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Job: 4yr phd in Modelling of Norms/Policies using Semantic Web Technologies @USI Lugano (CH)

From: <nicoletta.fornara@usi.ch>
Date: Wed, 7 Mar 2018 14:00:00 +0000
To: "'semantic-web@w3.org'" <semantic-web@w3.org>
Message-ID: <76e413fa3ad447a0b4bee0d4c2987d0a@usi.ch>
Funded PhD in the area of Modelling Norms/Policies using Semantic Web Technologies Università della Svizzera italiana (USI), Institute of Communication Technologies, Lugano, Switzerland

Supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF) for 4 years.

::The project

The goal of the research work will be to investigate how to extend the expressivity of ODRL (Open Digital Rights Language), a language for the specification of policies and licenses, which is formalized in RDF with an abstract model specified by an ontology. Given that ODRL has only an informal semantics, we plan to study the semantic aspects of the proposed extended normative language. Another goal is to develop and evaluate a software framework able to exploit automatic reasoning on the semantics of norms for providing fundamental services like monitoring and simulation of norms evolution in time.

::We offer

- The doctoral student will be enrolled in the Ph.D. programme in Communication Sciences (http://www.com.usi.ch/en/presentazione-studiare/dottorato-com.htm  );

- The doctoral student will work under the scientific supervision of Dr. Nicoletta Fornara (http://www.people.usi.ch/fornaran/publications.html ), the supervisor of the thesis will be professor Marco Colombetti;

- The successful candidate will be offered the possibility to work in a dynamic research team and a multidisciplinary scientific environment;

- Attractive salary, in line with Swiss standards (http://www.snf.ch/SiteCollectionDocuments/Annex_XII_Ausfuehrungsreglement_Beitragsreglement_E.pdf  );

::Desired skills

- Master in Information Science or closely related areas;

- To be admitted to the status of PhD student, the candidate must have obtained a Master final score of no less than 8/10.

- Good programming skills;

- Very good command in spoken and written English;

- Good communication and collaboration skills.

::Optional but preferential

- Knowledge of Semantic Web Technologies (e.g. OWL, RDF, SPARQL, OWL-API, and JENA) and Logics


Applicants should submit the following documents, written in English:

- an updated CV

- list of exams and grades obtained during the Bachelor and the Master of Science;

- list of two academic references (with e-mail addresses) that can be contacted for more information for the “short listed candidates”;

- short letter stating a research interest and motivation;

Applications (or requests for further information) should be sent to Dr. Nicoletta Fornara (nicoletta DOT fornara AT usi.ch ) with subject “Ph.D. SNF”.

Further details are available at


Nicoletta Fornara

Docente-ricercatore (maître d’enseignement et de recherché)


Università della Svizzera italiana

Faculty of Communication Science

Institute of Communication Technologies

Office 216, Via Buffi 13 6900 Lugano, Switzerland

+41 58 666 4513


Received on Thursday, 8 March 2018 09:36:01 UTC

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