PhD Student / Developer in Web Programming Languages

The TU Delft Department of Software Technology has an open position for a PhD student / Developer in the Programming Languages group in the area of Web Programming Languages.

The starting date for the position could be as soon as September 1, 2022.

Job Description

The Spoofax team at TU Delft is pursuing a broad research program to develop a language workbench that supports high-level declarative language definition, the generation of programming environments (including editors, parsers, type checkers, and interpreters/compilers) from language definitions, and the (automated) verification of properties of language definitions and their implementations.

One line of research is the application of Spoofax in the domain of web programming with the goal to develop high-level abstractions that improve the productivity of web programmers and at the same time increase the reliability of the appplications they develop. The result of this research is consolidated in the WebDSL web programming language.

In addition to developing WebDSL, the Academic Workflow Engineering (AWE) team at TU Delft applies the language in practice in a series of production web applications aimed to improve workflows in academia. Currently, the application portfolio includes the following applications:

We are seeking a PhD student/Developer to join the AWE team to further explore the theory and application of web programming languages and to contribute to the development of the applications.

This position combines PhD research with development and therefore lasts six years instead of the standard four years.

We are looking for a versatile candidate who can contribute to the development of theoretical foundations, language design and implementation, and the development of applications.


We are looking for an excellent candidate with the following qualifications, knowledge, and skills:

  • A master’s degree (or equivalent) in computer science

  • A strong and demonstrable interest in web programming, web program languages, and language engineering, including experience with language engineering topics such as compiler construction, type checking, and definitional interpreters.

  • A strong commitment to research: turn insights about programming languages and software development into generalizable and elegant theory and solutions; investigate the state-of-the-art/literature; evaluate ideas and solutions against relevant and motivating examples from software engineering practice.

  • A strong commitment to turning theory into software and demonstrable software engineering skills (with object-oriented and functional programming languages) to realize that.

  • Independent, self-motivated, reliable, and eager to learn.

  • Ability to work in a project team and take leadership and responsibility for different research tasks.

  • An excellent command of English and good academic writing and presentation skills.

Conditions of Employment

Fixed-term contract: 5 years.

TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. 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: Gross salary PhD student ranging from € 2.395,– (1st year) to € 3.061,– (4th year) per month, plus holiday allowance (8%) and end-of-year bonus (8.3%).

As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment; an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor; and a Doctoral Education Programme aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills. Please visit for more information.

The Organization

The Programming Languages Research Group is an internationally leading research group in programming languages, and active in areas such as language engineering, language design, domain-specific languages, software verification, and program logics. The section employs over 15 people, including academic staff, around 10 PhD students, and two postdoctoral researchers. The group is responsible for programming and programming languages education at the bachelor and master’s levels in the TU Delft Computer Science curriculum.

The Software Technology (ST) Department is one of the leading Dutch departments in research and academic education in computer science, employing over 150 people. The ST Department is responsible for a large part of the curriculum of the bachelor’s and master’s programmes in Computer Science as well as the master’s programme Embedded Systems. The inspiration for its research topics is largely derived from technical ICT problems in industry and society related to large-scale distributed processing, embedded systems, programming productivity, and web-based information analysis.

The Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science (EEMCS) is known worldwide for its high academic quality and the societal relevance of its research programmes. Offering an international working environment, the faculty has more than 1100 employees (including about 500 PhD students) and more than 3000 bachelor’s and master’s students. Together they work on a broad range of technical innovations in the fields of electrical sustainable energy, microelectronics, intelligent systems, software technology, and applied mathematics.

Additional Information

For more information about this position see the website and contact Eelco Visser.

To apply, please send your application letter by e-mail as soon as possible to Eelco Visser

All applications should include a PDF attachment with:

  • an application letter, including a statement of research interests that demonstrates an understanding of the project topic
  • a detailed CV (including list of publications if available)
  • a list of courses taken and grades obtained
  • a copy or link to your Master’s thesis
  • contact details of 2-3 references