Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

Early Stage Researcher position available at UPC, Barcelona, Spain in H2021 EID project MENTOR - Machine LEarning in optical NeTwORks (ESR5)

    Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC)
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    30/04/2021 23:00 - Europe/Brussels
    Spain › Barcelona
    H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions


The Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC), is seeking to appoint a position for an Early Stage Researcher (ESR) to join the Marie Skłodowska-Curie European Industrial Doctorate Network on MENTOR.

Position: Distributed intelligence for the performance degradation detection at optical layer

Location: Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya (UPC), Barcelona, Spain with a secondment to Telecom Italia, Italy, and Infinera Germany.

Working time: Full time (36.5 hours per week)

Duration: Fixed-Term (3 years)

Starting: September 2021 or soon thereafter

Salary: In accordance with the Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions rules.

The successful candidate will be enrolled at UPC for a PhD. This MENTOR position includes a Fully Funded PhD Studentships, i.e., a fee bursary to fully cover the home/EU PhD tuition fees.


Project description

MENTOR - Machine LEarning in optical NeTwORks.

This project focuses on the development of techniques for collaborative intelligence applied to the detection of performance degradation of optical connections and the identification of the root cause. The project is structure around three sub-objectives: (1) monitoring data generation correlated to the degradation of optical devices. (2) designing distributed AI/ML algorithms for the detection of degradation and the identification of the cause. The performance of the algorithms will be compared with that of centralized algorithms. (3) study methods and approaches for knowledge sharing among the collaborative algorithms deployed in the node agents; and (4) study different approaches for the coordination between the agents and the centralized controller.

From the industry perspectives, design of practical and implementable processing algorithms requires knowledge of real-world conditions and restrictions. The multi-national & multi-interdisciplinary MENTOR project provides timely doctoral training for PhD students through industry, over relevant research in the fast-growing area of high practical relevance. MENTOR involves leading EU university, two global operator and one of the most innovative vendors. This will lead to development of novel practically implementable disruptive techniques for fibre-optic communications.

MENTOR is a European Industrial Doctorate (EID) consortium of high profile partners in the United Kingdom, Denmark, Italy, Spain, France, Portugal and Germany including academic partners Aston University, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna and Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, as well as, industrial partners Infinera (Germany and Portugal), Orange Labs, and Telecom Italia. It is funded by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network (ITN).

Within MENTOR doctoral training will be provided to six Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) to design the next generation of high-capacity optical networks. MENTOR aims to bring this exciting new approach into commercial application with the help of its world leading industry partner, Infinera, and two global operators, Orange and Telecom Italia, where successful applicants will spent 18 months of their appointment.



More Information



The successful candidates will be employed on a full-time basis with a competitive salary in accordance with the MSCA rules and the personal circumstances of the applicant. The successful candidate will receive a financial package consisting of MSCA living allowance and mobility allowance. Eligible applicants with a family will also receive an additional family allowance according to the rules of the MSCA. The exact (net) salary will be confirmed upon appointment and will depend on a Host Institution's local tax regulations.

Family-friendly working conditions

Female applicants and applicants wishing to return to research after a period of absence are especially encouraged to apply. Local adverts will detail family-friendly working conditions such as childcare facilities if available.

Eligibility criteria

MSCA Eligibility

Applicants must at the first day of their MENTOR employment contract, be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research career and have not been awarded a doctoral degree. This research experience is measured FROM the date when they obtain the degree which formally entitles them to embark on a doctorate (either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the researcher is recruited, even if a doctorate was never started or envisaged). Research Experience is measured TO the first day of the MENTOR  employment contract of the researcher.


MSCA Mobility:

At the core of the MSCA-ITNs is researcher mobility. At the time of commencing their employment, researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of their (recruiting) host organisation for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to their recruitment. Short stays, such as holidays, are not taken into account.

Usual MSCA Eligibility Criteria apply and will be verified during the application process. For further information on MSCA, please see: http://ec.europa.eu/mariecurieactions.

Selection process

The general guidance for applicants: The ESR positions will also be advertised locally at the respective institutions and local recruitment sites. These local/individual advertisements will have further details including local PhD admission criteria and application deadlines.

To apply, please send your CV, a cover letter and supporting documents by email to the main supervisor of the position Luis Velasco at this e-mail: luis.velasco@upc.edu

Additional comments

The MENTOR Fellowship includes a bursary to cover PhD tuition fees. Specific bursary conditions will be advertised locally.


This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 956713.

Offer Requirements



  • MENTOR is looking for a candidate with a strong academic background and exceptional grades, who have been awarded, or expect to get before the project start, a Master of Science degree in Electrical/Optical Engineering, Physics, or equivalent.
  • Good knowledge of current optical networking technologies like flexible grid, filterless optical networks, subcarrier multiplexing, as well as different modulation formats
  • Programming skills (Python/MATLAB)
  • Analytical skills in the areas of optimization and machine learning
  • English Language: Excellent. ESR must demonstrate that their ability to understand and express themselves in both written and spoken English is sufficient for them to derive the full benefits of the network training.
  • Effective verbal and written communication skills and ability to work in an international team.
  • Autonomous working, results oriented and excellent team player.
  • Applicants must comply with the usual MSCA eligibility and mobility rules.
  • All applicants MUST be within their first 4 years of research experience.

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Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya

EURAXESS offer ID: 595520


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