[Comp-neuro] PhD Position in Brain-Inspired Computing (Theory)

Mihai A. Petrovici mpedro at kip.uni-heidelberg.de
Fri Jul 25 14:49:01 CEST 2014

      The Kirchhoff-Institut für Physik at the 
Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg (Germany) has an immediate opening 
for a

*    PhD Position in Brain-Inspired Computing (Theory)*

     The position is located in the Electronic Vision(s) Lab of Prof. 
Karlheinz Meier. The group develops large-scale hardware for 
brain-inspired computing and investigates novel theoretical paradigms of 
neural computation.

     The Heidelberg group works on the development of brain-inspired 
electronic circuits, so-called neuromorphic systems. These systems 
implement physical models of neurons and synapses in-silico, with fully 
configurable parameters and connectivity. Throughout a series of 
international projects, the hardware systems have evolved from single 
chips to wafer-scale devices with hundreds of thousands of neurons 
(Schemmel et al., 2010) and are planned to be further scaled up in the 
framework of the EU Human Brain project (HBP). The configurability of 
these systems fosters their use as general-purpose emulation devices for 
neuroscientific research (Pfeil et al., 2013). Their intrinsic 
parallelism, low power consumption and high acceleration sets them apart 
from conventional computing architectures. The heterogeneity of 
neuromorphic substrates requires novel theoretical approaches (Petrovici 
et al., 2014). The Heidelberg group is also involved in theoretical 
research and modeling of spike-based computational principles. In 
particular, the use of stochasticity for Bayesian inference is a major 
focus. These models provide useful architectures for machine learning, 
while at the same time advancing the study of possible computational 
paradigms in the mammalian neocortex (Petrovici et al., 2013).

     The successful candidate will join the theory and modeling section 
of the group in developing new stochastic models that exploit the 
heterogeneity of the hardware substrate, thereby benefitting from its 
significant speed advantage over conventional simulators.


     Candidates are expected to hold a Masters degree or equivalent in 
Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science or a related discipline. 
Knowledge in neuroscience is not required but would be an advantage. The 
candidates should have a deep interest in theoretical and computational 
neuroscience, as well as excellent mathematical abilities. An important 
part of their work will consist in acquiring new skills from various 
fields of neuroscience, as required by the interdisciplinary nature of 
the research topic. The successful candidates will use complex 
simulation software and are therefore required to have very good 
programming skills.


     Applications should addressed to Prof. Karlheinz Meier 
(meierk at kip.uni-heidelberg.de) and Mihai Petrovici 
(mpedro at kip.uni-heidelberg.de) including the following information in a 
single pdf-file :

     - Statement of research
     - CV
     - Two names (with email addresses) of suggested referees
     - Copies of university degrees and additional certificates
     - URLs of master /diploma) thesis and related publications

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