PhD in Computer Science and Systems Engineering


Program Description


2019/20 PhD programs at the IMT School for Advanced Studies Lucca

Deadline for applications –July 10th 2020, 12 pm CEST

Applications are now being accepted for the 20120/21 PhD Programs at the IMT School for Advanced Studies Lucca (, one of the six Schools of Excellence in Italy and one of the highest rated graduate schools in Europe according to the U-Multirank survey.

Highly motivated candidates from all disciplines are invited to apply for one of the 33 fully-funded four-year scholarships within two doctoral Programs that integrate scientific competences of economics, engineering, computer science, neuroscience and behavioral psychology, physics, applied mathematics, statistics, history and sciences of cultural heritage.

The track in Computer Science and Systems Engineering provides the doctoral student with a solid interdisciplinary background to analyze cyber-physical systems and develop solutions for a variety of complex engineering problems. It offers three research areas of specialization:

Research in computer science deals with the development of languages, models, algorithms, and verification methods for modern distributed systems. The focus is on cutting-edge research on adaptive systems, automated verification, cloud computing, computational methods in natural sciences, cyber security, dynamical systems, mobile systems, and performance evaluation.

Research in control systems focuses on optimization-based control of dynamical systems. The emphasis is on real-time embedded optimization algorithms for model predictive control of linear, nonlinear, stochastic, distributed, and large-scale dynamical systems, on learning dynamical models and controllers from data, and on applications to problems of practical interest, such as those arising from the automotive industry.

Research in computational mechanics is concerned with the development of computational methods to study advanced problems of solid mechanics and fluid mechanics for the characterization, simulation and prototyping of materials and structures. The approach pursues an original integration of methodologies belonging to mechanics, numerical analysis, materials science, and applied chemistry, in order to advance on the fundamental issues of sustainability, durability and reliability of materials. Experimental facilities for materials testing in the MUSAM-Lab will complement the research on computational methods.

The program of studies is based on a set of common courses, covering the fundamentals of numerical linear algebra and numerical methods for differential equations, computer programming, dynamical systems and control, numerical optimization, stochastic processes, and machine learning. These are followed by a number of advanced courses and research seminars related to the different specializations.

PhD candidates in the track in Computer Science and Systems Engineering are encouraged to carry out their research within the Research Units SYSMA (computer science), DYSCO (control systems), and MUSAM (computational mechanics). A selection of suggested PhD topics is available here. PhD candidates are however welcome to propose a research topic of their own that is aligned with the School’s main competences and interests.

Faculty and staff create a strong network that provides key guidance and support throughout the PhD program and allows students to reach the highest levels of scholarly achievement. Most IMT School PhD Graduates have secured prominent roles in academics, governmental institutions, public and private companies or professions across the globe.

All students are based in the recently restored San Francesco complex, a fully integrated Campus in the historical center of the beautiful Tuscan city of Lucca. The Campus includes renewed residential facilities, an on-site canteen, study and living rooms, a state-of-the-art library and outdoor recreational spaces, which foster a unique cultural, professional and social environment for our doctoral program. Eligible students, in addition to free room and board, will also receive a research scholarship which amounts to approximately €15,300/year. The scholarships are fully-funded for up to four years, with a possibility of graduating after the third year.

The PhD program at the IMT School attracts students from around the world, providing a truly international environment. English is the official language of the School. Moreover, all students will have the opportunity to spend periods abroad at research institutes, laboratories or universities, both within the Erasmus+ framework and through ad hoc mobility agreements.

To find out more about the School, the admission requirements and how to apply, please see

Deadline for applications – July 10th 2020, 12 pm CEST

Last updated Apr 2020

About the School

IMT School for Advanced Studies Lucca is a public graduate school and research institute that focuses on the analysis of economic, societal, technological and cultural systems.

IMT School for Advanced Studies Lucca is a public graduate school and research institute that focuses on the analysis of economic, societal, technological and cultural systems. Read less