PhD position vacancy

3D city models for energy applications

Thanks to the steady improvements of 3D data acquisition, processing and integration techniques, semantic 3D city models are becoming increasingly available for a wide range of urban applications, ranging from flood simulation to noise assessment. However, the potential of semantic 3D city models for energy-related applications has only been partially explored. Among the main challenges are:

  1. the integration of highly heterogeneous data, in terms of semantics, spatial (building-block-neighbourhood-city) and temporal (minute-hour-month-year) resolution;
  2. the identification of which features/properties from 3D city models contribute the most to improving energy simulations.

The task of this PhD is to investigate how semantic 3D city models can effectively contribute to enhancing multi-scale, energy-related applications. Within this task the PhD will define methodologies and develop algorithms that, for example:

The precise field of the study will be discussed and agreed upon between the PhD candidate and the supervisors. Cooperation with energy experts from TU Delft or other universities and equivalent research centres is envisioned as part of the job, as is the collaboration with practitioners from governmental institutions and municipalities.

The PhD will take place in the 3D geoinformation group at TU Delft under the supervision of Dr Giorgio Agugiaro and Prof Jantien Stoter. Possibility to spend time as a visiting researcher in other peer institutes (either in the Netherlands or abroad) is also included.

Research group

The 3D geoinformation research group, part of the Delft University of Technology, focuses on the technologies underpinning geographical information systems (GIS), and aims at designing, developing, and implementing better systems to model 3D cities, buildings and landscapes. It is a multidisciplinary group of around 20 people, including computer scientists, geomatics engineers, and geographers; 5 of them are tenured staff (1 professor, 1 associate-professor, and 3 assistant-professor). It has a history of successful collaborations with the industry and the government: its research has led to open source software, standards, and patents for the management of 3D geographic information.

Job requirements

We are looking for highly motivated candidates who hold an MSc degree (or almost completed) in computer science, geoinformatics/geomatics, engineering, or in a related discipline.

They are expected to have a strong interest in 3D city models and energy-related topics, for example, urban energy modelling and simulation.

They are also expected to have good programming skills and a good command of English (oral and written). The interest and ability to interact with experts from different disciplines will be fundamental to carry out the PhD.

The starting date is in consultation with the candidate.

Doing a PhD at TU Delft

At the Delft University of Technology, a PhD student is a full-time employee of the university who gets paid a salary; no extra funding is necessary, and no tuition fees need to be paid. The gross salary is €2,325 per month for the 1st year, going up to €2,972 during the 4th year. TU Delft also offers an attractive benefits package, including a flexible work week and the option of assembling a customised compensation and benefits package. An International Children’s Centre offers childcare and an international primary school. Dual Career Services offers support to accompanying partners. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.

More information about doing a PhD at TU Delft and in the Netherlands can be found here and there.

How to apply

Your application should contain (these should be compiled into a single pdf file named: lastname_firstname_vacancynumber.pdf):

Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Please email your application material to Jeannine Wellink (HR Advisor) ( and refer to vacancy number BK2020-02.

For more information about this position, please contact directly Dr Giorgio Agugiaro (

The 3D geoinformation group currently has also an open PhD position on ‘Automation of urban flow simulations with 3D City Models’. Candidates may apply to both positions with one application (and identify their preference).