PhD position on personal data on the Web

Application deadline: 2021-09-30 or until the vacancy is filled
Type of contract: Full-time
Employment: Temporary (4 years), with yearly progress evaluation
Starting date: As soon as possible

We especially encourage applications by candidates from diverse groups; all are welcome in our team.

Job description

More than a decade of Big Data thinking has shown that there are no technological limits to how much data we can store in one place. Simultaneously, it has uncovered all the economical, societal, and ethical limitations inherent to such unprecedented centralization of data. The Solid project ( tackles these issues by giving people back control over their own data, thereby re-enabling data-driven innovation.

Are you passionate about the Web and interested in working on decentralized knowledge graph technologies? Join our team to work on the next phase of the Web! Under the supervision of prof. Ruben Verborgh, expert in Solid and decentralized data, you can contribute to the Solid ecosystem by tackling some of the most pressing challenges, such as interoperability, scalability, and developer experience.

Read more about our work on Solid here:

Your profile

  • Degree: Master’s degree in Computer Science, Engineering, Informatics, ICT or related field
  • Advanced programming skills in at least 1 major programming language
  • Passionate about Web technology
  • Fluent in English, spoken and written
  • Self-directed and able to perform independent work
  • Enthusiastic about working in a research environment

The Knowledge on Web-Scale team at Ghent University – imec

The Knowledge on Web-Scale team ( at Ghent University – imec is renowned for its creative research on Knowledge Graphs on the Web. We apply these techniques on open data, shared data, and personal data in a wide range of application domains such as mobility, digital heritage, scholarly communication, sensor data, governmental base registries, building data, e-health, and logistics.

Our team is part of IDLab ( within Ghent University (, a top-100 university worldwide, located in the heart of Belgium. IDLab is a core research group of imec (, a world-leading research and innovation hub in digital technologies and nanoelectronics. IDLab employs over 300 researchers working on fundamental and applied research on data science and internet technology.

Our offer

You receive the opportunity to perform full-time research in a highly international and friendly working environment, with a competitive salary. Grounded in fundamental academic research, as a PhD candidate you will also participate in collaborative research with industrial and academic partners in Flanders and on a wider geographic scale in new and ongoing projects. You will publish your research results at major international conferences and in journal papers.


Send your application by email or any questions concerning this vacancy to Pieter Colpaert and Ruben Verborgh, indicating "Job application: PhD position on personal data on the Web" in the subject. Applications should include

  1. an academic/professional resume,
  2. a personal motivation letter, and
  3. transcripts of study results

After screening, selected candidates will be invited for an online interview as a first contact in a multi-stage selection process.