Call for candidatures : Interdisciplinary PhD in Planning



The UNESCO Chair in Urban Landscape of the University of Montreal is offering a doctoral position which also comprises of a research assistant contract for a specific research project pertaining to the fields of artificial intelligence and urban planning. The chosen candidate will join the UNESCO Chair in Urban Landscape team to pursue a doctorate under the direction of Shin Koseki, UNESCO Chair and assistant professor at the Faculty of Planning – School of Urban Planning and Landscape Architecture. By applying to this doctoral program, the selected candidate will be eligible to obtain scholarships of up to 50 000 $ per year.

Research assistant contract

Starting date: September 1st, 2022

Workload: 15 hours per week during the fall and winter semesters (approx. 34 weeks), 35 hours per week during the summer semester (approx. 17 weeks)

Hourly rate: 24,79$, or according to the rate determined by the convention of the concerned employee’s union (SESUM)

Annualized rate: Approximately 27 000 $, or according to the rate determined by the convention of the concerned employee’s union (SESUM)

Contract period: 12 months, with the possibility of renewal

Place of work: Montreal, Canada


As part of the “AI Assessment of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Public Spaces project“, led by Prof. Shin Koseki and in collaboration with Gauthier Gidel (Assistant Professor at the Department of Computer Sciences and Operations Research at Mila), we are seeking to recruit a person to undertake an interdisciplinary PhD in Planning. The research project aims at creating an AI-based software based on deep-learning methods and Generative Adversarial Networks that is capable of measuring EDI quality levels of Canadian public spaces to increase their social accessibility and define an urban design methodology to operationalize this transformation. The PhD candidate will primarily work on conceptualizing and implementing a participative method of construction of artificial intelligence algorithms adapted to the fields of urban planning and design. Research questions include: What are the current practices relating to the integration of artificial intelligence in the fields of urban planning and design? Where does artificial intelligence currently stand on issues pertaining to the integration of equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) in AI? Where do these EDI issues currently stand in the fields of urban planning and design?

Necessary qualifications

  • Master’s degree in architecture, planning, urban planning, landscape architecture, spatial humanities, geography or equivalent
  • High interest in issues pertaining to equity, diversity, and inclusion in public space
  • Desire to produce high-level doctoral research in those fields
  • Enthusiasm, ability for organization and for working autonomously
  • Perfect knowledge of French AND English (bilingual work and school environment)
  • Knowledge of computer programming or willingness to rapidly learn programming language (Python and/or JavaScript)

Benefits of this position

We provide a diverse, inclusive, and equitable workplace within a dynamic academic setting. The position also benefits from the availability of various resources provided by the University of Montreal and Mila as well as other benefits according to the concerned collective agreement.

For information and application submission

Contact Prof. Shin Koseki :

How to apply

Application deadline: December 31, 2021

Applications should be sent as a single PDF file (max. 10 MB) containing the following documents:

  • Cover letter outlining motivations and career objectives (2 pages maximum)
  • Curriculum vitae (2 pages maximum)
  • Copies of university transcripts
  • Portfolio of past projects and publications (10 pages maximum)
  • Name and contact information of two academic referees