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PhD position in Computational (Combinatorial) Optimization

posted May 1, 2015, 7:02 AM by Dirk Oliver Theis
The Computer Science Institute of the University of Tartu, Estonia, is looking to fill a

PhD-Position in Computational Optimization.

The work environment is multi-national.  The language of instruction and communication is English.

The PhD project consists in developing a software for the solution of a certain type of constrained optimization problems, and to apply it to problems in neuro science and data mining (in Tartu).  Moreover, the candidate will apply discrete optimization in some other, short term projects.

The position also entails the following duties:

  • write down intermediate findings in papers for publication in conferences and/or journals;
  • teach 2h per term week (32 term weeks per year) in courses on algorithms and optimization.

The 4-year PhD program requires to complete a certain amount (60 ECTS) of course work.

The after tax monthly salary is 1100 Euros (34% above the average Estonian net income) in the 8 teaching months; 1000 Euros in the 4 non-teaching months.

The successful candidate will
  • have an excellent command of the English language (spoken & written);
  • have excellent coding skills in C/C++;
  • have good background in each of: Discrete Optimization, Linear Programming, Non-Linear Optimization;
  • hold a Masters degree (or equivalent), or be in the process of acquiring one.

Deadline for the formal online application is June 3rd (, but if you are interested, get in touch with your would-be supervisor as soon as possible:

Associate Professor
University of Tartu
dotheis [at] ut [dot] ee

See below for more information about Estonia, Tartu, the University of Tartu, and the CS institute.


Estonia is a Euro-zone country located directly south of Finland.  It has about 10% more average annual sunshine hours than Berlin, and 18% more than Cologne.  (It's because the sky's blue most of the time.)

Estonia is an ``E-Society'': Broadband Internet is fast and inexpensive or free, public WiFi is ubiquitous.  The country scores 1st in the world in Internet Freedom and 5th in Privacy.  It is ranked directly behind Germany in the ``State of the World's Children's Index'' (10th).  In the Human-Development index, it scores between the UK and Portugal.  See Wikipedia for these and other statistical facts.

Since most Estonians speak English, it is not necessary to learn Estonian.  The language is similar to Finnish and Hungarian.


Tartu is a picturesque city in southern Estonia.  Home to 17,000 students (in a population of 105,000), there are lots of inexpensive restaurants, bars, and cafés.

University of Tartu

Founded in 1632, ``Universitas Tartuensis'' is one of the most venerable centers of education and research in this part of the world.  In rankings, it is ranked in the top 400 universities world wide, with a rapid ascent over the recent years.

The CS institute

A significant number of the Computer Science institute faculty are expatriates, the ratio is even higher for PhD students.  Next to Combinatorial Optimization, which is part of Theoretical Computer Science, the strong subjects are Bioinformatics, Data Mining, Neuro Science, and Scientific Computing.