PhD in Astroparticle Physics


Program Description

The GSSI – Gran Sasso Science Institute, based in L’Aquila (Italy), offers 30 PhD scholarships in the following fields:

  • “Astroparticle Physics” (8 scholarships) 
  • “Mathematics in Natural, Social and Life Sciences” (8 scholarships)
  • “Computer Science” (7 scholarships)
  • “Regional Science and Economic Geography” (7 scholarships)

The official language of the PhD programmes is English. The fellowships are awarded for 4 years and their yearly amount is € 16,159.91 gross. All PhD students have free accommodation at the GSSI facilities and use of the canteen.

The application must be submitted through the online form available at by 11 June 2020, 5 pm (Italian time zone).

For more information, please consult the Call for Applications at or write an email to

Program Highlights

Astroparticle Physics (8 scholarships)

  • 7 scholarships;
  • 1 scholarship for the research project “Development of an high precision Time Projection Chamber with optical readout for directional Dark Matter searches”. The position is supported under the Grant Agreement n. 818744 (Call: ERC-2018-COG) “INITIUM – an Innovative Negative Ion Time projection chamber for Underground dark Matter searches” of the Horizon 2020 Framework Program. The student will perform data taking and data analysis, simulations and development of prototypes capable of measuring the direction of particle tracks, in the context of the INITIUM project. The student will take part in the installation, commissioning and data collection activities of a 1 m3 detector based on these principles in the Gran Sasso underground laboratories.

It is possible to apply both for INITIUM Project and for GSSI scholarships, by submitting two different applications.

The research and PhD in physics at the GSSI is focused on astroparticle physics. Astroparticle physics is an interdisciplinary and young research field, grown at the intersection of particle physics, nuclear physics, astrophysics and cosmology. It addresses some of the most pressing and fundamental questions in science today: the origin and the evolution of our universe, the nature of dark matter and dark energy, the study of neutrinos and of the ultimate constituents of matter, the search for gravitational waves, the investigation and explanation of the cosmic rays.

The main aim of the curriculum in Astroparticle Physics is to provide the entrance points and the scientific and cultural tools to participate successfully to the researches in particle physics, nuclear physics, and astrophysics, high energy astrophysics, gravitation, and cosmology. A special attention will be given to experimental and phenomenological aspects. Moreover, the PhD student in Astroparticle Physics at GSSI will have a special opportunity to follow and participate to the research conducted at the Gran Sasso National Laboratories (LNGS), with its wide community of scientists from all over the world.

The Astroparticle Physics curriculum consists of 4 years of study and research. The first year a wide choice of courses will cover a large spectrum of topics and the year will be concluded by a final exam. Students will work on a research project under the supervision of one or more teachers and scientists of the GSSI, of the INFN Gran Sasso National Laboratory and/or of the professors of the University of L'Aquila. Interdisciplinary approaches to the studies and research, exchanges of ideas and innovations are strongly encouraged.


Felix Aharonian (Max Planck and DIAS), Roberto Aloisio (GSSI), Francesco Arneodo (NYU Abu Dhabi), Pasquale Blasi (GSSI and INFN), Marica Branchesi (GSSI and INFN), Eugenio Coccia (GSSI), Fernando Ferroni (GSSI and INFN), Ivan De Mitri (Chair - GSSI and INFN), Crisitano Galbiati (GSSI and Princeton University), Jan Harms (GSSI and INFN), Teresa Montaruli (Universite de Genève), Angela Olinto (University of Chicago),Stefano Ragazzi (Università Milano Bicocca and INFN), Carlo Rubbia (GSSI and Max Planck), Francesco Vissani (LNGS and GSSI).

University profile

The GSSI – Gran Sasso Science Institute ( is an international PhD school and a center for research and higher education in the areas of Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science and Social Sciences. It was founded in 2012 in L’Aquila (Italy) as a Center for Advanced Studies of the INFN – National Institute for Nuclear Physics and then established in March 2016 as a School of Advanced Studies providing post-graduate education.

Through a day-to-day collaboration and interaction, researchers and students have the opportunity to build a sound knowledge of the research methods and to experiment contamination of interests, innovative approaches and multicultural exchanges in all the GSSI activities. In addressing the complexity of today’s world, we are committed to removing all barriers between the GSSI areas of study and research, where interdisciplinarity and cross-fertilization underlie everything we do. Among our goals are the dissemination of scientific results towards society and the promotion of cultural events for generic public, citizens and schools.

Last updated Mar 2020

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About the School

The Gran Sasso Science Institute (GSSI) is an international PhD school and a center for research and higher education.

The Gran Sasso Science Institute (GSSI) is an international PhD school and a center for research and higher education. Read less