PhD position in AI4Forensics: Forensic Analysis of Money streams in Subversive Crime

at University of Amsterdam
Published October 25, 2022
Location Amsterdam, Netherlands
Category Machine Learning  
Job Type Scholarship  


Do you want to do research at the frontier of Artificial Intelligence to support forensic investigators? Then this position will be of interest to you. The Multimedia Analytics (MultiX) group of the Informatics Institute of the University of Amsterdam and the Netherlands Forensic Institute (NFI) have started the AI4Forensics lab. To strengthen the lab, we are seeking a new PhD student. The goal of the lab is to develop forensically sound innovative AI methods, which have a probabilistic interpretation and which are accompanied by visualizations to make the methods and the results explainable to non-experts. The methods developed in the project will in due course be used in casework of the Netherlands Forensic Institute and therefore your work directly contributes to justice and a safer society.

This PhD position will focus on the analysis of large-scale financial streams to detect and understand traces of subversive crime. Graph convolutional networks are a natural starting point to analyse such financial transactions. As traces can be individual transactions or involve many transactions we aim for multi-scale GCN methods and by using variational methods they will be given a probabilistic interpretation. Interactive graph visualizations which allow to zoom through the different scales will make the methods explainable.

What are you going to do?

You are expected:

  • to perform research in new methods for the detection and interpretation of financial streams in the context of subversive crime;
  • to publish and present the results in international journals and leading conferences, and to write a PhD thesis;
  • to develop AI tools to be used in forensic casework and to evaluate them with expert users;
  • to collaborate with other researchers in our Multimedia Analytics (MultiX) group;
  • to work one day a week on average at the Netherlands Forensic Institute to intensively collaborate with digital forensics experts;
  • to contribute to our education activities as assistant to a course and/or guiding students in their thesis work.

What do you have to offer?

You are eager to work in an interdisciplinary setting where you can leverage your excellent skills in AI to contribute to a safer society.

Your experience and profile:

  • a Master’s degree in Artificial Intelligence, Computer Science or related field;
  • a strong scientific expertise in (Explainable) Machine Learning;
  • demonstrated experience in using and developing deep learning based methods in python;
  • the ability and willingness to acquire expertise on digital forensics;
  • good writing and communication skills in English;
  • a certificate of conduct (part of the hiring procedure when selected).

Knowledge and expertise in the forensic field is recommended and counts as a plus.

Our offer

A temporary contract for 38 hours per week for the duration of 4 years (the initial contract will be for a period of 18 months and after satisfactory evaluation it will be extended for a total duration of 4 years). The preferred starting date is as soon as possible. This should lead to a dissertation (PhD thesis). We will draft an educational plan that includes attendance of courses and (international) meetings. We also expect you to assist in teaching undergraduates and master students.

The gross monthly salary, based on 38 hours per week and dependent on relevant experience, ranges between € 2,541 to € 3,247 (scale P). This does not include the 8% holiday allowance and the 8,3% year-end allowance the UvA offers. The UFO profile PhD Candidate is applicable. A favourable tax agreement, the ‘30% ruling’, may apply to non-Dutch applicants. The Collective Labour Agreement of Universities of the Netherlands is applicable.

Besides the salary and a vibrant and challenging environment at Science Park we offer you multiple fringe benefits:

  • 232 holiday hours per year (based on fulltime) and extra holidays between Christmas and 1 January;
  • Multiple courses to follow from our Teaching and Learning Centre;
  • A complete educational program for PhD students;
  • Multiple courses on topics such as leadership for academic staff;
  • Multiple courses on topics such as time management, handling stress and an online learning platform with 100+ different courses;
  • 7 weeks birth leave (partner leave) with 100% salary;
  • Partly paid parental leave;
  • The possibility to set up a workplace at home;
  • A pension at ABP for which UvA pays two third part of the contribution;
  • The possibility to follow courses to learn Dutch;
  • Help with housing for a studio or small apartment when you’re moving from abroad.

Are you curious to read more about our extensive package of secondary employment benefits, take a look here.

About us

The University of Amsterdam (UvA) is the Netherlands' largest university, offering the widest range of academic programmes. At the UvA, 30,000 students, 6,000 staff members and 3,000 PhD candidates study and work in a diverse range of fields, connected by a culture of curiosity.

The Faculty of Science has a student body of around 8,000, as well as 1,800 members of staff working in education, research or support services. Researchers and students at the Faculty of Science are fascinated by every aspect of how the world works, be it elementary particles, the birth of the universe or the functioning of the brain.

The mission of the Informatics Institute (IvI) is to perform curiosity-driven and use-inspired fundamental research in Computer Science. The main research themes are Artificial Intelligence, Computational Science and Systems and Network Engineering. Our research involves complex information systems at large, with a focus on collaborative, data driven, computational and intelligent systems, all with a strong interactive component.

The Multimedia Analytics Lab Amsterdam (MultiX) is a research group within the Informatics Institute at the University of Amsterdam. In MultiX we research multimedia analytics by developing AI techniques for getting the richest information possible from the data (image/video/text/graphs) interactions surpassing human and machine intelligence, and visualizations blending it all in effective interfaces for applications in health, cultural heritage, forensics and law enforcement.

Next to participating in the AI4Forensics Lab with NFI, MultiX also takes part in AIMlab and Police Lab AI. All three labs are strongly embedded in the larger UvA and Amsterdam artificial intelligence ecosystem with strong connections to multiple Innovation Centre for Artificial Intelligence (ICAI) and the UvA’s Data Science Centre.

The research agenda of the Netherlands Forensic Institute (NFI) Digital Forensic Investigation focuses on the development of new methods, tools and procedures for obtaining and processing digital material for the purpose of investigating and providing evidence in criminal cases.

Want to know more about our organisation? Read more about working at the University of Amsterdam.

Any questions?

Do you have questions about this vacancy? Or do you want to know more about our organisation? Please contact:

  • Prof. Marcel Worring, group leader MultiX, for general questions on the position;or
  • Prof. Zeno Geradts, of the Netherlands Forensic Institute, for questions concerning the forensic aspects of the work.

Job application

If you feel the profile fits you, and you are interested in the job, we look forward to receiving your application. You can apply online via the button below. We accept applications until and including 30 November 2022


Applications should include the following information (all files besides your CV should be submitted in one single pdf file):

  • a detailed CV including the months (not just years) when referring to your education and work experience;
  • a letter of motivation;
  • a list of publications.

Please make sure to provide ALL requested documents mentioned above.
You can use the CV field to upload your resume as a separate pdf document. Use the Cover Letter field to upload the other requested documents, including the motivation letter, as one single pdf file.

Only complete applications received within the response period via the link below will be considered.

We will invite potential candidates for interviews soon after the expiration of the vacancy.

The UvA is an equal-opportunity employer. We prioritize diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for everyone. We value a spirit of enquiry and perseverance, provide the space to keep asking questions, and promote a culture of curiosity and creativity.

If you encounter Error GBB451, reach out to our HR Department directly. They will gladly help you continue your application.

No agencies please.