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Possible PhD projects

The EuroSPIN partners are world leading in the Neuroinformatics field, including computational neuroscience, but with complementary strengths. For example, the Stockholm group brings expertise in large-scale neural modeling; the Freiburg group has world-leading expertise in computational neuroscience and neurotechnology; the Edinburgh group specializes in neural plasticity and development; the Bangalore group performs world leading research on neural systems biology. The associated members (Nordita and Honda Research Institute) allow to extend towards theoretical and applied directions, respectively. This unique constellation of strengths makes it possible to carry out research projects that span from sub-cellular mechanisms to large-scale brain theory, and from basic science to technological applications.

Examples of possible PhD themes are listed  below. Also, see previous years projects, as well as the individual supervisor's webpages, where previous publications usually are found.

During the application process, the students are asked to indicate their preferences with regard to constellations of partners, but also preferred project ideas/areas can be indicated and motivated if the applicant wants.

Constellations of partners, and project fields

  • KTH - Royal Institute of Technology (Sweden)
  • NCBS - National Cenetr for Biological Sciences (India)
  • UoE - University of Edinburgh (UK)
  • ALUF - Albert-Ludwig University Freiburg (Germany)

Projects 2014

Here is the list of example projects. New projects will be added throughout the year and will also be developed in consultation with the applicants. The projects can be either computational/theoretical or combined with experiment.

Projects fall into two categories according to biological scale:

  • sub-cellular level to very detailed single-cell level (modeling of receptor-induced cascades, calcium dynamics, modulation of ion channels in three-dimensional neuron models; examplified in Article III and Article IV )
  • single-cell to neural network level (ion channels, synaptic dynamics, data analysis, network dynamics, emergent phenomena; examplified by Article I, II and V Article I, II and V)

Applicants are asked to indicate in the application form (a) which level they want to work at; (b) whether they want the project to include experiments or not, and (c) which partner universities are acceptable or not.


Thalamocortical basal ganglia loops versus local circuits: integration of sensorimotor processing from different levels (Robert Schmidt - Jeanette Hellgren Kotaleski) Project description (pdf 46 kB)


Looking for the origins of the synapse in the tangled history of SNARE protein complexes (Lars Arvestad - Mukund Thattai) Project description (pdf 17 kB)


Network dynamics in Alzheimer's disease  (Iris Oren, Matthias Henning - Arvind Kumar) Project description (pdf 24 kB)

Modelling ocular dominance plasticity (Mark van Rossum - Arvind Kumar) Project description (pdf 34 kB)

UoE - KTH:

Large-scale cortex inspired network architectures for processing/analysis of spatiotemporal data (Matthias Henning - Anders Lansner, Pawel Herman) Project description (pdf 46 kB)


Quantitative modeling of 'decision-making' going on within neurons (Douglas Armstrong - Upinder Bhalla - Jeanette Hellgren Kotaleski) Project description (pdf 29 kB)

Belongs to: EuroSPIN - Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctoral Programme in Neuroinformatics
Last changed: Nov 26, 2013