Call for applications - HPI PhD studentships 2017

The Hasso-Plattner-Institute in Computer Science for Africa (HPI in CS4A, affiliated with the Department of Computer Science at the University of Cape Town, is offering PhD studentships in the field of Computer Science to students from the African continent. More specifically, we seek high quality applications centered on ideas that revolve around proposing solutions to problems of computing that emerge in the African context. Areas of research of potential supervisors include (with subfield listed in brackets):

Artificial Intelligence [Knowledge Representation, Semantic Sensor Web, Hybrid Intelligent Systems, Autonomous Learning]

Computational Science [Computational Chemistry, Computational Astronomy]

Computer Graphics [Augmented and Virtual Reality, Procedural Modelling]

Digital Libraries [Cultural Heritage Preservation, Architectures and Interoperability]

Educational Technology [Computer Science Education, Gamification, Teacher-focused Interventions]

Human-Computer Interaction for Development (HCI4D) [Co-design, Public Health Education, Mobile-first Content Creation, Cloudlet Applications, Mobile Health, Authentication, Voice systems] 

Information Retrieval [IR for development, African/marginalized language IR]

Knowledge Engineering [Ontologies, Knowledge Representation and Reasoning, Natural Language Generation, Intelligent Conceptual Modelling]

Networks [Cloudlets, Content and Information Centric Networks]

Parallel/High Performance Computing [GPGPU, Multithreading]

Visualization [Scientific visualisation, Tangible interfaces, Design]


Eligible candidates will meet the following criteria:

1. Hold a Masters Degree in Computer Science, supported by a good dissertation

2. Be proficient in English as attested by a recent score (obtained within 3 - 5 years before application for admission) of at least 570 (paper-based test) or 230 (computer-based test) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL); or a recent overall band score of 7.0 (with no individual element of the test scoring below 6.0) on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). If your medium of education was in English then you are exempt from this requirement.


Important Dates

• Application Deadline: 7 October, 2016


Application Guidelines

To apply, please submit the following:

• A curriculum vitae ( 2-3 pages)

• Academic Transcripts


• A brief research proposal (2-3 pages) with a potential supervisor at UCT identified


Your proposal must outline your research question(s) and proposed methodology for conducting the research. We will only consider proposals that fall within the core areas of research listed. Please submit a single pdf file, comprising ALL the application materials, electronically at the following link -

Under the title field you should submit a provisional title for your research and under keywords list the areas of specialization. Applications must be submitted on or before the 7th October 2016.

Shortlisted candidates will be expected to arrange for three reference letters to be submitted and be available for a Skype interview in late-October.

Questions or requests for more information can be made using the contact details below:

Contact Information

A/Prof James Gain, 
Coordinator, HPI PhD Research School in CS4A 

Department of Computer Science, 18 University Ave., University of Cape Town Cape Town, 
South Africa, 7701