« Interactions between Intellectual Property Law (IP) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) » - Ph.D. Grant at Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB)

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    Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB)
    Social sciences
    First Stage Researcher (R1) (Up to the point of PhD)


General Description

The Unité de droit économique, Centre de droit privé at Université Libre de Bruxelles offers a full-time research grant for a 3 years period in order to write a Ph.D. thesis (in English or French) on the general topic “Interactions between Intellectual Property Law (IP) and Artificial Intelligence (AI)”.

The first year of funding is considered “seed money”: it aims at giving the chosen candidate the possibility to further define his/her scientific project in order to obtain external funding beyond the initial 3 years period.

All relevant information (in English and French) can be found in the attached document.

What is funded

Scientific Project

Applicants must submit a scientific project on one specific issue related to the general topic mentioned above. In very broad terms, the project could be dedicated to, for instance:

  • The impact and/or the relevance of the use of AI in the assessment of IP law (subject matter/requirements/scope/limits of the protection);
  • The adequacy between positive IP law and new forms of creation generated by or using AI (assisted or generative creation)
  • The opportunity to develop an IP law specifically adapted to AI (new form of protection);

If relevant, the scientific project may address one or several IP rights.



Starting date: October 1st, 2018.

1 year “seed money” grant (not renewable) followed by a 2 years grant (not renewable).

In the event the chosen candidate’s application at FNRS (see below, Eligibility, Specific requirement) would be selected by the end of the 1 year “seed money” grant, he/she will carry on his/her research at Unité de droit économique as a FNRS Research Fellow (2 years, renewable once).


Required Degree

Applicants must hold a Master Degree in Law (120 Credits) or another degree deemed equivalent and fulfil the requirements of doctoral enrolment.

Applicant’s profile

In addition to the required degree, the applicant should evidence excellent academic results, language proficiency (perfect command of English or French and good command of the other of these two languages; a third language is an asset) and a good knowledge of IP law. In this regard, holding an additional degree (LL.M., MS, ManaMa, …) and/or evidencing professional experience in this field is an asset.

Specific requirement

With the aim to extend the research funding beyond the initial 3 years period, the applicant commits to apply to the Fonds National de la Recherche Scientifique (FNRS) (2 years Research Fellowship, renewable once within the first year of his/her appointment (“seed money”).

He/She shall provide all required documents in order to confirm that he/she will meet the eligibility criteria upon the first FNRS call for proposal following his/her appointment (additional information in attached document).