INSAIT announces its international doctorate program with professors from CMU, EPFL, ETH Zurich, MIT, Yale


The institute offers 5-year PhD fellowships at 36,000 EUR per year

For the first time in Eastern Europe, one will be able to pursue a world-class PhD in computer science and artificial intelligence, under the supervision of renowned professors from leading U.S. and Swiss universities such as CMU, EPFL, ETH Zurich, MIT, and Yale. Following the academic model of Western institutions, INSAIT’s doctoral program will take up to 5 years, with accepted students receiving a fellowship of 36,000 EUR per year. INSAIT doctoral students will also have the opportunity of spending up to 3 months per year at the mentor’s institution, collaborating with established world-class groups and creating valuable research links.

INSAIT welcomes all outstanding applicants whose goal is to grow into world-class researchers, scientists, or deep-tech entrepreneurs. Students who are currently completing their B.Sc. or M.Sc. degrees or have already completed them in areas such as computer science, data science, physics, electrical engineering, or mathematics, are eligible to be considered for the INSAIT doctoral program. The first students are expected to start in the Fall of 2022.

The initial list of research areas includes machine learning, computer vision, natural language processing, programming languages, verification, systems, computer architecture, automated reasoning, security, theory and algorithms. 

The international team of award-winning mentors includes a who is who in their respective areas, combined having won 11 ERC grants and founded 9 deep-tech startups:

  • Srdjan Capkun, professor at ETH Zurich, ACM fellow, ERC Consolidator Grant. Research interests: system and network security, wireless security, secure localization.
  • Otmar Hilliges, professor at ETH Zurich, ERC Starting and Consolidator Grants. Research interests: computer vision, machine perception, augmented and virtual reality, machine learning.
  • Martin Jaggi, professor at EPFL. Research interests: machine learning and optimization.
  • Andreas Krause, professor at ETH Zurich, ERC Starting and Consolidator Grants. Research interests: machine learning, artificial intelligence, reinforcement learning, probabilistic inference.
  • Peter Mueller, professor at ETH Zurich. Research interests: program verification, static program analysis, type systems, testing, formal methods, tools.
  • Onur Mutlu, professor at ETH Zurich, ACM fellow, IEEE fellow. Research interests: computer architecture, systems, security, and bioinformatics.
  • Martin Odersky, professor at EPFL, ACM fellow, ERC Advanced Grant. Research interests: programming languages, programming methods, compiler construction, foundations of software, object-oriented programming, functional programming.
  • Mathias Payer, professor at EPFL, ERC Starting Grant. Research interests: software security, system security, binary exploitation, effective mitigations, fault isolation/privilege separation, strong sanitization, software testing and information security.
  • Dragomir Radev, professor at Yale, ACM, ACL, AAAS, and AAAI Fellow. Research interests: natural language processing, computational linguistics, machine learning.
  • Ruslan Salakhutdinov, professor at Carnegie-Mellon University, Sloan fellow. Research interests: deep learning, probabilistic graphical models, large-scale optimization.
  • Laurent Vanbever, professor at ETH Zurich, ERC Starting Grant. Research interests: computer networks, network programmability, Internet routing.
  • Virginia Vassilevska-Williams, professor at MIT, Sloan fellow. Research interests: matrix multiplication, graph algorithms, dynamic algorithms, fine-grained complexity theory, theory and algorithms.
  • Martin Vechev, professor at ETH Zurich, ERC Starting and Consolidator Grants. Research interests: reliable, fair, secure machine learning, programming languages, security, quantum programming.
  • Ce Zhang, professor at ETH Zurich, ERC Starting Grant. Research interests: machine learning techniques, machine learning systems, data management.

*More information is available here.



INSAIT - the Institute for artificial intelligence, computer science and technology, located in Sofia, Bulgaria, is the first of its kind  in Eastern Europe to offer world-class research facilities and conditions. INSAIT is created in partnership with Switzerland’s ETH Zurich and EPFL, two of the world’s best technical universities, and is closely advised and supervised by top academics from some of the most elite U.S., European, and Israeli universities and research labs. INSAIT’s sole focus is on scientific excellence: conducting world-class research, attracting outstanding international scientists, and training the next-generation of graduate students and technology leaders.