University of Luxembourg

PhD position in Computational Linguistics/Sociolinguistics

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The University of Luxembourg is an international research university with a distinctly multilingual and interdisciplinary character. The University was founded in 2003 and counts more than 6,700 students and more than 2,000 employees from around the world. The University’s faculties and interdisciplinary centres focus on research in the areas of Computer Science and ICT Security, Materials Science, European and International Law, Finance and Financial Innovation, Education, Contemporary and Digital History. In addition, the University focuses on cross-disciplinary research in the areas of Data Modelling and Simulation as well as Health and System Biomedicine. Times Higher Education ranks the University of Luxembourg #3 worldwide for its “international outlook,” #20 in the Young University Ranking 2021 and among the top 250 universities worldwide. 

The Faculty of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences (FHSE) brings together expertise from the humanities, linguistics, cognitive sciences, social and educational sciences. People from across 20 disciplines are working within the Faculty. Along with the disciplinary approach a very ambitious interdisciplinary research culture has been developed.

The faculty’s research and teaching focuses on social, economic, political and educational issues with the common goal of contributing to an inclusive, open and resourceful society. The FHSE offers six Bachelor and twenty Master degrees and a doctoral school providing students with the necessary knowledge and high-qualified skills to succeed in their future career.

Your Role...

The doctoral candidate will be a member of the Department of Humanities. S/he will work under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Christoph Purschke. Specifically, the candidate will be part of the research project TRAVOLTA (“Tracing Attitudes and Variation in Online Luxembourgish Text Archives”) funded by the FNR Luxembourg. The project is located at the intersection of sociolinguistics and computational linguistics. Using digital texts from, it takes a close look at how Luxembourgish develops into a fully-fledged standard language in real time. Additionally, it analyses central topics in the public discussion about multilingualism by investigating the opinions expressed in user comments to news articles. In doing so, the project harnesses advanced methods from NLP and machine learning to describe the dynamics of public discourse and the central role of Luxembourgish in this regard.

Your tasks

  • Research in the field of Computational Linguistics/Sociolinguistics with a focus on attitudes & stances in written Luxembourgish
  • Develop concepts and methods (sociolinguistic analysis, NLP) for the detection and processing of stances in text data
  • Communicating with external partners
  • Publications (in peer-reviewed journals and at scientific conferences)
  • Enrolment in the Doctoral School in Humanities and Social Sciences

What we expect from you…

  • Excellent Master’s degree (or equivalent) in:
    • Either: Computational Linguistics, Computer Science, or a related field with prior experience in working with language data
    • Or: Sociolinguistics, Linguistics, or a related field with prior experience in data science applications (NLP, Python, r)
  • Involvement into teaching to a limited extent
  • Language skills: English and German (intermediate); Luxembourgish is considered as an asset
  • Enthusiasm about, high commitment to, and enjoyment in research and science

We offer...

  • Participation in a committed, and dynamically developing team
  • Excellent research and funding conditions on a personal and a research level at an international and multilingual university
  • Good and intensive supervision on a personal level
  • An excellent European network of researchers and international mobility in the context of the project

In Short...

  • Contract Type: Fixed Term Contract 36 Month - extendable up to 48 months if required
  • Work Hours: Full Time 40.0 Hours per Week
  • Foreseen starting date: Between April and September 2023
  • Location: Belval
  • Job Reference: UOL05442

The yearly gross salary for every PhD at the UL is EUR 38028 (full time)

How to apply...

Applications should be submitted online and include:

  • Curriculum Vitae (including your contact address, work experience, publications, as well as all other academic achievements)
  • Cover letter explaining your motivation
  • Diplomas and transcripts of your Bachelor and Master program

Early application is highly encouraged, as the applications will be processed upon reception. Please apply formally through the HR system. Applications by email will not be considered.

The University of Luxembourg embraces inclusion and diversity as key values. We are fully committed to removing any discriminatory barrier related to gender, and not only, in recruitment and career progression of our staff.

Here’s what awaits you at the University

  • Multilingual and international character. Modern institution with a personal atmosphere. Staff coming from 90 countries. Member of the “University of the Greater Region” (UniGR). 
  • A modern and dynamic university. High-quality equipment. Close ties to the business world and to the Luxembourg labour market. A unique urban site with excellent infrastructure.
  • A partner for society and industry. Cooperation with European institutions, innovative companies, the Financial Centre and with numerous non-academic partners such as ministries, local governments, associations, NGOs …
  • Find out more about the University
  • Addresses, maps & routes to the various sites of the University

Further information...

Please direct further questions to Prof. Dr. Christoph Purschke: / +352 46 66 44 9226


Job details

PhD position in Computational Linguistics/Sociolinguistics
2, avenue de I'Universite Belvaux, Luxembourg
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The University of Luxembourg, a small-sized institution with an international reach, aims at excellence in research and education.

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