PhD position on algebraic techniques for risk analysis under uncertainty

PhD position on algebraic techniques for risk analysis under uncertainty

Published Deadline Location
28 May 24 Jun Enschede

Job description

Do you want to do research on the intersection of mathematics and computer science, using algebra to create fast and widely applicable algorithms? We have the following offer:

The challenge
The safety and security threats faced by high-tech systems are assessed via mathematical risk models. As systems grow more complex, so do risk models, and developing model checking algorithms for fast and rigorous risk analysis is an important subfield of computer science.

Two prominent models are fault trees (for safety) and attack trees (for security). For these, existing algorithms are fast, but require all parameters to be known exactly. This can be a problem as precise data can be hard to obtain, especially in cybersecurity.

The aim of this PhD project is to develop new risk analysis model checking methods that can handle various types of uncertainty, such as random variables and fuzzy numbers. These algorithms will be rooted in polynomial algebra; your challenge is to exploit this algebraic structure to create fast algorithms. To make these algorithms as widely applicable as possible, you will develop a general algebraic framework to express different types of uncertainty in different metrics.

You will:
  • You will perform daily PhD-level research
  • Publish results in scientific workshops, conference proceedings, and journals, and present these at (inter)national workshops and conferences.
  • Contribute to teaching activities related to your work
  • Be a part of an excellent and internationally renowned research group.


University of Twente (UT)


  • You are proficient in English
  • You have, or will shortly acquire, a MSc in Mathematics or Computer Science
  • You have a thorough theoretical background, e.g. in formal methods
  • You have experience with at least one of the fields of algebra, model checking, uncertainty frameworks
  • You have excellent analytical and communication skills
  • Interested in teaching at university level

Conditions of employment

  • As a PhD candidate at UT, you will be appointed to a full-time position for four years, with a qualifier in the first year, within a very stimulating and exciting scientific environment;
  • The University offers a dynamic ecosystem with enthusiastic colleagues;
  • Your salary and associated conditions are in accordance with the collective labour agreement for Dutch universities (CAO-NU);
  • You will receive a gross monthly salary ranging from € 2.770,- (first year) to € 3.539,- (fourth year);
  • There are excellent benefits including a holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary, an end-of-year bonus of 8.3%, and a solid pension scheme;
  • A minimum of 232 leave hours in case of full-time employment based on a formal workweek of 38 hours. A full-time employment in practice means 40 hours a week, therefore resulting in 96 extra leave hours on an annual basis;
  • Free access to sports facilities on campus;
  • A family-friendly institution that offers parental leave (both paid and unpaid);
  • You will have a training programme as part of the Twente Graduate School where you and your supervisors will determine a plan for a suitable education and supervision;
  • We encourage a high degree of responsibility and independence, while collaborating with close colleagues, researchers and other staff.


The formal methods & tools group. The FMT group is part of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science (EEMCS) at the University of Twente. Our central goal is to develop formal techniques and tools to support the development of complex systems, and increase the reliability of the high-tech systems that we all rely on, both as individuals and as society.

Our group has an excellent scientific track record, performing high-quality research, leading to well-cited paper and prestigious grants and prizes.

As a group, we care about a good working atmosphere, diversity and a good work-life balance. We particularly encourage women and people from minority groups to apply.

Additional information

Are you interested in this position? Please send your application via the 'Apply now' button below before June 24, 2024, and include:
  • A cover letter (maximum 2 pages A4), emphasizing your specific interest, qualifications, motivations to apply for this position.
  • A Curriculum Vitae, including, if applicable, a list of publications and references.
  • A list of all courses with grades and a short description of your MSc thesis.

For more information regarding this position, you are welcome to contact Milan Lopuhaä-Zwakenberg (


  • PhD
  • Engineering
  • max. 40 hours per week
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • 1803


University of Twente (UT)

Learn more about this employer


Drienerlolaan 5, 7522NB, Enschede

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Application procedure

Application procedure

Make sure to apply no later than 24 Jun 2024 23:59 (Europe/Amsterdam).