Call for a PhD position

The group of Quantum Foundations and Quantum Information Theory at the Vienna Institute for Quantum Optics and Quantum Information (IQOQI) is offering a PhD position in the framework of the interdisciplinary project Quantum probabilities and objectivity: New pragmatist insights”.

The project is a collaboration between the Austrian Academy of Sciences of which the IQOQI is part (coordinator Caslav Brukner) and the Department of Philosophy of the Ecole Normale Supérieure of Paris (coordinator Michel Bibtol). It is funded by the French Agence Nationale de la Recherche and the Austrian Fonds zur Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung.

The project’s aim is to investigate new approaches to the ‘operational reconstruction’ of quantum mechanics based on the logical analysis of the status and role of the observer. The student is expected in particular to explore the possibility of exploiting recently proposed ‘inferentialist’ theories of objectivity in order to provide a rational justification of some structural features of quantum probabilities and analyze possible generalizations.

The call is open to students who plan to complete a PhD in theoretical physics. However, applications are invited from candidates trained in any relevant discipline: mathematics, statistics, logic, computer science…. The sole requirement is that the student should have strong technical skills in her/his area of specialization as well as a genuine interest in the foundations of probability, logic and/or quantum mechanics. 

Candidates should have an outstanding academic record and they should have completed a master’s degree, preferably a two-year research master or equivalent, by 1 October 2017.

The budget of the ANR-FWF project covers two years of a full salary for a PhD student in Vienna. For the remaining 12-24 months, an additional source of funding is to be envisioned. Candidates are accordingly encouraged to apply for an individual fellowship (e.g., from the Austrian Academy of Science (DOC program)).

The application should be sent to stefano.osnaghi(at)gmail.com by the 30 July 2017 and it should include:

  • a letter of motivation (1 to 2 pages), explaining in particular the candidate’s reasons for participating in the project.
  • a CV, including a list of publications (if applicable).
  • A copy of the candidate’s publications or a writing sample, such as a paper or part of a master’s thesis.
  • Two letters of recommendation. The letters should directly be sent to the above email address by academic referees having worked with the candidate.

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for an interview. The final decision will be communicated by the end of August. The suggested starting date is October 2017. For more information about the project and the application do not hesitate to contact us at the above email address.