Call for applications: "Artificial Intelligence for the Sciences" doctoral program


Led by Université PSL, the "Artificial Intelligence for the Sciences" doctoral program launches a call for applications. 23 PhD topics are available at the interfaces of AI or massive data processing. Applications should be submitted before February 26, 2021.

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The "Artificial intelligence for the Sciences" doctoral program is hosted by Université PSL with the support of the European program Horizon 2020 - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions-COFUND.

This unique, structuring and international project aims to create a research community from multiple PSL laboratories and schools, along with a dozen of private and public partners. AI4theSciences will co-fund for 26 doctoral fellowships on the interfaces of AI or massive data processing.

The future PhD fellows selected for the "Artificial intelligence for the Sciences" project will receive a specific training on their concentration and also benefit from weekly seminars and conferences to develop a set of skills in connection with AI and Machine Learning, writing popular science articles, Open Science, cross-disciplinary skills, etc.
Each doctoral student will benefit from a joint supervision: a supervisor by a PSL expert in the chosen subject, and a co-supervision by a specialist in AI techniques or big data – who may work for laboratory outside PSL or for a private partner located in France or in Europe.

Applications for PhD projects are open from November 17, 2020 to February 26, 2021. The winners will begin their doctoral project in Autumn 2021.

Requirements for applicants

  • Applicants must hold a master’s degree (or be in the process of obtaining one) or hold a University degree equivalent to a European Master’s (5-year duration) when the call is closed;
  • There are no requirements based on nationality or age, but applicants should not have lived or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in France for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the deadline of the call (MSCA Mobility rule), namely between the 27th of February 2018 to the 26th of February 2021
  • Applicants should be available to start the program on schedule.

The applicants should provide the following documents:

  • Transcripts translated into English of the master’s degree (or equivalent 5-year degree). A copy of the master’s degree or a certificate of achievement will be required later on for the final registration;
  • International resume and a cover letter explaining why the student wants to prepare a PhD, why they apply to this offer and their professional project (guidelines will be given to the applicants in order to help them in the writing of their letter);
  • Two reference letters written by academics;
  • A signed statement on the mobility rules, availability and conflicts of interest (the template available at the end of the guide for applicants).

Selection of applications

For the start of the 2021 academic year, 15 doctoral contracts, out of the 23 subjects listed below, will be jointly funded.

The future doctoral students of the program will be selected between from March and June 2021 in two rounds:

  • Selection on the basis of the application package from March 15, 2021 to April 9, 2021 (round 1)
  • Interviews with candidates from June 1 to June 25, 2021 (All candidates will be contacted in April 2021)

The excellence of the applicants - an essential principle of the Horizon 2020-MSCA projects - will lead to select the 15 PhD projects out of the 23 offered in the call. Out of the 23 projects open for application, 9 projects will therefore not be funded but may be submitted during the second AI4theSciences call for applications which will start in May 2021.

The 23 PhD subjects available for applications

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