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PhD Projects

All beneficiaries commit themselves to stimulate equal opportunities for male & female ESRs. This message will be included in all posted vacancies.
Employers should ensure that the working conditions for researchers, including for disabled researchers, provide where appropriate the flexibility deemed essential for successful research performance in accordance with existing national legislation and with national or sectoral collective-bargaining agreements. They should aim to provide working conditions which allow both women and men researchers to combine family and work, children and career.

Scholarship details

The Marie Skłodowska-Curie programme offers highly competitive and attractive salary and working conditions. It consists of:

  • a living allowance

  • a mobility allowance

  •  family allowance.

Living allowance refers to the basic, gross amount for the benefit of the researcher to be paid to the researcher in monthly instalments. For MSCA calls launched in 2016-2017, the amount for an ESR is €3,110 per month (€37,320/year). This amount is then adjusted through the application of a correction coefficient to  the living allowance of the country in which the researcher will be recruited. The net salary results from deducting all compulsory (employer/employee) social security contributions as well as direct taxes (e.g. income tax) from the gross amounts. The rate indicated here is for researchers devoting themselves to their project on a full-time basis.

Mobility allowance contributes to the expenses of the researcher caused by the mobility. The amount of the mobility allowance is specified in Table 1 of the MSCA Work Programme and for  the calls 2016-2017 it amounts to €600 per month. 

Family Allowance of €500 per month will be paid should the researcher have  family. In this  context, family is defined as persons linked to the researcher by (i) marriage, or (ii) a  relationship with equivalent status to a marriage recognised by the national or  relevant regional legislation of the country where this relationship was formalised; or  (iii) dependent children who are actually being maintained by the researcher.

The mobility and family allowance is a fixed amount, regardless of the country of recruitment, and may be taxable depending on the country in question.

Researchers enrolled in a doctoral programme are expected to be appointed for up to a maximum of 36 months.

More details in Sections 5.1, 5.2 and 5.3 of the guide for applicants to H2020-MSCA-ITN-2016.

Click on each title to access a description of the position.

To apply please contact directly the supervisor of each ESR position whose email is indicated below. Deadline for application is July 5th.



University of Milano Bicocca

Prof Stefano Sanguinetti


Quantum nanostructures and devices fabricated by Droplet Epitaxy on GaAs, Ge and Si substrates for quantum information

Fabrication of strain-free, shape-controlled QD materials by Droplet Epitaxy on Si, Ge and GaAs (also high index) substrates, with particular emphasis on charge tunable devices and electrically triggered single photon sources.



University of Milano Bicocca

Prof Stefano Sanguinetti


Growth and Characterization of Nano-engineered QDs and self-assembled hybrid dot-metal structures

Development and characterization of two innovative types of quantum nanostructures, namely hybrid QD-metal nanoparticles and nano-engineered QDs. ESR2 will grow the structures and will study the exciton and multiexciton recombination with high spatial, spectral, angular and time resolution spectroscopy using advanced experimental equipment. ESR2 will carefully investigate the change in the recombination rate and emission pattern of the QDs mediated by the interaction with the plasmonic resonances of metallic nanostructures.



Toshiba Research Europe Ltd

Dr Andrew Shields


Quantum optical properties of single QD

Investigation of quantum optical properties of single QDs. Benefiting from the experience and equipment available, the ESR will determine the photon statistics of single photons, and photon pairs emitted by QDs supplied by beneficiaries within the network. Other factors important for quantum light sources, such as fine-structure, entanglement fidelity, and particularly coherence time and two-photon-interference will be investigated, leading to the improved entangled light sources.



Toshiba Research Europe Ltd

Dr Andrew Shields


III-V single photon sources grown on Si/Ge

Adapt low temperature spectroscopy and quantum correlation systems available at Toshiba to investigate emission properties of III-V QDs grown by network participants. ESR4 will be in charge of quantum optics experiments on dots grown on Si and Ge. By study and optimization, the ESR will work to realize a single photon emitter on Si/Ge, which would be of great advantage for integration with Silicon photonics and with conventional integrated electronics.


Universität Hamburg

Prof Wolfgang Hansen


Development of droplet-drilled QDs for single-photon manipulation and non-classical light storage

Fabrication by MBE of GaAs QDs by filling of droplet-drilled nanoholes. The MBE based growth strategies will be optimized in close connection with the spectroscopy groups and the samples will be characterized by atomic force microscopy as well as single-dot photoluminescence spectroscopy. The fabricated samples will be further processed and investigated in the spectroscopy groups.



Universität Hamburg

Prof Gabriel Bester


Atomistic Theory of QDs

Development and application of an atomistic method able to address electron, hole, exciton, multiexciton and charged exciton dynamics in QDs. The effects of external fields (electric, magnetic or strain) will be investigated and the accurate “ab-initio” results will be mapped, whenever possible, onto simple few-band models for interpretation.

Project description


Eindhoven University of Technology

Prof Paul Koenraad


Quantum dot shape and symmetry analysis by X-STM and atom probe tomography

The ESR will focus on an accurate determination of the 3D shape of QDs with full atomic scale resolution. The work will unravel growth effects that modify the dot structure such as: dot destabilization during capping, etching of the metallic droplet in the underlying material and intermixing. Low temperature tunnel spectroscopy, light assisted scanning tunneling microscopy and scanning tunneling induced luminescence will be used to determine the electronic and optical properties of individual dots. This work will support the optical studies performed in TUE and elsewhere in the consortium.



Eindhoven University of Technology

Prof Michael Flatté


Theory of nanoscale control of quantum nanostructures

The study of the dynamics for the strain-free dot will focus on assessing the relative effects of asymmetries of structure, strain, and composition on the dot’s electronic, optical and magnetic properties (e.g. fine structure of excitons), and thus will use dot structural information gathered within the network for these calculations, as well as ab initio results from ESR6 to constrain the few-band models that will be used for these calculations.In addition the presence of nearby metallic regions will be described as those of an effective classical resonator, and the energetics (e.g. fine structure) and dynamics (e.g. decay rates) of dot-bound excitons will be evaluated quantum-mechanically in the presence of this classical resonator.


University of Sheffield

Prof Alexander Tartakovskii


On-chip architectures for linear optics quantum information processing (QIP) with nano-engineered QDs

The project will focus on Droplet Epitaxy InGaAs QDs in GaAs photonic crystal cavities and suspended GaAs waveguides fabricated by electron-beam-lithography on non-III-V substrates, also the area where USh reported significant breakthrough recently. Initially, registration techniques will be used to couple one or more randomly positioned dots to cavities and waveguides, which would allow to demonstrate efficient QD single-photon sources coupled to waveguides.




Prof. Bernhard Urbaszek


Polarization tuning of QD based quantum emitters

Nuclear spin effects play an important role for the fidelity of entangled photon sources. The ESR will further develop resonant spectroscopy on symmetric [111] dots, which in addition to be excellent entangled photon emitters have recently revealed surprising spin properties.



University College London

Prof Huiyun Liu


 Monolithical dot-in-well and dot-in-wire growth on Si and Ge substrates

UCL has a molecular beam epitaxy system for the growth of III-V materials and devices on III-V, Ge and Si substrates. The ESR will develop the growth of novel QD epitaxial structures on silicon substrates. UCL MBE system is equipped with a custom designed white-phosphorus-zone automated temperature controller, which is vital for the growth of high quality GaAsP nanowires on Si substrate which will be developed by the ESR in this project.

Project description


University of Basel

Prof. Richard Warburton


 Development of hybrid QD-cold atom quantum system

A single QD will be used as a fast, efficient, narrow-linewidth source of single photons; an ultra-dense gas of ultra-cold Rb atoms will be used as the storage medium. A single photon will be stored in the atomic ensemble and recreated at a later time with a control laser pulse. The QD must emit at the magic wavelength 780 nm in order to match the Rb atoms and the spectral bandwidth of each photon must be small.



Universität Würzburg

Prof Sven Hoefling


QD based single photon sources grown on (111),(112) and (001) GaAs substrates

The ESR13 fabricated materials and devices will be based on QDs grown on (111), (112) and (001) GaAs substrates and will design the devices. Main task of ESR13 will the epitaxial growth of the QDs, the fabrication in the clean room facility of the microstructures and their characterization by optical (polarization resolved µ-PL, Hanbury Brown Twiss set up) and structural techniques (AFM, SEM, TEM).  ESR13 will perform comparative studies on the temperature stability of QDs with and without a wetting layer.



Single Quantum

Dr Gabriele Bulgarini


Development and implementation of optimized superconducting single photon detectors

We are looking for an Early Stage Researcher for the Marie Curie project 4Photon. At our labs at Single Quantum,  you will actively take  charge of  the design and development of superconducting single photon detectors optimized to have the highest performances at near-infrared. The systems will be first tested at Single Quantum and then, under the framework of the collaboration, used at  the labs of various universities and research institutes for measurement of quantum light sources.




Prof. Khaled Karrai


Development of confocal microscope for polarimetry of semiconductor nano-structures

ESR15 will respond to the growing demand of the network participants and the international market by developing a novel confocal microscope system that allows (i) to control the polarization of the optical excitation source (Laser) (ii) analyze the polarization of the light emitted by individual QDs.