News and Events: Open Positions

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PhD Position in Computational Linguistics / NLP

Deadline: Thursday 14 October 2021
Vacancy details of PhD Position in Computational Linguistics / NLP
Publication date 21 September 2021
Closing date 14 October 2021
Level of education Master's degree
Hours 38 hours per week
Salary indication €2,434 to €3,111 gross per month
Vacancy number 21-743

Are you looking for a PhD position where you can combine insights from linguistics, machine learning, and cognitive science? If you are excited about doing this kind of research in an interdisciplinary environment, with a team of smart and friendly colleagues, then you may want to join us.

We are looking for a PhD candidate with knowledge of Natural Language Processing to join the Dialogue Modelling Group led by Raquel Fernández at the Institute for Logic, Language and Computation (ILLC), University of Amsterdam (UvA). These are some of the topics we work on: computational semantics and pragmatics, computational psycholinguistics, visually grounded language, language generation, language learning from interaction, and conversational agents. If you are passionate about any of these research areas and have an interest in theoretically motivated research or in developing AI systems that are useful for society, we would be happy to have you on board.

What are you going to do

You are expected to:

  • complete and defend a PhD thesis within the official appointment duration of four years;
  • regularly present research results at international workshops and conferences, and to publish them in conference proceedings and journals;
  • participate in and contribute to the organisation of research activities and events at the ILLC, such as workshops and colloquia;
  • make a small contribution to the ILLC’s educational mission, by working as a teaching assistant for courses in your area of expertise and by assisting with the supervision of student research projects

What do we require

  • A Master’s degree in a relevant discipline, such as computational linguistics, artificial intelligence, computer science, or cognitive science; you must have submitted your Master’s thesis by the application deadline.
  • An excellent academic track record.
  • A serious interest in pursuing fundamental research.
  • Good programming skills and experience with deep learning methods for NLP.
  • Good writing and presentation skills.
  • Good social and organisational skills.
  • Full professional proficiency in spoken and written English.
  • Starting date as soon as possible within 2021.

Please note that knowledge of the Dutch language is not required for this position, nor is it required for being able to live in Amsterdam. However, if you wish, as a PhD candidate at the ILLC you will have the opportunity to attend Dutch language classes.

Our offer

A temporary contract for 38 hours per week for the duration of four years (the initial contract will be for a period of 18 months and after satisfactory evaluation it will be extended for a total duration of four years). This should lead to a dissertation (PhD thesis). We will draft an educational plan that includes attendance of courses and (international) meetings. We also expect you to assist in teaching undergraduates and Master’s students. 

Based on a full-time appointment (38 hours per week) the gross monthly salary will range from €2,434 to €3,111 (scale P) gross per month in the last year. This is exclusive of an 8% holiday allowance and an 8.3% end-of-year bonus. A favourable tax agreement, the ‘30% ruling’, may apply to non-Dutch applicants. The Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities is applicable.

Are you curious about our extensive package of secondary employment benefits like our excellent opportunities for study and development? Take a look here.


Do you have questions about this vacancy? Or do you want to know more about our organisation? Please contact:


The Faculty of Science has a student body of around 7,000, as well as 1,600 members of staff working in education, research or support services. Researchers and students at the Faculty of Science are fascinated by every aspect of how the world works, be it elementary particles, the birth of the universe or the functioning of the brain.

The Institute for Logic, Language and Computation (ILLC) is an interdisciplinary research institute that aims at bringing together insights from various fields concerned with information and information processing, such as computational linguistics, computer science, cognitive science, logic, mathematicians, and philosophy. It offers a friendly international research environment with world-class faculty in all of its areas of specialisation, including Natural Language Processing and AI. We are based in the beautiful city of Amsterdam, renowned for its historic system of canals, its laid-back cosmopolitan atmosphere, and its excellent connections to the rest of Europe and the world.

Job application

The UvA is an equal-opportunity employer. We prioritise diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for everyone. We value a spirit of enquiry and perseverance, provide the space to keep asking questions, and promote a culture of curiosity and creativity. The ILLC strives for a better gender balance in its staff. We therefore strongly encourage women to apply for this position.

Do you recognise yourself in the job profile? Then we look forward to receiving your application by 14 October 2021. You can apply online by using the link below. 

Applications in .pdf should include:

  • a motivation letter (1 page maximum) explaining why you are a good fit for this position;
  • detailed CV, including a link to your Master’s thesis (do not attach the thesis itself) and the names, affiliations, and email addresses of two referees;
  • a list of all Master-level modules you have taken, with an official transcript of grades.

Please use the mandatory CV field in the application form to upload one single PDF containing the three items listed above. Only the file uploaded in the CV field will be considered by the search committee. Do not upload any other attachment.

We will invite potential candidates for interviews shortly after the vacancy is closed. The date and time will be indicated to the shortlisted candidates by email.


Please note that this newsitem has been archived, and may contain outdated information or links.