PhD Position in Knowledge Representation and Reasoning
Catholic University of Leuven

KU Leuven belongs to the 50 best universities in the world, according to the Timing Higher Education World University Rankings 2020, and is located in the beautiful town of Leuven, 25km from Europe's capital Brussels. The university has an internationally reputed AI group in machine learning and Knowledge Representation and Reasoning (KRR). The open position is in the KRR subgroup of prof. Marc Denecker and prof. Gerda Janssens. The group develops expressive Knowledge Representation languages founded on formal logic; novel inference techniques for exploiting knowledge to solve computational problems of various kinds, often in the context of interactive applications. The group focuses on knowledge intense applications as in legal reasoning, business applications and certain types of engineering applications.


In the first year of the PhD, the student will explore the scientific field of KRR:  following  the doctoral program, getting familiar with inference tools, building  prototype applications  in legal reasoning or business applications. Later the student proceeds by choosing a topic in one of various directions:

  • semantical study of formal languages
  • developing new KR techniques geared towards important problem domains, e.g., legal reasoning or business applications
  • developing new solving techniques, e.g., developing explanation inference tools for building explainable symbolic AI tools
  • develop new tools that support domain experts  to express their knowledge in natural, formally precise and computationally effective way
  • interactive applications where many functionalities are required and  a range of interesting inference tasks arise. In particular, explanation is very important.


Applicants should have  a Master of Science degree in a computer science or mathematics discipline, and have a strong interest in topics such as formal languages,  knowledge representation and formal specification, formal logic, inference techniques, declarative problem solving,  etc. In addition to the formal qualifications, selection is also based on an evaluation of mathematical and algoritmical prowess.


The position is a  full time PhD scholarship of 4 years  with an evaluation after one year.


Please add the transcripts of your (bachelor and master) diplomas to your application.

For more information please contact Prof. dr. Marc Denecker, tel.: +32 16 32 75 57, mail: or Prof. dr. ir. Gerda Janssens, tel.: +32 16 32 76 34, mail:

Solliciteren voor deze vacature kan tot en met 30/09/2020 via onze
KU Leuven wil een omgeving creëren waarin alle talenten maximaal tot ontplooiing kunnen komen, ongeacht gender, leeftijd, culturele herkomst, nationaliteit of functiebeperking. Hebt u vragen in verband met toegankelijkheid of ondersteuningsmogelijkheden, dan kan u ons contacteren via
  • Employment percentage: Voltijds
  • Location: Leuven
  • Apply before: September 30, 2020
  • Tags: Computerwetenschappen

If you apply for this position please say you saw it on Computeroxy


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