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Phd Student

IMDEA Networks Institute is a networking research institute whose multinational team is engaged in cutting-edge fundamental science. As a growing, English-speaking institute located in Madrid, Spain, IMDEA Networks offers a unique opportunity for pioneering scientists to develop their ideas. IMDEA Networks is establishing itself internationally at the forefront in the “development of future network technologies and has already incorporated highly-reputed scientists (see our research team here). Our researchers share the potential to shape the future of networking science over the coming years.

Further information regarding our areas of research can be found here.

We bring together a large number of scientists performing research in fields very closely related to computer networks, to an extent that is unique in Europe. At the Institute, and teamed up with University Carlos III of Madrid (UC3M), researchers understand each other, are driven by common interests and are therefore able to collaborate in depth on leading-edge technical challenges.

Our PhD Student positions offer talented, aspiring researchers a salaried position in our research team for up to five years. Candidates offered a position as IMDEA Networks PhD Students will have been pre-vetted and conditionally accepted for a place on the Ph.D. program at UC3M or another top university in Madrid*.

* Please be aware that IMDEA Networks does not issue degrees and that, in most cases, as a UC3M PhD candidate you will be required to complete at least one year of master's courses, even if you already hold a master's degree. (Other universities may apply different criteria.)

Requirements, benefits and career development

PhD Student - Your career choice

Graduates applying for this position should have the following attributes

  • B.Sc., M.Sc. or equivalent in Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Telecommunications, Telematics or a related field (concluded by the time you join)*
  • Excellent academic transcripts
  • Clearly defined Statement of Purpose for Ph.D. research thesis
  • Excellent level of spoken and written English (please note: Spanish is not required)
  • Highly motivated

Successful candidates will enjoy the following benefits

  • Freedom to focus on your research work, with full administrative support. No teaching duties
  • Collaboration with leading experts on international research projects
  • Supervision throughout your Ph.D. by one of our world-renowned and award-winning researchers (see Research team).
  • Use of state-of-the-art resources and facilities
  • Collaborative, multi-cultural and English-speaking environment
  • Participation at international conferences and project meetings
  • Assistance with all aspects of immigration and relocation (including support with your VISA application)
  • Support to take innovations to market
  • Salaried position for up to 5 years *
  • Access to comprehensive healthcare
  • Total combined value of financial package of more than 150,000 Euros over five years
  • More information about the University Carlos III of Madrid Ph.D program

* UC3M Admission levels

We finance PhD Student's Ph.D. studies for between 4 and 5 years:

  • You will be funded for up to 4 years if you are admitted directly to the 1st year of the UC3M PhD Program
  • up to 4 and a half years if you are also undertaking a full UC3M Masters Program,
  • and you may be able to obtain an additional extension of up to 6 months.

Career path

After obtaining their Ph.D., our graduates are expected to find jobs in research organizations (including academia) and industry, for instance, amongst the members of our Former Team. We help our PhD Students in their search for employment after graduation.

How to apply for PhD positions

We have PhD positions for specific topics or projects, as well as positions where the research topic is not pre-defined at the time of the call. If your background and interests match one or two of the positions below, please enter the name of the corresponding supervisor(s) as “Preferred Ph.D. supervisor” in the section “Research interests and statement of purpose” of the application form. If you do not have a preference as to the PhD topic, leave this field empty.

Find more information about these openings on the following links:

PhD Position [NETCOM Lab] – Supervisor: Dr. Arturo AZCORRA

We are inviting applications for a PhD student position to work under the supervision of Dr. Arturo Azcorra as part of the NETCOM Lab.

Mandatory skills

  • Experience with advanced programing in Java
  • Experience with development of scripts and programs in Python
  • Knowledge and Experience with Linux systems
  • Knowledge and Experience of IP routing and L2 switching, and associated protocols

Optional, but desirable skills

We will evaluate very positively the experience or knowledge on one or more of the following technologies:

  • Cloud platforms (AWS, AZURE, Google Cloud, Openstack, Kubernetes), including their corresponding automation tools
  • Automation: knowledge on tools and platforms such Chef, Puppet or Ansible.
  • Virtualization: administration and deployment of virtualization elements: virtual machines, containers (LXC y/o Docker) and virtual networks in Linux.
  • 5G systems and MEC environments
  • Cloud robotics
  • Robotic Operation System v2
  • Real-time programming
  • Advanced knowledge of Linux (Ubuntu/Centos), including its networks management tools, interface configuration and network services
  • Networks: knowledge on the architecture of corporate networks and the following protocols: ARP, NDP, IPv4, IPv6, DHCP, DNS, GRE, VxLAN, IPsec y BGP.


You will benefit from working in TELCARIA, a technology startup with over four years of experience. We are looking for brilliant engineers with the ambition to grow together with the company, building at the same time solid knowledge and experience in SDN, NFV and virtualized network environments. In our offices, easily accessible by public transport and located near University Carlos III of Madrid in Leganés (Madrid), we offer a flexible work schedule and negotiable teleworking days. We also offer highly competitive salaries and work with a certain degree of independence, have responsibility in decision-making and there is a highly innovative and technological component to our work.

PhD Position in Mobile Network Communications [NETCOM Lab] – Supervisor: Dr. Albert BANCHS

The NETCOM Lab led invites applications for a PhD Student position in Mobile Network Communications. The student will work on advanced mobile network technologies, participating on EU projects and industry collaborations, involving the following topics and tasks:

  • Design and implementation of mobile network algorithms and protocols
  • Resource allocation models and algorithms
  • Network slicing, virtualization and orchestration technologies
  • 5G and Beyond 5G mobile network architectures
  • Performance analysis and experimental evaluation of wireless systems


  • Degree in electrical engineering, telecommunication engineering, computer science, telematics engineering, or equivalent disciplines
  • Proficiency in English is mandatory
  • Excellent academic transcripts
  • Solid background in networking and mobile communications
  • High motivation to conduce a PhD in the area of mobile networking

The selected student will be supervised by Dr. Albert Banchs.

PhD Position in millimeter wave device localization and location-based network optimization [Ubiquitous Wireless Networking Group] – Supervisor: Dr. Paolo CASARI

The Ubiquitous Wireless Networking Group invites applications for a PhD Student position in the areas of millimeter-wave (mmWave) localization, context information inference, and network optimization. The student will develop algorithms for high accuracy wireless location estimation and environment mapping by exploiting the orders-of-magnitude higher location accuracy that can be achieved thanks to mmWave communications. These algorithms will have to be designed with zero initial information, i.e., assuming that neither base station positions nor the floor plan are known.

The design of the location mechanisms will be adapted to the hardware capabilities, including both low-complexity algorithms that can operate on inexpensive/constrained hardware (e.g., sensor devices for industrial applications) and algorithms designed for high-end systems such as base stations. In either case, special attention will be given to low-overhead schemes that leverage the information gathered as part of the normal operation of the communication devices, such as angle difference of arrival (ADoA) information derived from the output of the beam training and tracking operations. The system will be extended towards simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) by detecting multipath components reflected off walls and obstacles.

Supervisor: Dr. Paolo Casari (co-supervised with Dr. Joerg Widmer).

Mandatory skills for this position

  • Excellent degree in electrical engineering, telecommunications engineering or equivalent disciplines
  • Proficiency in both written and spoken English
  • Solid background in signal processing, array processing, and wireless networking
  • Hands-on experience with experimental work
  • Knowledge of a scripting-based programming language (MATLAB, Python, ...)

Other desirable skills

  • Previous experience in research
  • Hands-on experience with embedded systems
  • Working knowledge of C/C++

PhD Position in 5G localization [Pervasive Wireless Systems Group] – Supervisor: Dr. Domenico GIUSTINIANO

The Pervasive Wireless Systems Research Group led by Dr. Domenico Giustiniano invites applications for a PhD Student position in in 5G localization. The goal of the research project is to leverage 5G technologies for accurate and low-latency positioning systems, participating on international projects and industry collaborations.

Supervisor: Dr. Domenico Giustiniano.

Skills required for this position

  • We expect an excellent degree in electrical engineering, telecommunication engineering or equivalent disciplines
  • Proficiency in English is mandatory
  • Solid background in wireless communication, and signal processing
  • Hands-on experience with experimental work

PhD Position in Content Caching and Machine Learning [NetEcon Group] – Supervisor: Dr. Sergey GORINSKY

The Network Economics (NetEcon) Group led by Dr. Sergey Gorinsky solicits applications for a PhD Student position at the intersection of content caching and machine learning. The student will contribute to the project that enables Internet content delivery with ultra-low latency via a large hierarchical system of distributed cache servers. The research will involve development and application of machine-learning techniques such as reinforcement learning. The student will work on feature design, model training, trace-driven evaluation against state-of-the-art heuristics, and implementation of algorithms for placement and management of cache servers.

An ideal applicant has the following profile

  • Master's degree in computer science or a related field
  • Excellent academic transcripts
  • Strong command of verbal and written English
  • Solid background in mathematics, algorithm design, machine learning, and hands-on programming
  • Passionate interest in a lifelong research career.

This selection process places an explicit priority on improving gender balance in science and technology. Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

The selected student will be supervised by Dr. Sergey Gorinsky.

PhD Position on the Economics of Personal Data – Supervisor: Dr. Nikolaos LAOUTARIS

Most of the web that we know operates under a “free-service in exchange for collecting your personal data” business model. The aim of this PhD position is to study, develop, and demonstrate alternative “human-centric” economics models in which end users may negotiate, retract, and receive (micro)payments for granting access to their personal data. The work will include both theoretical questions, such as: “How to define the value of personal data?”, “How to split it in a multilateral value chain?”, as well as practical ones, such as: “How to implement such an economy over existing web technologies and frameworks?”, “How to validate its properties using real data in a realistic setting?”.


  • Degree in Computer Science or related field.
  • Strong background in algorithms, big data, machine learning, and information theory.
  • Some background on economics.
  • Strong programming and data analysis skills using recent technologies and frameworks.

Related pointers

  • J. Lanier, “Who owns the future?”: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Who_Owns_the_Future%3F
  • Carrascal et al., “Your browsing behavior for a big mac: economics of personal information online,” WWW’13. [pdf]
  • Papadopoulos et al., “If you are not paying for it, you are the product: How much do advertisers pay to reach you?”, ACM IMC’17. [pdf]
  • “An emerging offer of personal information management services". Current state of service offers and challenges. DG CONNECT. [pdf]

The selected student will be supervised by Dr. Nikolaos Laoutaris.

Application information



To give an example of the competitiveness of our recruitment process, please be aware that we usually open around 10 slots per year and accept less than 5% of applicants.

Candidates would be well advised to submit their applications for evaluation at the earliest opportunity ahead of the deadline.

Key Dates in “PhD Student positions 2019” Application Process

  • 01 June 2019 – Call open
  • 31 July 2019 (14:00 CET) or as soon as the position is filled – Deadline for receipt of applications

Other opportunities

Funded PhD Student position with the NETCOM Telematics research group at University Carlos III of Madrid.