PhD student in Computational Science with focus on High-Performance Computing

Updated: 8 days ago

Umeå University is one of Sweden’s largest higher education institutions with over 37,000 students and about 4,700 employees. The University offers a diversity of high-quality education and world-leading research in several fields. Notably, the groundbreaking discovery of the CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool, which was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, was made here. At Umeå University, everything is close. Our cohesive campuses make it easy to meet, work together and exchange knowledge, which promotes a dynamic and open culture.

The ongoing societal transformation and large green investments in northern Sweden create enormous opportunities and complex challenges. For Umeå University, conducting research about – and in the middle of – a society in transition is key. We also take pride in delivering education to enable regions to expand quickly and sustainably. In fact, the future is made here.

At the Department Computing Science, which is characterized by world-leading research, and by highly-ranked international education, we are looking for a doctoral student in computational science with focus on high-performance computing.

The department has been growing rapidly in recent years where focus on an inclusive and bottom-up driven environment are key elements. The 60 doctoral students within the department compose a diverse group of different nationalities, backgrounds and fields. As a doctoral student, you will receive the benefits of support in career development, networking, administrative and technical support functions along with good employment conditions. See more information at:

Is this interesting for you? We welcome your application before July 7, 2024. 

Project description: “High-Performance Parallel Tensor Network Algorithms”

A tensor network is a flexible mathematical framework for efficiently approximating and computing with high-dimensional tensors. Tensor networks appear in a broad variety of scientific applications, ranging from the study of quantum many-body systems to autonomous driving and to explainable machine learning models. Computations with tensor networks present two main challenges: 1) The order in which nodes are contracted with one another affects both time and space requirements, and finding the optimal order is an NP complete problem. 2) In many applications, the tensors exhibit sparsity and properties that must be exploited for the contractions to become feasible. High-performance parallel libraries for the computation of tensor networks are still vastly missing. This project aims to develop novel algorithms, data structures, and software for tensor network algorithms in various applications.

The doctoral student will be part of the High-Performance and Automatic Computing group (HPAC), and co-supervised by Paolo Bientinesi and Lars Karlsson. HPAC’s webpage:

Admission requirements 

The general admission requirements for doctoral studies are completion of the second-cycle studies, or completed course requirements of at least 240 ECTS credits, of which at least 60 ECTS credits are at second-cycle level, or an equivalent education from abroad. 

To fulfill the specific entry requirements for doctoral studies computational science and engineering, you are required to have completed at least 90 credits in computational science and engineering courses, of which at least 30 credits shall have been acquired at second-cycle level. You who otherwise have acquired skills that are deemed equivalent are also eligible.

Because of the interdisciplinary nature of the project, which aims to connect applications in physics with the domains of high-performance computing, numerical linear algebra, and tensor computations, the ideal candidate has knowledge of physics and its numerical methods, both discrete and continuous mathematics, as well as applied mathematics and parallel programming. Furthermore, the candidate needs to be proactive and independent in the identification of topics relevant to the conducted research, and in the acquisition of new knowledge.

Candidates must demonstrate very good knowledge in programming languages and in parallel programming, specifically for scientific computing applications. They must be skilled programmers (C/C++, Python, and Matlab), familiar with different computing paradigms (shared-memory and distributed-memory), and with the related libraries (OpenMP, MPI). The research will be carried out in collaboration with international researchers from different disciplines, so good collaborative skills are required, and you must be able to speak and write in English fluently.

The most important assessment criteria for the selection are scientific expertise and skills, suitability for the project, and documented ability to work in groups and to independently carry out work tasks.

About the position

The position provides you with the opportunity to pursue PhD studies in Computational Science for four years, with the goal of achieving the degree of Doctor in Computational Science and Engineering. While the position is mainly devoted to PhD studies (at least 80% of the time), it may include up to 20% department service (usually teaching). If so, the total time for the position is extended accordingly, resulting in a maximum of five years.

The procedure for recruitment for the position is in accordance with the Higher Education Ordinance (chapter 12, 2§) and the decision regarding the position cannot be appealed.

The expected starting date is September 1, 2024 or as otherwise agreed.


Applications must be submitted electronically using the e-recruitment system of Umeå University.

A complete application should contain the following documents:

  • A cover letter that motivates your interest in the position and that describes how your qualifications and experience are relevant to the employment (maximum 2 A4 pages with 11pt font). 
  • A curriculum vitae 
  • Reprints / copies of completed BSc and/or MSc theses and other relevant publications, if any
  • Copies of degree certificates, including documentation of completed academic courses and obtained grades 
  • Documentation and description of other relevant experiences or competences.
  • Contact information of at least two references.

The application must be written in English or Swedish. Attached documents must be in Word or pdf format. Applications must be submitted electronically using the e-recruitment system of Umeå University, and be received no later than July 7, 2024. 

The Department of Computing Science values gender diversity, and therefore particularly encourages women and those outside the gender binary to apply for the position.

For additional information, please contact Prof. Paolo Bientinesi ([email protected] )

We look forward to receiving your application!

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