The PhD curriculum in Theory and Simulation of Condensed Matter is suited to highly motivated students interested in learning how the microscopic constituents of matters self- assemble to bring about the whole complexity of the states of matter, from molecules to complex solids, and in learning how to model fascinating macroscopic phenomena, from friction to superconductivity and superfluidity, emerging from the collective behaviour of those microscopic agents.

During the first year of their PhD course, students acquire the most advanced tools for modelling and studying states of matter, from ab-initio simulation of real materials and molecules to quantum simulation of lattice models, from the classical statistical theory of many-body systems to its quantum counterpart, and acquaint themselves with the broad research activity carried out at SISSA through more focused and topical courses. This preliminary stage provides students with a common background and all the information they need to decide on the research topic they intend to pursue in their PhD thesis.

The following 2 or 3 years of the PhD programme are devoted to individual research under the guidance of supervisors. Annual progress reports will ensure the timely detection and solution of possible difficulties.

The DEMOCRITOS Simulation Centre belonging to the Istituto Officina dei Materiali (IOM) part of the National Council for Research (CNR), and hosted by SISSA, is fully integrated into the research activity of the Condensed Matter group. Strong links are also maintained with scientists of the nearby Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) and Elettra Synchrotron Radiation Facility.

The most recent placements after PhD at SISSA:

  • ETH Zürich, Switzerland
  • École Polytechnique, Palaiseau, France
  • Riken AICS, Tokyo, Japan
  • Cantoblanco University, Madrid, Spain
  • KITP, Santa Barbara, USA
  • Rutgers University, USA
  • École Polytechnique Fédérale, Lausanne, Switzerland


Every year the Condensed Matter group selects students to attend a Ph.D. programme. The students are selected through a competition based on academic qualifications and an interview held in Trieste (or via Skype/video conference for candidates who can not reach Trieste).

Usually, there are two calls per years, approximatively in March and September. Detailed application deadlines, dates and number of available positions of the entrance examinations are periodically posted on the PhD announcements webpage, where you can also download the application forms.

Enrollment of all the new students at SISSA and the beginning of classes in the Theory and Numerical Simulation of Condensed Matter Curriculum will take place in the first week of November.

Program taught in:
  • English

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This course is Campus based
Start Date
Oct 2019
3 - 4 years
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Start Date
Oct 2019
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Oct 2019

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