15 PhD positions for Early Stage Researchers as part of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network "DigitAlgaesation"

Dal 15.02.2021 al 13.03.2021

The DigitAlgaesation consortium:

The European Training Network DigitAlgaesation is a consortium of European Universities and Companies comprising:

  • University of Padova (Italy)
  • CentraleSupelec (France)
  • Imperial College London (United Kingdom)
  • INRIA (France)
  • Technical University of Denmark (Denmark)
  • Technical University of Dresden (Germany)
  • University of Almeria (Spain)
  • “G. W. Leibniz” University of Hannover (Germany)
  • Wageningen University (The Netherlands)
  • MINT Engineering (Germany)
  • Process Systems Enterprise – Siemens Digital Industry (United Kingdom)
  • Proviron (Belgium)
  • TMCI Padovan (Italy)

The DigitAlgaesation research and training programme:

Microalgae are photosynthetic microorganisms found in marine and freshwater environments.
Microalgae are attracting increasing global attention as a sustainable source of biomass that find potential application in many different fields like renewable energy, wastewater treatment, food, feed, biopharmaceuticals, and nutraceuticals.
However, many barriers remain, including a lack of digital and automation technologies supporting the sustainable deployment of large-scale cultivation systems.
The EU-funded DigitAlgaesation project is training early-stage researchers in multidisciplinary skills to enable the automation and optimisation of microalgae cultivation processes for more cost-effective and environmentally-friendly enhanced productivity.

Open ESR positions:

  • ESR 1: Assessment of light dynamics on growth performance and definition of model-based protocol for algae selection and genetic manipulation
  • ESR 2: Experimental and numerical investigation of culture systems involving complementary species for N2 fixation and extended solar radiation absorption
  • ESR 3: Development and experimental assessment of a modelling approach for nutrient-light interactions description and optimisation
  • ESR 4: Development and analysis of a digital twin for monitoring, control and optimisation applications in microalgae: the Microalgae Growth Model (MGM)
  • ESR 5: Advanced techniques for model-based experiment design under uncertainty
  • ESR 6: Development of a continuous micro-photobioreactor for rapid model identification
  • ESR 7: Microalgal population dynamics related to changes of environmental conditions
  • ESR 8: Development of an online monitoring system of culture fitness and stress-induced intracellular metabolite accumulation in microalgae
  • ESR 9: Sensor technology fusion for on-line monitoring and control
  • ESR 10: Data mining approaches for monitoring and decision support of PBR processes
  • ESR 11: Development of a deep-learning platform for process monitoring and optimisation
  • ESR 12: Microalgae high rate production by optimising biofilm-based system
  • ESR 13: Modelling and control of the photoacclimation response in an industrial environment
  • ESR 14: Modelling and control of microalgae bacteria consortia for wastewater treatment
  • ESR 15: Robust control of microalgae processes accounting for future meteorology

DigitAlgaesation ESRs will benefit from:

  • Outstanding training aimed at fostering scientific, technical and transferable skills
  • Secondments designed to exploit the complementarities between projects, sectors and expertise
  • Scientific advice from internationally recognized experts
  • A solid mentoring strategy and followed up through a personalized career development plan.


DigitAlgaesation is committed to offer equal opportunities and therefore seeks to recruit a gender balanced group of ESRs. It further aims to support Early Stage Researchers through a family friendly working environment. This is in line with benefits offered by the MSCA programme, which offers highly competitive and attractive salary and working conditions. Successful candidates will be offered a full-time position for a duration of 36 months and will be enrolled in local PhD training programmes. In accordance with the MSCA regulations for ESRs the salary includes the following elements:

  • Living allowance: basic, gross amount before taxation and compulsory deductions for contributions to social insurance schemes according to national law. The basic amount of the living allowance is EUR 3 270 per month. To ensure equal treatment and purchasing power parity, this amount is then adjusted through the application of a correction coefficient based on the country in which the ESR will be recruited.
  • Mobility allowance of EUR 600 per month
  • Family allowance of EUR 500 per month for ESRs who have a family (persons linked to the researcher by marriage or a relationship with equivalent status to a marriage recognized by the legislation of the country where this relationship was formalized or dependent children who are actually being maintained by the researcher) at the time of recruitment.

Eligibility criteria

  • Fulfillment of eligibility criteria dictated by the European Commission under the H2020 Marie Curie Innovative Training Network Programme: The candidate must not have resided or carried out their main activity in the country of his/her host organization for more than 12 months in the last 3 years immediately prior of the start of employment in this position.
  • Applicable degree: i.e. Master’s degree or equivalent related to the scope of the position awarded before first day of employment
  • Candidate must be in the first four years of their research careers and not yet have been awarded a doctoral degree -- In other words, candidate should have obtained a degree (i.e. Master’s or equivalent) which would formally entitle them to embark on a doctorate within the last 4 years

Additional comments

The COVID-19 outbreak has caused major disruptions for many researchers, projects and organizations, including those working with EU funding. In agreement with the European Commission, DigitAlgaesation may adopt a flexible approach to how mobility rules are applied, including remote working and online collaboration until travel and relocation become feasible.

Selection process

The DigitAlgaesation selection process will follow an equal-opportunities policy, paying careful attention to proper and fair management of all non-discrimination issues during the advertisement, recruitment, and project implementation. All Consortium members represent equal opportunity employers.

Shortlisted applicants will be interviewed via telephone or a teleconference system.

Applications are solely possible via the DigitAlgaesation application form, where further information is available:


Applications must be in English. Applicants may indicate up to 3 ESR Projects which they would like to work on.


The deadline for applications is 13.03.2021 at 23:00 pm (GET).

Applicants shortlisted for TC interviews will be notified by 30.04.2021.

All applicants will receive notifications about the results of the DigitAlgaesation selection procedure by 30.05.2021.

Individual projects will start between 01.09.2021 and 01.11.2021.