Three open positions in the HITIME project IISG

The ILK Research Group of the Tilburg centre for Creative Computing at Tilburg University, Tilburg, The Netherlands, and the International Institute for Social History, IISH, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, are seeking:

    PhD student
    Vacancy number 500.09.10, 4 years, fulltime

    Post-doc researcher
    Vacancy number 500.09.11, 3 years, fulltime

    Scientific programmer
    Vacancy number 500.09.12, 4 years, fulltime

to form the team for the HITIME ("Historical Timeline Mining and Extraction") project, funded within the CATCH (Continuous Access to Cultural Heritage) programme of NWO, the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research. The HITIME team will be affiliated to Tilburg University, and will be bi-located at IISH and Tilburg University.


Summary of the project

HITIME, "Historical Timeline Mining and Extraction", is a text analytics project applied to history. HITIME aims at the development of a software toolkit for historical text analytics that allows for the conversion of a heterogeneous collection of sources documenting a period in history, such as the tumultuous history of the social and labor movements, into a "historical web of domain knowledge", an associative network of historically relevant entities and their relations, linked to the timeline. This network is browsable and searchable with textually as well as visually oriented interfaces using timelines, maps, and network viewers. Humanities researchers can utilize the interface to obtain answers to questions that now take large, if not unrealistic amounts of human effort to answer.

The large-scale analysis provided by the HITIME toolkit would allow linking between persons, locations, organizations, occupations, and events such as strikes and revolts. The latter category, event detection, will be a major focus: the project aims to forward the state-of-the-art in the automatic detection of events by drawing on and combining insights from entity recognition, paraphrasing, and co-reference resolution. Outcomes of the project will find direct application in social history research into people collectives, and in producing prosopographies (group biographies) and social network analyses.


The Ph.D. student is required to have a honours / M.Sc. or M.A.-degree (or equivalent) in computational linguistics or computer science. He/she has a proven knowledge of and experience with text analytics applications or data mining / machine learning (please send term papers, theses, or project reports). Programming experience is preferred.

The postdoc researcher holds a Ph.D. in computer science or a multidisciplinary field with a strong computer science component, such as computational linguistics or computational history, and has proven experience in databases, data mining, or text analytics, and in software development (as witnessed in project reports, deliverable reports, and/or the Ph.D. thesis). Programming skills are highly desired.

The scientific programmer has a B.Sc. or honours / M.Sc. in computer science (or equivalent). He/she is knowledgeable in software development and has excellent programming skills (C(++), Java, python, perl) and database expertise; preferably knowledge and expertise in data mining.


Applications should include cover letter, CV, and names of two references, and should be sent before the application deadline of April 15, 2009, to, or by regular mail to Human Resource Management, Faculty of Humanities, Room D302, Tilburg University, P.O. Box 90153, NL-5000 LE Tilburg, The Netherlands.

In your letter, please refer to vacancy code:

    500.09.10 - PhD student;
    500.09.11 - Post-doc researcher;
    500.09.12 - Scientific programmer
It is the policy of the university to increase the number of women employed. Also members of ethnic minority groups and handicapped people are expressly invited to apply.

Terms of employment

Tilburg University is rated among the top Dutch employers, offering excellent terms of employment. The collective labour agreement of Tilburg University applies. The selected candidates will get a contract (full-time) for one year, which is concluded by an evaluation. Upon a positive outcome of the first-year evaluation the candidate will be offered an employment contract for the remaining years.

  • The PhD student will receive a starting salary of EUR 2,042 gross per month in the first year, up to EUR 2,612 in the fourth year.
  • The Post-doc researcher will be ranked as a researcher (4) with a starting fulltime salary of minimally EUR 2,379 up to EUR 3,755 gross per month.
  • The scientific programmer position, ranked as developer ICT (4), has a gross monthly salary between EUR 2,492 and EUR 3,422 full time.

Tilburg University

Tilburg University is a modern, specialized university. Its education and research are of high quality. Students and employees experience Tilburg University as an environment in which they are challenged and inspired. Moreover, it offers excellent fringe benefits and a corporate culture in which commitment and cooperation are central themes.

Faculty of Humanities, Department of Communication and Information Sciences, Tilburg centre for Creative Computing

Research and education of the Department of Communication and Information Sciences is organized around the themes of discourse studies, communication and cognition, human-computer interaction, business communication and digital media. The inspiring working environment stimulates its employees to realize their ambitions.

The departement hosts a newly established Tilburg center of Creative Computing (TiCC). It is an inspiring, leading scientific research and education centre that focusses on research into artificial intelligence, human-computer interaction, knowledge access and discovery, and games.


The International Institute of Social History (IISH) collects information in the field of social history and makes it available to the public. The IISH is one of the major scientific heritage institutions in the Netherlands. In the field of socio-economic historical research IISH plays a prominent role.

The Digital Infrastructure (DI) department develops and manages information systems of strategic importance to IISH. The development projects are carried out by cross-departmental teams, with interdisciplinary expertise. They are internationally oriented and focused on practical implementation and embedding in the organisation.


For more information about the project please contact Antal van den Bosch via email ( or telephone (+31.13.466.3117). | Last update: Mon Mar 30 2009