Location: Dublin City University
Level: PhD

Anticipated start date: September 2021 / October 2021
Stipend: €18,500 per annum (non taxed) plus university fees 
Closing Date: June 18th, 2021
Full role description 
Apply HERE 



  • Contribute to the ADAPT research agenda that pioneers and combines research in AI driven technologies: Natural Language Processing, Video/Text/Image/Speech processing, digital engagement & HCI, semantic modeling, personalisation, privacy & data governance. 
  • Work with our interdisciplinary team of  leading experts from the complementary fields of, Social Sciences,  Communications, Commerce/Fintech, Ethics, Law,  Health, Environment and Sustainability.
  • Leverage our success. ADAPT’s researchers have signed 43 collaborative research projects, 52 licence agreements and oversee 16 active commercialisation funds and 52 commercialisation awards.  ADAPT has won 40 competitive EU research projects and obtained €18.5 million in non-exchequer non-commercial funding. Additionally, six spinout companies have been formed. ADAPT’s researchers have produced over 1,500 journal and conference publications and nearly 100 PhD students have been trained. 

As an ADAPT funded PhD researcher you will have access to a network of 85 global experts and over 250 staff as well as a wide multi-disciplinary ecosystem across 8 leading Irish universities. We can influence and inform your work, share our networks and collaborate with you to increase your impact, and accelerate your career opportunities. Specifically we offer: 

  • Opportunity to build your profile at international conferences and global events.
  • A solid career pathway through formalised training & development, expert one-on-one supervision and exposure to top specialists.
  • A Fully funded, 4 year PhD postgraduate studentship which includes  a stipend of (€18,500 per annum - non taxed), along with equipment, annual travel funding 
  • Funding for annual fees

Research Topic 

Data has become essential for products and services in all sectors of society, but most organisations cannot quantify the value of their data. This encourages data hoarding and drives inefficient data governance and exploitation. This PhD aims to devise new data analytical techniques and tools for assessing data value over a range of storage technologies (relational, document, graph, geospatial) and deliver semi-automated data governance decision support systems for digitally transformed organisations. This research will be aligned with the EU guidelines on trustworthy AI and leverage a mix of multi-criteria decision analysis, knowledge graphs and statistical data value KPIs and metrics. This work will push the boundaries of metadata-driven data governance, trustworthy AI-based decision-making and our understanding of the value of data. This PhD will feature collaboration with our industry partners in geospatial information systems, healthcare and online retail and thus equip the successful candidate for career paths in both industry and academia.  The successful candidate will work within a large group of Academics, Postdoctoral researchers, PhD students and Software Developers and will be part to the Transparent Digital Governance research strand of the ADAPT Centre under the supervision of Dr Rob Brennan and Dr Malika Bendechache in Dublin City University.

As part of this studentship, the successful candidate  will have the opportunity to:

  • Design and deploy new analytics techniques, algorithms and frameworks for assessing data value across different storage technologies;
  • Design of appropriate research methodology, evaluation and validation criteria for the proposed ideas and models;
  • Enhance their reputation through publishing in top-quality journals and conferences in collaboration with team members;
  • Nationally and internationally present and represent the groundbreaking research carried out by their and the research team;
  • Contribute to short-term, focused industry projects with ADAPT.

On completion of the PhD program the candidate

  • Will have demonstrated understanding of the problems related to Data Governance in general and Data Value in particular, and have mastered  the skills and methods of empirical research in this emerging field;
  • Will have demonstrated capabilities of defining, designing and implementing appropriate research methodologies with academic integrity and made substantial contribution that extends the knowledge in the field;
  • Be able to communicate concepts and research outputs with their peers and the research community at large and with people outside the field. 

Informal Inquiries can be sent to Dr Rob Brennan (rob.brennan@adaptcentre.ie) or Dr Malika Bendechache(malika.bendechache@adaptcentre.ie)

Minimum qualifications

  • 2.1 or higher primary degree in computer science or an aligned field
  • English language requirements for non-native speakers of English is available here: https://www.dcu.ie/registry/english.shtml

Preferred qualifications

  • MSc or equivalent in computer science or an aligned field

Preferred Skills

  • Strong analytical skills and problem-solving skills;
  • Practical knowledge of modern data management systems e.g. relational databases, graph databases, document stores, metadata, data quality, data governance; 
  • Experience doing  research in any topic;
  • Academic publication track record; 
  • Experience working on collaborative research with industry or other stakeholders; 
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.

Application Process

Submit the following via https://forms.gle/AYoU53L1KNiUDqJn7

  • Cover Letter: A personal letter of motivation, indicating why you wish to conduct this research project offered by ADAPT, and why you expect that you will be able to complete the research successfully for example ; (500 words maximum)
  • Detailed CV: Detailed curriculum vitae, including – if applicable – evidence of strong analytical skills; details of your final year undergraduate or MSc project; project code repositories; practical knowledge of modern data management systems e.g. relational databases, graph databases, document stores, metadata, data quality, data governance; academic publication track record; experience working on collaborative research with industry or other stakeholders; excellent written and verbal communication skills; two academic references.


ADAPT is committed to achieving better diversity and gender representation at all levels of the organisation, across leadership, academic, operations, research staff and studentship levels. ADAPT is committed to the continued development of employment policies, procedures and practices that promote gender equality. On that basis we encourage and welcome talented people from all backgrounds to join ADAPT.