PDEng in Urban Mobility Observatory

University of Twente


Job description

Are you passionate about technology and the fast pacing technological advances in the field of mobility and open data? Do you want to continue developing your skills with a combination of education and work? The Professional Doctorate in Engineering (PDEng) programme offers you a 2-year position combining post MSc education and a design project to be carried out at the University of Twente. The educational programme will have an in-depth and broadening character with ample attention for professional development. The design project will be part of the Urban Mobility Observatory (UMO) project that will combine and integrate state-of-the-art techniques in data collection, data storage and data processing for applications within the mobility domain. As part of the UMO project, you will collaborate with a broad team of researchers and technicians from eight universities and research institutes in the Netherlands.

In UMO you will work on high level, creative new designs for complex issues. In this project specific attention will be given to portable sensors, namely overview cameras, Starlight (HD) cameras, radars, iBeacons, Bluetooth stations and Wi-Fi sensors. In this PDEng project, the sensor data will consist of 1500 Wi-Fi access points from the UT campus. The objective of this PDEng project is twofold: (i) collect, process and store the Wi-Fi data according to the Open Access requirements of UMO; (ii) integrate the Wi-Fi data with other mobility data sources, such as the time schedules of public transport lines, to improve the planning of mobility services.


Fast pacing technological advances have resulted in an influx of sensor data. The potential of such data is, however, not exploited in full. Current issues include the development of algorithms that can anonymize the data and make it GDPR-compliant and the design of new applications that can use the anonymized data to provide better services. Designing new mobility applications or improving the operations of existing ones with the use of newly available data poses a specific technical challenge that will be addressed in this PDEng project.

Technical challenges include the development of algorithms that will anonymize user-specific Wi-Fi data, the development of data processing tools, and the design of planning tools that can improve the operations of existing mobility services. Specific design challenges that arise from this problem are:

  • Processing and analysis of Wi-Fi data
  • Anonymization of personal data (following GDPR standards)
  • Fusion of data from multiple sensors to enable its use to mobility applications
  • Design of improved services with added value (e.g., new public transport plans)

The aim of this design project is to:

“Collect, store, anonymize, process and integrate Wi-Fi data with other mobility data sources for designing improved transport services”

The expected outcome of the approach is:

  • Store Wi-Fi data in an open access environment after ensuring its anonymization and the compliance to GDPR regulations
  • Design of new mobility plans based on the integration of multi-sensor data

In the course program you get a customized education package consisting of, among others, courses in decision-support system design, computer science, systems engineering & design, machine learning, operations research, statistics, data ethics, and asset management.

Your profile

We are searching for the best MSc graduate with a strong affinity with design and multidisciplinary assignments. Besides, you have the ambition and talent to accelerate in finding solutions / crafting designs for complex technological problems with a multidisciplinary character. Important professional skills are

  • English language skills;
  • Communication and interpersonal skills, teamwork, initiative and self-reflection;
  • Prior knowledge in computer science, scheduling, and transport planning are useful for you to successfully complete the project.


If you have any further questions about this vacancy of the PDEng programme, please contact Prof. Dr. Ir. Maarten van Steen at m.r.vansteen@utwente.nl or Dr. Ir. Konstantinos Gkiotsalitis at k.gkiotsalitis@utwente.nl. General information about PDEng programmes you can find at http://www.utwente.nl/pdeng/ or http://www.utwente.nl/pdeng/en/

Please send your application, with a curriculum vitae, a list with grades of courses attended, references and, if applicable, a list of publications you may have, through the button below, before February 1st, 2020. You can upload a maximum of 3 documents.

Our offer

You will be employed by the University of Twente with a contract for 24 months and a salary of € 1913,- per month. During these two years you follow a tailor made post-master design programme with a combination of education (50%) and working on a design project (50%) for which you are located at the University of Twente. Additionally, the UT provides excellent facilities for professional and personal development, a holiday allowance and an end-of-year bonus. On successfully completing the programme, you will receive a certified and recognized degree. You will be entitled to use the academic degree PDEng and will be registered as a Technological Designer in the Dutch register kept by the Royal Institution of Engineers in the Netherlands (KIVI).

The organization

The University of Twente. We stand for life sciences and technology. High tech and human touch. Education and research that matter. New technology which leads change, innovation and progress in society. The University of Twente is the only campus university of the Netherlands; divided over five faculties we provide more than fifty educational programmes. We have a strong focus on personal development and talented researchers are given scope for carrying out groundbreaking research.

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status or disability status. Because of our diversity values we do particularly support women to apply.

The Faculty of Engineering Technology (ET)
 is one of the five faculties of the University of Twente. ET combines Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering and Industrial Design Engineering. Our faculty has approximately 1800 bachelor and master students, 400 employees and 150 PhD candidates. The departments of the faculty cooperatively conduct the educational programmes and participate in interdisciplinary research projects, programmes and the research institutes: Mesa+ Institute, TechMed Centra and Digital Society Institute.

In your application, please refer to Professorpositions.com


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