A researcher in the field of Formal Methods for the Embedded Systems Research Unit (ES)

The Embedded Systems Research Unit (ES Unit) of the Information and Communication Technology Center of the Bruno Kessler Foundation (FBK-irst), Trento, Italy consists of about 25 people, including researchers, post-docs, PhD students, Master Students, and programmers. The Unit carries out basic and applied research, tool development and technology transfer in the field of automated planning for different application contexts, and design and verification of embedded systems.


Current research directions include:


  • Formal Verification of complex embedded systems using model checking techniques;
  • Formal Safety Analysis, based on the integration of traditional (e.g. Fault-tree analysis, FMEA) with symbolic verification techniques;
  • Contract-based engineering and contract-based formal verification of aerospace systems using model checking techniques;
  • Contract-based techniques for fault detection, identification and recovery relying on model checking techniques;
  • Formal Requirements Analysis based on techniques for temporal logics (consistency checking, vacuity detection, input determinism, cause-effect analysis, realizability and synthesis);
  • Satisfiability Modulo Theory, and its application to planning and scheduling, verification of hardware, embedded critical software, and hybrid systems (Verilog, SystemC, C/C++, SCADE, StateFlow/Simulink);
  • Model based planning and scheduling for aerospace and robotic (drone) systems, for the management of autonomous vehicles, drones for exploration in critical environments, factory automation, and for process optimizations (with applications in Industry 4.0), leveraging model checking and satisfiability modulo theory techniques;
  • Model based on-board autonomy for different vehicles (AUV, ROV) using planning and scheduling techniques;
  • Model based recovery relying on planning and scheduling techniques;
  • Combination of machine learning and symbolic reasoning for predictive maintenance.


More information about the ES Unit is available at http://es.fbk.eu/.



Job Description


The ES Unit has an opening for a PostDoc position in the field of formal verification for industrial applications with the focus on several research and technology transfer projects. The successful candidate will be employed for a period of at least two years (with a trial period of 6 months). He/She will carry out research activities in the field of formal verification and safety assessment applied to the design and implementation of complex industrial size safety critical systems. The candidate is expected to perform activities related to the following research topics:


  • Declarative languages for to contract-based design and safety assessment;
  • Design and implementation of scalable formal verification techniques for the verification of temporal properties, to be applied in industrial settings for the design and verification of complex industrial safety-critical systems (e.g. railway domain, avionic domain);
  • Design and implementation of formal verification techniques for hybrid systems with non-linear dynamics, to be integrated in standard industrial design and verification environments (e.g. CHESS, SCADE, Matlab-Stateflow-Simulink);
  • Design and implementation of a contract-based framework for compositional verification of  systems based on the properties of components, and of a framework for the automatic synthesis of monitors to ensure that local/global properties are satisfied;
  • Design and implementation of a contract-based safety assessment framework that will allow for the generation of fault-trees, FMEA tables, and reliability measures in a compositional fashion, leveraging on local component results.


The candidate is expected to work in collaboration with other researchers, programmers, and students involved in the project. Moreover, the candidate is expected also to interact with industrial partners and to spend some time at industrial partner premises.


Job requirements

The ideal candidate should have:

  • PhD in computer science, mathematics or electronic engineering (to be completed within mid 2019);
  • Software development skills (preferably in C, C++, Python or Java);
  • Ability to carry out an independent research program;
  • Ability to work in a collaborative environment and deliver in research projects and possibly in industrial projects;
  • Oral and written proficiency in English


Additional requirements:


In depth previous experience in at least one of the following areas:

  • Solid background in logic
  • Temporal Logics and Property Specification Languages
  • Contracts and Interface Theories
  • Formal Specification and Analysis of Architectures and Model Based Reasoning
  • Formal Model-Based Safety Analysis (e.g., automatic generation of fault trees, reliability metrics)
  • Symbolic (Software) Model Checking
  • Satisfiability Modulo Theory



Type of contract: Fixed Term Contract (research profile CCPL)

Gross annual salary: about € 39.300

Working hours: full time 

Start date: January 2019

End Date: December 2020

Workplace: Trento – Povo

Benefits: flexi-time, company subsidized cafeteria or meal vouchers, internal car park, welcome office support for visa formalities, accommodation, social security, etc., reductions on bank account opening fees, public transportation, sport, language course fees.

More info at https://www.welfarefbk.info/



Candidates must submit their application by clicking "Apply online" at the bottom of this page. Please make sure to enclose the following documents with your application (pdf format):

  • Detailed CV
  • Cover Letter (explaining your motivation for this specific position)
  • 3 professional references (e-mails and/or phone numbers)


Application deadline:  20th December 2018


Please read our Regulations on the recruitment and selection of fixed-term personnel (effective from October 15, 2018) before completing your application. 


For further administrative information, please contact the Human Resources Services at jobs@fbk.eu


For technical inquiries about the position, send an e-mail at es-info@fbk.eu.




Business units
Europe/Italia/Trento - Povo
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