Max Planck ETH Center PhD Fellowship for International students in Germany, 2019

Application Deadline: November 12, 2018

The Max Planck ETH Center for Learning Systems (CLS) is offering PhD fellowship programme to international applicants.


The Max Planck ETH Center for Learning Systems (CLS) is a joint research center of ETH Zurich and the Max Planck Society. The Center’s mission is to pursue research in the design and analysis of learning systems, synthetic or natural. This initiative brings together more than 40 professors and senior researchers in the fields of machine learning, perception, robotics on large and small scales, as well as neuroscience. The CLS offers a wide range of activities like retreats, workshops, and summer schools as well as a unique fellowship program, where PhD students are co-supervised by one advisor from ETH Zurich and one advisor from the MPI for Intelligent Systems in Tübingen and Stuttgart, respectively

Degree Level: Fellowship to pursue a PhD programme


Applications are encouraged from candidates with a keen interest in doing basic research in areas like:

  • Machine Learning and Empirical Inference of Complex Systems
  • Machine Intelligence, including Machine Vision and Natural Language Understanding
  • Perception-Action-Cycle for Autonomous Systems
  • Robust Model-Based Control for Intelligent Behavior
  • Robust Perception in Complex Environments
  • Design, Fabrication, and Control of Synthetic, Bio-Inspired, and Bio-Hybrid Micro/Nanoscale Robotic Systems
  • Haptic Intelligence
  • Data-Driven Computational Biology
  • Neurotechnology and Emergent Intelligence in Nervous Systems

Place of Study: Germany

Number of Scholarships: Not given


The duration of the CLS PhD Fellowship is initially three years. For fellows with good progress it can be extended for maximal one year to complete the PhD thesis (decision to be taken by the CLS Steering Board, without additional interviews). CLS PhD fellowships will be remunerated according to the rules of the Max-PlanckSociety and ETH Zurich, respectively. The corresponding guidelines for doctoral education apply. The CLS will pay for a part of the position, which is matched by the host lab at the Max-Planck-Society and ETH Zurich, respectively.

Eligible Countries: International students


Candidates are expected to have a completed master’s degree in computer science, physics, engineering, applied mathematics, materials science, neuroscience or other relevant fields as well as an excellent track record and must meet the general admission requirements for a doctorate at ETH Zurich (available at


Applications must be submitted through and need to include:

  • a complete CV including a list of publications, invited talks and awards (if applicable)
  • a short letter of motivation (1-2 pages) outlining the research area of the candidate
  •  scanned transcripts of certificates (bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, other degrees)
  •  2-3 reference letters to be sent directly per email to the CLS Executive Office within the application deadline.




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