PhD in Computational Mathematics


Program Description

Models, mathematics, statistics, data, and algorithms are the foundations of our digital world. Computational methods and mathematical analysis are increasingly used for simulation, prediction, data evaluation, analysis, risk assessment, development, and optimization, in virtually every field of Science.

The Ph.D. in “Computational Mathematics and Decision Sciences” aims at offering graduate students solid skills in Computational Mathematics, Computational Physics, Scientific Computing, Statistics, Decision Sciences, Optimization, Machine Learning, as well as an interdisciplinary view of Applied Mathematics, Physics and decision processes under uncertainty. The program gives a solid theoretical and computational grounding for high-level research in universities, international research institutions, and industry.

This international Ph.D. program is organized jointly with the Institute of Computational Sciences (ICS) of the Universita della Svizzera Italiana (USI). It is also a multidisciplinary Ph.D. program with Faculty from the Departments of Mathematics, Physics, Computer Engineering, Political Sciences of UniPV and the Fondazione Mondino IRCCS, the IMATI-CNR Institute and the National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN).

Prospective Ph.D. students with a strong mathematical background and a desire for theoretical and applied research in areas of Computational Mathematics and Physics, Scientific Computing, Decision Sciences, and Operations Research, Statistics, Optimization, are encouraged to apply.

Research areas

  • Computational Mathematics: theoretical and computational tools for the Applied Sciences and Engineering
  • Scientific Computing: algorithms for continuous and discrete mathematical models, parallel and distributed computing, numerical simulation
  • Numerical Analysis: numerical methods for ordinary and partial differential equations, an approximation of data and functions, numerical linear algebra
  • Mathematical Analysis and Modeling: ordinary and partial differential equations, functional analysis, variational models and methods, calculus of variations
  • Biomathematics: mathematical and numerical modeling in Biology, Physiology, and Neurosciences
  • Mathematical Physics: kinetic theory, granular media, statistical mechanics, diffusion equations, hyperbolic systems, socioeconomic modeling
  • Computational Physics: mathematical and computational methods in Elementary Particle and High Energy Physics, Monte Carlo methods, quantum computing
  • Biophysics: biophysical models and Monte Carlo methods in Radiotherapy and Hadrontherapy
  • Computational Statistics: Multivariate Statistics, data analysis, Bayesian Statistics, analytical models for Big Data and Data Sciences
  • Decision Sciences: decision models, a decision under uncertainty, risk theory, game theory
  • Optimization and Operational Research: Optimization methods and algorithms, convex, integer, quadratic, and nonlinear programming, Control Theory
  • Machine and Statistical Learning, Deep Learning Big Data Analytics, Bio Data Science


The 3-year Ph.D. program is organized into one and a half year of courses and seminars, followed by one and a half year of research activities leading to the doctoral thesis. Multidisciplinary interchange with other graduate programs in the Ph.D. schools of Pavia, USI Lugano and the other participating Institutes and international partners is also encouraged.

Perspective students follow a personalized program by selecting both core and specialized courses in their field of interest and conducting original research under the supervision of a faculty member.

The Faculty of the Ph.D. in “Computational Mathematics and Decision Sciences” includes internationally well-known scholars in the fields of Computational Mathematics, Physics, Statistics and Decision Sciences.

Career opportunities

The main career opportunities offered by the Ph.D. in Computational Mathematics and Decision Sciences are careers at universities and at public and private research institutions, both in Italy and abroad; employment in industries to carry out research, modeling, data analysis, etc.; employment with consulting and information technology companies; statistical and financial consulting activities; banks and insurance companies

Exam topics

There is no written test.

Admission to the program is based on:

1 qualifications:

  • a) research project (max 2000 words)
  • b) exams (with grades) passed during the candidate’s degree
  • c) 1 reference letter
  • d) abstract of the Master thesis, if available (max 1000 words), publications and preprints
  • e) curriculum vitae

Information provided here does not replace the provisions of the call for applications. Please read carefully the call and its possible additions:

Handbook for applicants and frequently asked questions


  • Application of physical and numerical methods to the quantitative analysis of financial data
  • Boundary element methods for wave scattering by fractals
  • Computational Optimal Transport
  • Deep Generative Models for Person Identification
  • From local decisions to global impacts: diffusions on directed big networks
  • Kinetic and Fokker-Planck equations modeling socio-economic phenomena in multi-agent systems
  • M2M2M: microscopic to mesoscopic to macroscopic modeling and methods, and applications to life sciences
  • Numerical Modeling in Computational Cardiology: ventricular arrhythmogenesis and reentry phenomena
  • Open World Face Recognition
  • Particle-based simulations of cells in health and disease (cancer)
  • Scalable Domain Decomposition Methods for Partial Differential Equations
  • Simulations of cell death and chromosome damage for tumor hadrontherapy

Participation fee

The amount of the participation fee for the academic year is € 156.00. This amount includes:

Regional tax for the right to study: € 140

Duty stamp: € 16,00.

Please note that in the next years the amount of the enrollment fee may change due to a decision of the Administrative Council.

Ph.D. scholarship

Admitted students will receive a PhD scholarship of 16238 euro/year and a research budget of 1500 euro/year for the II and III year.


For more information about the admissions procedures, please visit:

Call for Applications

Last updated Feb 2020

About the School

The University of Pavia is one of the world’s oldest academic institutions: it was founded in 1361 and until the 20th century it was the only university in the Milan area and the region of Lombardy. P ... Read More

The University of Pavia is one of the world’s oldest academic institutions: it was founded in 1361 and until the 20th century it was the only university in the Milan area and the region of Lombardy. Pavia has been a city-campus since its foundation and even today it offers its 24,000 students an experience unique in Italy and rare in Europe: studying at 20 University colleges that are largely independent from the administrative structure of the University. The University of Pavia covers all subject areas and is composed of 18 Departments offering study programmes at all levels, from Bachelor’s degrees to Doctorate programmes Read less
Pavia , Milan + 1 More Less