PhD Student - Design of quantum materials for channeling light and electrons (Closed)

Pre-doctoral position
Position category: PhD Student
Reference: 2023/81
Duration: 3 years
Application deadline: 2023/09/11
For more info contact the supervisors:
Dario Bercioux
Alexey Nikitin
How to apply

We are currently accepting applications for the above mentioned position. This is a unique opportunity for highly motivated students recently graduated from the University in Physics or related fields to join one of DIPC’s high-profile research teams.

The role

The main goal of this project is to look for novel low-dimensional quantum materials, with special emphasis on graphene-based, transition metal dichalcogenides, hexagonal boron nitride, and other layered materials, for their use in electronics and optoelectronics. Within this project, we aim to provide a highly valuable understanding of the analogy between the propagation of light and electronic beams to predict novel electronic properties or improve the performance of existing nanoscale electronic devices. Specifically, during the Ph.D. project, the Ph.D. student will address several research questions:

  • Hyperbolic polaritons and nanooptics in low-dimensional quantum materials
  • Electron quantum optics in pn- junctions in Dirac-Weyl systems
  • Electron canalization via superlattices engineering of low-dimensional systems

The successful PhD candidate will be embedded into a very strong research environment of Donostia International Physics Center in Spain. The Ph.D. student will collaborate with leading experts in nanooptics and quantum materials.

The project is, to a large extent, theoretical, but it implies a close collaboration with leading experimental groups.

Desired background & competences

To be admitted as a Ph.D. student, the candidate must have a completed a master's degree in physics, technical physics, or equivalent.

The successful candidate must have demonstrated the following:

  • Understanding of wave phenomena
  • Successful studies in condensed matter physics
  • Understanding of mesoscopic physics

The successful candidate must be:

  • Skilled in academic writing
  • Capable of expressing in a clear and structured manner
  • Capable of preparing clear and concise summaries of ongoing work
  • Be able to document the workflow in a way that is searchable and easy to understand for other group members
  • Excellent command of English

Meriting skills include knowledge in:

  • Quantum optics
  • Quantum materials
  • Programming and data analysis (e.g., Matlab, Wolfram Language, etc.)

Working conditions

  • Contract duration: 1 year (possibility to extend up to 3 years)
  • Estimated annual gross salary: Salary is commensurate with qualifications and consistent with our pay scales
  • Target start date: 2023/10/10

We provide a highly stimulating research environment, and unique professional career development opportunities.

We offer and promote a diverse and inclusive environment and welcomes applicants regardless of age, disability, gender, nationality, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity.

The center

DIPC is a research center whose mission is to perform and catalyze cutting-edge research in physics and related disciplines, as well as to convey scientific culture to society. Located in Donostia / San Sebastian (Basque Country, Spain), DIPC was born from a strategic alliance of both public institutions and private companies. Since 2008 DIPC is a 'Basque Excellence Research Center' (BERC) recognized by the Basque Government's Department of Education. In 2019, DIPC was also recognized as a "Severo Ochoa" Excellence Center by the Spanish Research Agency.

About the team

The Ph.D. candidate will work under the direct supervision of Dario Bercioux (project PI and supervisor) and Alexey Nikitin (co-supervisor). Some parts of the project will be developed in collaboration with Prof. F. Guinea.

The Ph.D. candidate will be incorporated into the Donostia International Physics Center and will be enrolled in the graduate school of the University of Basque Country (

How to apply

Interested candidates should submit an updated CV and a brief statement of interest to the following application email below. 

Reference letters are welcome but not indispensable.

The reference of the specific opening to which the candidate is applying should be stated in the subject line, and the application must be received before the application deadline.

Although candidates are welcome to contact the project supervisors to know further details about the proposed research activity, please be aware that the application will be evaluated only if it is submitted directly to the email address listed below as application email.

Selection process

Applications received by the deadline will be evaluated by a Committee designed by the DIPC board on the basis of the following criteria:

  • CV of the candidate (60%)
  • Adequacy of the candidate’s scientific background to the project (20%)
  • Reference letters (10%)
  • Other: Diversity in gender, race, nationality, etc. (10%)

Evaluation results will be communicated to the candidates soon after. Positions will only be filled if qualified candidates are found.

The DIPC may revoke its decision if the candidate fails to join by the appointed time, in which case the position will be awarded to the candidate with the next highest score, provided it is above 50 (out of 100).

However, the selected candidate may keep the position if, in the opinion of the Selection Committee, the candidate duly justifies the reasons why he or she cannot join before the specified deadline, and as long as the project allows it.


This project has received funding from the Basque Government’s grant program “PIBA” under grant number PIBA_2023_1_0007

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The resolution of this opening has been already published. You can download it here.