PhD Fellowships

One PhD Fellowship to start in 2021

Expiration: APRIL 15, 2021

The HLT-MT Unit of FBK will sponsor one grant for doctoral students starting with the A.Y. 2021-2022:

Title: Flexibility and Robustness in Speech Translation

The need to translate audio input from one language into text in a target language has dramatically increased in the last few years with the growth of audiovisual content freely available on the Web. Current speech translation (ST) systems are now required to be flexible and robust enough to operate in different application scenarios and diverse working conditions. On one side, the industry calls for key features like real-time processing, domain adaptability, extended language coverage, and the capability to adhere to application-specific constraints (e.g. length or lip-synch constraints in the subtitling and dubbing scenarios). On the other side, society calls for new efforts towards inclusiveness with respect to specific categories and groups (e.g. gender-sensitivity, customization to the needs of impaired users). Both dimensions (industry and society) face the orthogonal challenges posed by the variability of audio conditions (e.g. background noise, strong speakers’ accent, overlapping speakers). The objective of this PhD is to advance the state of the art in speech translation to make ST flexible and robust to these and other factors.

The ideal candidate must have recently completed or expect very soon an MSc or equivalent degree in computer science, artificial intelligence, computational linguistics, engineering, or a closely related area. In addition, the applicant should:

  • Have a strong interest in Machine and Speech Translation
  • Have a strong background in deep learning and machine learning, in general
  • Have excellent programming skills in Python and experience in PyTorch
  • Enjoy working with real-world problems and large data sets
  • Good knowledge of written and spoken English
  • Enjoy working in a closely collaborating team

Full details for the application:

Doctoral fellowships will be formally pursued at the ICT International Doctoral School of the University of Trento. The program starts in November 2021, has a length of three years and includes attendance of courses during the first two years, while the third is fully dedicated to research work. An internship period is also foreseen.

Working Environment
The doctoral student will be employed at the MT group at Fondazione Bruno Kessler, Trento, Italy. The group (about 10 people including staff and students) has a long tradition in research on machine and speech translation and is currently involved in several projects. Former students are nowadays employed in leading IT companies in the world.

Fondazione Bruno Kessler offers an attractive benefits package, including a flexible work week, full reimbursement for conferences and summer schools, a competitive salary, an excellent team of supervisors and mentors, help for housing, full health insurance, the possibility of Italian courses, sporting facilities.

Application Deadline: April 15, 2021, hrs. 04.00 PM (+2 GMT)

Potential candidates are strongly invited to contact us in advance for preliminary interviews. Precedence for interviews will be given to short-listed candidates that will send us a complete CV via email ([email protected], [email protected]) by April 5, 2021.


Marco Turchi
Matteo Negri
HLT-MT Research Unit