Looking for PhD Students

We are looking for people interested in joining the Software Lab as a PhD student. The Software Lab conducts research at the intersection of software engineering, programming languages, machine learning, and security, with a focus on tools and techniques for constructing reliable, efficient, and secure software. General areas of research include:

  • Machine learning models to reason about software
  • Static and dynamic program analysis
  • Test case generation

We focus on techniques that apply to real-world software systems. In the past, we have developed analyses that find bugs and other problems in widely used Java, C/C++, JavaScript, and Python code bases, such as the Java standard library, the Chrome browser, and various popular web sites.

Reasons for Joining the Software Lab

  • The Software Lab offers a unique chance to work in and shape an ambitious and international research group. We value quality over quantity, both in terms of group size and when choosing publication venues.
  • The lab is embedded into an excellent environment for research in computer science, with the University of Stuttgart being one of the top-ranked universities in Germany. CS-Rankings ranks the department among the best in software engineering in Europe (e.g., top-3 when focusing on the four most important SE conferences).
  • The city of Stuttgart is a cultural and intellectual center, surrounded by beautiful hills, and it has been ranked as one of the cities with the highest quality of life in the world.
  • The working language of the lab is English. Knowing German is not required.
  • PhD students at the University of Stuttgart have the opportunity to take courses but are not required to do so.
  • PhD students are paid a competitive salary (about 4,200 Euro in the first year, TV-L E13 payscale).
  • Regular working hours (40 per week) and 30 days of paid time off per year.
  • Many PhD students visit major companies, e.g., Google, Microsoft, and IBM, for research internships during their PhD.
  • Graduates of the lab are offered highly competitive and attractive jobs in academia (e.g., as a faculty member at CISPA) and industry (e.g., as a software engineer at Google).


Please consider applying if you:

  • Have obtained or will soon obtain a master degree in computer science or a related subject
  • Want to pursue academic research at the highest level and obtain a PhD degree within four to five years
  • Are creative and able to come up with fresh ideas to address technical challenges
  • Like to write code and will not be afraid of a large software project
  • Like to read and write technical texts in English
  • Enjoy working with undergraduate students
  • Are persistent and willing to work several years of your life on a project that many people will never understand
  • Like to present your work to academic audiences, e.g., at international conferences, and to non-academic audiences (to increase the number of people that understand your work)
To better understand our research and whether it may fit your interests, please read some recent papers by our lab before you apply.

Additional Information

The University of Stuttgart has a large interest in increasing the number of female researchers, and hence particularly encourages female candidates to apply. Applicants with a degree of disability of 50% or more will be preferred in case they are otherwise equally qualified to the other candidates. It is generally possible to work part time.

How to Apply?

Please send your application, including CV and transcripts of your studies, to software.lab.phd@gmail.com. There is no deadline. We are continuously looking for excellent people to join the lab. Positions will be filled as soon as we find suitable candidates.