
  • Have an excellent academic record, previous research experience and a strong commitment for scientific research.
  • Have a high working knowledge of English.

Additionally, candidates for the ICFOstepstone-COFUND positions must comply with the following EU-rules by the time of activation of the COFUND-PhD-contract:

  • Candidates should not have resided in Spain for more than 12 of the last 36 months.
  • The Master-equivalent degree should not be older than 4 years. Exceptions are made for documented periods of parental leave. Other equivalent exceptions may be considered when properly documented and motivated by the applicant, e.g, in case of applicants from underdeveloped countries, minorities, or for applicants that pursued their studies under comparatively unfavorable conditions.

Persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply. No restrictions of citizenship or gender apply to the ICFO International PhD Fellowship Program.

The conditions of the positions awarded in the scope of the ICFO International PhD fellowship program are as follows:

  • An explicit follow-up/ renewal procedure at the end of this first stage. During this period, students already take part in the ICFO working environment, join a research group, and work with their supervisor to define a research project.
  • After this initial period, students are formally enrolled in the PhD Program, and the full PhD Fellowship activated. Fellowships are offered for periods of three years, renewable for an additional fourth year, and are formalized via a PhD-contract. Continuity and renewal are subject to satisfactory performance in the PhD studies and related research activities, evaluated annually by the Thesis Director and the ICFO PhD Committee.
  • Selected candidates shall start between September and October 2017.
  • All ICFO fellowships include medical care coverage and work accident insurance through the Spanish Social Security system, providing access to the Spanish public health care system.
  • Salary conditions vary according to the fellowship scheme finally awarded: ICFOstepstone Fellows receive the salary stipulated by the COFUND program of the European Commission, while Fellows of the other schemes receive the salary according to the Spanish National PhD-fellowship programs.

Application Process

To apply, suitable candidates are requested to submit (in English) online the following material:

  • Cover Letter with declaration of research interests,
  • Curriculum Vitae, including contact details,
  • Scanned copies of the complete (Bachelor and Master equivalent) academic transcripts in English or Spanish,
  • Scanned copies of the degree certificates, if available at the time of application,
  • IMPORTANT: The candidate should ask 2 referees, to be indicated in the online application form, to send reference letters directly jobs@icfo.eu before the application deadline.
  • The print-out of the equivalence calculation of your academic results/ GPA accomplished via http://www.foreigncredits.com/Resources/GPA-Calculator/
  • If available, scanned copy of standardized test results (GRE, TOEFL, etc.). Note that submission of test results is optional, but they can be particularly helpful for evaluating candidates with degrees obtained outside the European Higher Education Area.

All required application material, including letters of reference, must be complete in order for the application to be considered.

The deadline for submission of applications for the present call is March 26, 2017.

In a first step of the selection procedure, applications will be assessed by the selection committee based on merit and potential, measured in terms of the academic record and personal achievements. Academic excellence is a must. Pro-activity, participation in community activities, and capacity for team-work are also taken into account.
Applicants will be notified the results of the first evaluation stage by April 24, 2017.

In the second step of the selection procedure, shortlisted candidates will receive invitations to visit ICFO for personal interviews with the selection committee and ICFO Group/ Team Leaders, planned to take place during in on May 25-26, 2017.

Fellowship offers will be made to the successful candidates shortly after the interviews, but by June 06, 2017 at the latest.

Please note that candidates should be willing to be contacted by phone during the entire selection process.

At all stages of the process, candidates may contact ICFO Human Resources and Education via jobs@icfo.eu.

For complete information about the PhD Admissions process at ICFO, please see http://phd.icfo.eu/.

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