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Connectivity within network processes and coupling with global flows (ESR 11)

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  • Full or part time
    Dr L Liu
    Dr A Ioannides
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About This PhD Project

Project Description

The brain structure and function are naturally modelled as networks with cytoarchitectonic areas and deep brain nuclei represented as nodes and the white matter or some measure of functional connectivity as edges in a graph. This project will add to the increasingly popular network model of the brain the coupling to the global electrical current flow generated by the collective neuronal activity. This model will be tested using Magnetoencephalography (MEG) and electroencephalography (EEG) data. The ESR will test two hypotheses:

- passive flow of electrical current interacts with the processing based on the network of white matter connections
- this interaction has consequences for normal activity in awake state and sleep and possibly in pathology. The transferability of connectivity techniques and ideas will utilise results of other projects where the interaction between global flow and network activity is evident, e.g. ecogeomorphology of dryland and/or fluvial environments.

Objectives


- To model network-based and continuous flows and their interactions so that the influence of each component in specific and possibly diverse applications can be estimated quantitatively and in terms of meaningful visualizations and time-dependent connectivity.
- To describe spatiotemporal brain network activity, using MEG and EEG data.
- Document similarities between processes in the brain and in other fields and explore how these can be generalized so they can be applied to other disciplines.
- Review trends in connectivity-based biomarker development with few channel EEG and related IPR issues and relevance to results of the project.

Expected Results


- Understanding the universality of changes in network topology driven by time-ordered events leading to
- unifying the methodology for quantitatively describing network and global properties, dynamics and transitions generated by internal and external influences of finite duration and
- through this analysis showing how the relevant parts of a network are “seen” from the point of view of one of the components of the system (node or edge), or
- from the point of view of transferability of concepts and approaches between apparently unrelated disciplines sharing some common graph theoretical description.
- The ESR will prepare a report and a training material for other ESRs on current efforts of developing connectivity based biomarkers with emphasis on the use of few channel EEG and related IPR issues.

Benefits


Marie Sklodowska-Curie PhDs are paid a competitive gross salary of 3,270 € per month, adjusted for their host country, a Mobility Allowance of 600 € per month and, for researchers who have a family, a Family Allowance of 500 € per month. All amounts are subject to employers and employees deductions and taxes.

Family is defined as persons linked to the researcher by (i) marriage, or (ii) a relationship with equivalent status to a marriage recognised by the national legislation of the country of the beneficiary or of nationality of the researcher, or (iii) dependent children who are actually being maintained by the researcher; family status is determined at recruitment and does not evolve.

ESRs will also get access to funds covering Research, Networking and Training costs. ESRs will also be enrolled for PhD studies at institutions which are part of the consortium. Funding will cover the entire 36-month period. In addition to individual scientific projects, all fellows will benefit from further continuing education, which includes internships and secondments, a variety of training modules as well as transferable skills courses and active participation in workshops and conferences.

Eligibility criteria


To satisfy the eligibility requirements set for an Early Stage Researcher funded by Marie Skłodowska-Curie and you must be eligible to be appointed as an Early Stage Researcher:

Should have — at the date of recruitment — less than 4 years of a research career, and not have a doctoral degree. The 4 years are measured from the date when they obtained the degree which would formally entitle them to embark on a PhD, either in the country where the degree was obtained or in the country where the PhD is provided.

Trans-national mobility: The applicant — at the date of recruitment— should not have resided in the country where the research training takes place for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to recruitment, and not have carried out their main activity (work ,studies, etc.) in that country. For refugees under the Geneva Convention (1951 Refugee Convention and the 1967 Protocol), the refugee procedure (i.e. before refugee status is conferred) will not be counted as ‘period of residence/activity in the country of the beneficiary’.

Satisfy the eligibility requirements to enrol on a PhD degree. This includes acceptable English language requirements if English is not your first language.

Selection process
All applications are to be submitted via the hosting institution.

Applications must include the following:

A copy of your CV
Degree transcripts
A motivation letter
Names of 2 referees

Please indicate in your motivation letter if you are interested in being considered for any of the other PhD positions in our network (and if you give us permission to share your application with the host of that project).


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