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Department of Informatics Interactive Visual Data Analysis Group

PhD and Pre-Doc Positions

Fulltime Positions in Interactive Visual Data Analysis

IVDA Image Gallery

We are looking for motivated research assistants (m/f/d) in the areas of visual analytics, interactive data science, interactive machine learning, and human-centered AI for PhD projects in the Interactive Visual Data Analysis Group at the University of Zurich (UZH). Together, we will develop new approaches for the characterization, design, and evaluation of interactive visual interfaces to combine the strengths of both humans and algorithms in interactive machine learning and data science applications. The positions are available with the possibility to develop a PhD thesis in Computer Science at UZH.

Open Positions

Links to the specifics of the open PhD positions:

Note: all positions have a pre-doc option, so that an interested graduate student can start earlier

Topic Start Duration Status
Human-Centered Interactive Visual Data Analysis link end of 2024, or as pre-doc 4 years opening
Human-Centered Creation of Item Rankings link end of 2024, or as pre-doc 4 years opening
Interactive Visual Data Labelinglink Jan 2025, or as pre-doc 4 years opening

Research Context

In each PhD project, the primary research focus will be at the intersection between Information Visualization, Visual Analytics, Human-Computer Interaction, and Machine Learning. Each PhD project will follow a human-centered approach to data science, in order to foster the involvement of humans in the data analysis process with interactive visual interfaces. The research will be on the combination of the strength of humans and machines in an iterative and incremental data analysis process in order to tackle remaining data science challenges.

  • Examples of data-oriented challenges are heterogeneous data, dirty data, uncertain data, or unlabeled data.
  • Important model-oriented challenges include data preprocessing, model building, model quality assessment, or model explanation.
  • Particularly interesting user-oriented challenges are different degrees of user expertise, users’ personalization intents, and understanding and supporting user preferences with respect to data and tasks.

The contributions of the PhD projects will include human-centered data science solutions tailored to the information need of individual users. These new approaches will also make machine learning applicable to larger user groups in the context of data science and digitalization initiatives.

For more information about Prof. Bernard's recent research context, see


  • Master degree in computer science or comparable subject from a recognized university
  • Knowledge or interest in one or more of the following: information visualization, visual analytics, machine learning, data mining, information retrieval, or related data science fields.
  • Profound skills in programming (Python, Java)
  • Interest to work on applied research questions in a collaborative research environment

Desired Qualification and Skills

  • Knowledge of user-centered design, design study methods, and evaluation methods
  • Expertise with methods such as classification, regression, clustering, dimensionality reduction, similarity search, or recommender systems
  • Experience in supervising students
  • Ability and willingness to work effectively with students, faculty, and staff from all backgrounds

What we offer

  • Possibility to achieve a PhD degree in computer science at UZH
  • Hands-on supervision and support in conducting excellent research and in publishing results in top international journals and conferences
  • Creative working atmosphere in a motivated, cooperative, and technically very well equipped environment
  • Excellent professional and personal development possibilities and hence, excellent basis for a future career in interactive visual data analysis in an industrial context
  • Specific benefits like flexible working hours, young scientist promotion opportunities, parental leave benefits, nursery services, and care for dependents and much more
  • Very good salary, according to local university regulations and standards in Switzerland

How to apply

Official applications should include:

  • Motivation letter
  • CV
  • Certificates of degrees and educational background
  • Clear exposition of prior data visualization experience
  • Copy of the Master thesis

Zurich, University of Zurich, and Workplace

Zurich Region

The UZH is a top internationally recognized research university with faculties in medicine, humanities, economics as well as mathematical and natural sciences. UZH is the largest university in Switzerland and regularly ranked among the top world leading research universities, e.g., according to the Academic Ranking of World Universities by Shanghai Jiao Tong University. The Department of Computer Science (Institut für Informatik – IfI) covers major computer science, software engineering and information management research and teaching topics, it offers BSc, MSc as well as PhD degrees in informatics/computer science.

The Interactive Visual Data Analysis Group is located at the IfI, in the vibrant city of Zurich as part of the University’s new Nord-Campus in Oerlikon in a renovated modern office building. The UZH Nord-Campus is conveniently located a short walk off the Max-Bill Platz, center of the new trendy living, shopping and business district in Oerlikon, as well as near the Oerlikon train, S-Bahn and tram stations. The Zurich international airport (ZRH) is easily reachable with public or private transportation.


PhD students are remunerated according to local university regulations and standards from the funding agencies. Appointments will be made with respects to standard University rules; same applies for fringe benefits and vacation days. Appointments are expected to involve a full-time effort in research, teaching, and administration. It is the goal of UZH to offer an equal opportunity workplace environment and as part of this, we especially encourage women to apply. Specific benefits include flexible working hours, young scientist promotion opportunities, parental leave benefits, nursery services, and care for dependents and much more.


Prof. Dr. Jürgen Bernard
Interactive Visual Data Analysis Group
Department of Informatics, University of Zurich
Binzmühlestrasse 14
8050 Zurich
Research Page


The applications should be sent to For questions, feel free to contact Prof. Bernard using this Email as well.
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