Call for applications 1


As of Tuesday May 19th, 2020 applications are now closed

Call for applications
  • Are you interested in research in the area Building Information Modelling?
  • Would you like to join an international research and training network in the area of Cloud-based Building Information Modelling (CBIM)?
  • Do you want to further your career and attain a PhD in one of Europe’s leading Universities in BIM?

The CBIM network, a consortium of European partners with complementary world-leading expertise from academia and industry, is offering 14 fully funded PhD and one Post Doc position for highly talented people who are eligible for study at any one of its partner universities.

Each ESR will be employed full time at one of the CBIM partner universities or at one of the three CBIM beneficiary companies.

Those employed directly by the universities will enrol for PhD study at the same university; those employed by partner companies will enrol at one of the five universities for external PhD studies.

CBIM is funded by the EU Horizon 2020 program under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network call.

CBIM includes multiple leading software and construction industry partners.


CBIM Universities

·      University of Cambridge, United Kingdom

·      University College London, United Kingdom

·      Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Israel

·      Technical University of Berlin, Germany

·      University College Dublin, Ireland

CBIM Companies

·         Trimble Oy, Espoo, Finland

·         LocLab Consulting, Darmstadt, Germany

·         Fundacion CARTIF, Valladolid, Spain




Building Information Modelling (BIM) can provide the context for representing infrastructure assets, including buildings, as digital twins. However, the way BIM is currently understood and used by AEC/FM sector professionals is severely constrained by the narrow view imposed by commercial imperatives and the extent of current imagination. The idea that BIM models can be thoroughly verified through engineering analyses and operational performance simulations before construction, and thus provide the AEC/FM sector – which has never enjoyed the benefits of rigorous prototyping – with rich virtual counterparts, is barely understood. The notion of compiling multi-dimensional models that can support the entire asset lifecycle, and that such models can be mined for data and used for machine-learning, requires a leap of imagination. As a product, CBIM is the rich digital repository of the physical and functional data that describe and define the built facilities across a region, situated in the cloud and available to the various stakeholders – this is the proverbial ‘Digital Twin’. As a process, CBIM involves the generation, management and exploitation of the CBIM product to serve the stakeholders’ needs during design, construction, and operation14 Early Stage Researchers (ESR) will be employed in the CBIM ITN Project. Each ESR will receive comprehensive and multi-faceted training in general and transferable skills, scientific know-how and technical skills by the CBIM joint training programmes that share human and material resources from seven European countries, Israel and the United States. The European partners of CBIM are worldwide leaders in their respective research fields and have immense experience in supervising PhD students coming from different background and countries. This will ensure top-quality supervision at the hosts’ institutes for the ESRs with solid scientific and research pre-requisites. All ESR programmes involve multidisciplinary secondments in both academic and non-academic sectors.

Research topics under CBIM, wrapped up in seven work packages, span from development and implementation of new geometry generation infrastructures based on disruptive technologies, through to data fusion for the enrichment of CBIM geometry to support CBIM process and data


Successful candidates will be employed for a maximum period of three years full-time equivalent and receive a generous financial package plus an additional mobility and family allowance according to the rules for Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) in an EU Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions Innovative Training Networks (ITN). ESRs will be employed by a university OR a partner company; they will also enrol at one of the five CBIM universities.A career development plan will be prepared for each fellow in accordance with his/her supervisor and will include training, planned secondments and outreach activities in partner institutions of the network. The ESR fellows are supposed to complete their PhD thesis by the end of the 3rd year of their employment.For more information please visit the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions Innovative Training Networks website.

Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions Innovative Training Networks (ITN) eligibility criteria apply (summary below, for more detailed information please see here. )

  • All researchers recruited in a Marie Sklodowska-Curie ITN must be Early-Stage Researchers (ESRs). An ESR shall, at the time of recruitment by the host organisation, be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and have not been awarded a doctoral degree.
  • Date of Recruitment normally means the first day of the employment of the fellow for the purposes of the project (i.e. the starting date indicated in the employment contract or equivalent direct contract).
  • Researchers can be of any nationality.
  • There is no age limit.

Researchers are required to undertake transnational mobility (i.e. move from one country to another) when taking up their appointment. One general rule applies to the appointment of researchers: at the time of recruitment by the host beneficiary, researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of their host beneficiary for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the reference date. Note that the mobility rule applies to the beneficiary where the researcher is recruited, and not to beneficiaries to which the researcher is sent or seconded.

  • For all recruitment, the eligibility and mobility of the researcher will be determined at the time of their (first) recruitment in the project. The status of the researcher will not evolve over the life-time of a contract.

Specific requirements for the CBIM network:

  • Applicants must hold a research (thesis) Master’s degree in engineering, architecture or computer science.
  • Each CBIM beneficiary organisation might have additional eligibility criteria, e.g. work/study visa, language or other requirements. These will be clarified in the second stage of the application process.



  • To manage and carry out their research projects within 36 months
  • To write a PhD dissertation
  • To participate in research and training activities within the CBIM network
  • To write articles for scientific peer reviewed journals
  • To participate in meetings of the different CBIM consortium bodies
  • To disseminate their research in the scientific community (international conferences) and non-scientific community, by outreach and public engagement
  • To liaise with the other research staff and students working in broad areas of relevance to the research project and partner institutions.
  • To write progress reports and prepare results for publication and dissemination via public lectures, presentations and the web.

The Marie Sklodowska -Curie programme offers highly competitive and attractive salary and working conditions. The selected candidates are employed with a full-time contract. The salary follows the Marie Curie- Sklodowska ITN funding Scheme. Exact salary will be confirmed upon appointment. It consists of a living allowance plus a monthly mobility and family allowance depending on the family situation. General information is available here (see page 4, Allowances).


Each ESR candidate must first apply to the CBIM network by email (see below). The network will review all applications and refer appropriate candidates to the CBIM beneficiary organisations (universities or companies). The beneficiaries will continue the review process with their appointed candidates, including interviews and application for a PhD degree at the relevant university. Finally, beneficiaries will make employment offers to their chosen candidates.

To begin the process, please first read the descriptions of the ESR project topics that are part of the CBIM work packages, here. These topics are not firmly fixed, and they may change as we all learn more – they are intended as general guidance rather than precise descriptions of what your research may entail. Each topic has a sponsoring partner and an associated PhD university and thesis supervisor – these will not change.

Next, select three topics and rank them in order of preference.

Finally, write a letter of application addressed to Dr. Ilka May, CBIM recruitment coordinator, and Prof. Rafael Sacks, CBIM coordinator. Please send application letters in PDF format by email to Ms. Anat Avital at In your application, you should:

  • introduce yourself, explaining your motivation to join the CBIM network;
  • describe your previous research experience and your best research outputs to date;
  • list your three preferred topics, in order;
  • enclose an updated CV including prior education and all publications;
  • confirm that you meet the criteria for CBIM and for ESRs under the EU rules (here);
  • confirm that you meet the eligibility criteria for PhD enrolment at the university(ies) associated with your preferred topics (you can find more information at the graduate studies websites of each university).


Call for applicants opens 16th September, 2019
Call for applicants closes Applications are now closed
 Interviews and selections by CBIM beneficiaries, including PhD applications for selected candidates From 1st October, 2019
Confirmation of acceptance to CBIM ITN After formal acceptance to PhD program and receipt of a formal offer from a CBIM beneficiary employer
Employment and study start date 1st September or 1st October 2020(depending on beneficiary and PhD enrolment)

The positions are expected to start in Autumn 2020.
Thus, if you expect to complete your MSc next summer, you are welcome to apply!



Work Package 1: Advanced Techniques for Generating & Updating CBIM geometry

Objectives: Development of new geometry generation architectures that will give rise to a new generation of as-is BIM authoring tools capable of self-generating as-is models on the cloud with minimal user intervention.

Description: There is a need for cost-efficient and automated methods for generating Digital Twins of existing assets. This work package will look into the following three major challenges in this context:

  • Large-scale, infrastructure asset object detection, based on cascaded deep learning architectures that borrow knowledge from asset design priors and online learning strategies,
  • Detect object relationships, based on two primary strategies: rule-based inferencing and machine learning with sparse data sets
  • Definition of geometrical concepts, parametric geometry, and generated geometry based on parameters

 The following early-stage researchers (ESR) are related to WP1:
Fellow: ESR 1

Fellow: ESR 2
Fellow: ESR 3
Fellow: ESR 4


Work Package 2: New Methods and Tools for CBIM enrichment

Objectives: Enriching the basic geometric CBIM with design, construction and operations data to facilitate building energy performance simulation and facilities management.

Description: Over the course of a building’s life cycle, the geometric and non-geometric information needed by downstream stakeholders such as facilities managers, energy modellers or building automation specialists is typically unavailable, incomplete or in the incorrect format. A critical issue is that such downstream stakeholders typically receive data without adequate input at an earlier point in the overall process. With the required information in place, each stakeholder could automate repetitive tasks and domain processes. This work package will look into the following three major challenges in this context:

  • Enriching the geometric BIM using Building Automation Systems (BAS) data will focus on integrating the BIM and BAS domains
  • BIM-based data requirements for Facilities Management (FM)
  • Enriching the geometric BIM for Building Energy Simulation (BES)

 The following early-stage researchers (ESR) are related to WP2:

Fellow: ESR 5
Fellow: ESR 6
Fellow: ESR 7


Work Package 3: CBIM Data & Process Management

Objectives: Establish the business process fundamentals for seamless information management of digital twins. This work package will provide templates and process patterns to support data capturing, enrichment, and exchange throughout the life-cycle of a project in support of best-practice CBIM business processes.

Description: More and more BIM models are becoming readily available to support design, construction, and maintenance tasks. This availability will lead to significant changes in business processes. To make use of the models, managers and engineers will work within distributed data environments and service-oriented architectures that are combined in digital twin-based applications. Practice will move from multi-purpose desktop applications to web-enabled micro-service architectures. This work package will anticipate these dynamics by developing applicable frameworks, process guidelines, and solutions that public and private organisations can readily apply to move their business process and ICT strategies to enable CBIM practice. This work package will look into the following three major challenges in this context:

  • Establishing the most important CBIM business process patterns that are recurring on projects
  • Providing CBIM data life-cycle management solutions while considering through-life asset management requirements
  • Blockchain-enabled CBIM for life-cycle data provenance and operational effectiveness

 The following early-stage researchers (ESR) are related to WP3:

Fellow: ESR 8
Fellow: ESR 9
Fellow: ESR 10


Work Package 4: CBIM applications and technology transfer

Objectives: Develop new applications and investigate how Academic Entrepreneurs (AE) in CBIM refine their business concept and orchestrate their resources, in collaboration with internal and external stakeholders, during the initial stages of the technology transfer process

Description: Societal and industrial awareness and interest in new technologies are only possible through their application in real-world scenarios. This is especially important in the Building & Construction sector. The Building Construction & Operation industries are highly fragmented when compared to other sectors like automotive and aerospace. Most professionals are working in smaller companies; this is also true for the software industry for this sector. There is not one large constructor, software party or client that dictates the market. It is for this reason that the role of vendor-independent open standards is of the essence, while the capabilities and potential of BIM are yet unknown to many end-users, clients, professionals and software companies. The validation of the methods proposed in field applications highlighting their potential positive economic impact is indispensable for further development. This work package will look into the following three major challenges in this context:

  • Photorealistic BIM generation and transfer into 3D worlds using games technology
  • Cloud-enabled BIM
  • Establishing data standards for streamlined support of CBIM supported business processes

The following early-stage researchers (ESR) are related to WP4:

Fellow: ESR 11
Fellow: ESR 12
Fellow: ESR 13
Fellow: ESR 14



ESR Timeline (PDF)