20 Fully Funded PhD Positions in Helsinki

Deadline: 6 August 2015
Open to: current doctoral students of HICT supervisors or new ones who are willing to start their doctoral studies under one of HICT supervisors
Scholarship: depends on the stage of the doctoral studies and varies between 2,000 and 3,000 euros per month


The Helsinki Doctoral Education Network in Information and Communications Technology (HICT) is a collaborative doctoral education network hosted jointly by Aalto University and the University of Helsinki, the two leading universities within this area in Finland. The activities of HICT are structured along five research area specific tracks:

  • Algorithms and machine learning;
  • Life science informatics;
  • Networks, networked systems and services;
  • Software and service engineering and systems;
  • User centered and creative technologies.

The participating units of HICT have currently 20 fully funded positions available for exceptionally qualified doctoral students. The purpose of the call is to evaluate the candidates so that the participating units can then offer the funding to the most successful applicants. The grants cover full-time employment in one of the participating units for the remaining duration of the doctoral studies, and the maximum extent of full-time doctoral studies is four years.

The exact starting date can be negotiated between the student and the supervisor, but the recommendation is to start in January 2016. The student must have completed his/her M.Sc. degree before HICT funding commences. New students also need to go through the standard doctoral student enrollment process of the hosting university/school before the start of the funding period. The supervisors will help in this process, once the best candidates have been identified and linked to a supervisor.


To be eligible for grants you must be:

  • Current doctoral students of HICT supervisors (see list HERE);
  • Potential new doctoral students who are willing to start their doctoral studies under one of the supervisors participating in the call (see list HERE) by the beginning of the funding period.


The exact amount of monthly salary depends on the stage of the doctoral studies and varies between 2,000 and 3,000 euros per month. The level of the salary is sufficient for a funded student to focus on his/her doctoral studies full-time, without need to resort to other sources of income. Funded doctoral students are typically hired as full-time employees for the duration of their doctoral studies. The contract includes the normal occupational health benefits of the employing university, and Finland has a comprehensive social security system.

 The annual total workload of research and teaching staff at Finnish universities is 1600 hours. In addition to doctoral studies, persons hired are expected to participate in the supervision of students and teaching following the standard practices of the recruiting unit.

How to apply?

The deadline for applications is 6 August 2015. For successful application please log in and fill the application form HERE. Following material is required as a compulsory information/attachments (all text documents to be provided in pdf):

  • Motivation letter;
    • For current students, it is sufficient to identify the supervisor and briefly explain the present status of the studies.
    • Please do not contact the potential supervisors directly, but spend your efforts in making your motivation letter as convincing as possible, so that one of the potential supervisors gets interested. If you have arguments concerning your application, do not send them by email, but state them in the motivation letter.
  • For potential new students, the background and future plans of the student, and in particular the reasons for selecting the three potential supervisors (you can get more information on the participating supervisors through their web pages);
  • For new students: a ranked list of three potential supervisors from the list of participating supervisors (see HERE);
  • A study transcript provided by the applicant’s university that lists studies completed and grades achieved by the end of June 2015;
  • A copy of the M.Sc. degree certificate. If the degree is still pending, then a plan for its completion must be provided. The degree must be completed by the time HICT funding commences;
  • A copy of passport or ID card;
  • A complete curriculum vitae, describing education and employment history.

Following material is optional:

  • Names, positions, affiliations and e-mail addresses of at most 3 senior academic people available for providing recommendation letters upon request from HICT. HICT will contact you and recommenders separately afterwards, if and when recommendation letters are required;
  • Copy of English language proficiency certificate (TOEFL, IELTS, CAE/CPE). The universities participating in HICT have strict language skills requirements for doctoral students (Aalto University, University of Helsinki). These must be satisfied in order to be enrolled as a doctoral student, and while the language proficiency certificate is optional at the first application stage, it will be required from the applicants who continue into later stages.

For more information please visit the official website.

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