Fellowship programme

PhD and postdoc

The main objective of the DDSA Fellowship Programme is to attract and educate excellent PhD students and postdocs within data science, achieve scientific excellence and impact, while simultaneously extending the application of data science in relevant scientific domains.

All DDSA scholarships are fixed individual awards to the most promising candidates. Funding young researchers is instrumental to obtaining one of the overarching goals of the DDSA: to increase volume and quality of data science research. Furthermore, fellowship holders will be key participants in the efforts to build a data science community across disciplines.

By focusing on fully funded fellowships, we aim to support visionary data science students that want to pursue their ambitious research ideas at a Danish university.

The programme is dedicated to promoting equal opportunities for all applicants regardless of gender, nationality, background, and geography. Applications will be invited yearly via an open competition call.

The next PhD Fellowship call will open in early October 2022. Please stay tuned on our news here at our website or at LinkedIn or Twitter.

The table below shows the number of full fellowships by year.

  Closed Call Opening Oct’22    
Fellowships 2022  2023  2024 2025 2026
PhD 10 10 10 10 10
Postdoc 6 6 6
Travel 30 30 30 30 30
Visit 30 30 30 30 30


The 2022 call for PhD applications requires that applicants have a full Master’s degree. However, from 2023 an onwards, the DDSA will also welcome applications from Bachelor and Master’s students who wish to integrate their pre-graduate and PhD education (the so-called 3+5 or 4+4 programmes).

Research scope

To be an eligible candidate for the DDSA Fellowship Programme, applicants’ research topics must adhere to either the research scope of the Novo Nordisk Foundation Data Science Initiative (Box 1), or the research scope of VILLUM FONDEN (Box 2):

Box 1: Scientific scope of the Data Science Fellowships financed by the Novo Nordisk Foundation (NNF)

To be eligible for a scholarship financed by the NNF, the research activity must be within the scope of the NNF Data Science Initiative, which covers the following areas:

  • Development of new algorithms, methods and technologies within data science, artificial intelligence (incl. machine learning and deep learning), data engineering, data mining, statistics, applied math, computer science, big data analytics, etc.
  • Applications of data science (as defined above) within the NNF’s scientific focus areas: Biomedical and health science, life science and industrial applications promoting sustainability, as well as natural and technical sciences with potential application in biotechnology or biomedicine.

For projects mainly concerned with methods development, it is important that the applicants argue convincingly for potential application and impact within the Novo Nordisk Foundation’s scientific focus areas. The potential application could be beyond the project period. Vice versa, projects that have their primary focus on the application side must describe and explain the novelty and impact of their data science approach, be it development of novel methods or novel applications of existing methods.

In general, projects without potential applications within the NNF’s scientific focus areas and projects with no novelty in terms of development or application of data science methods will not be eligible for funding.


Box 2: Scientific scope of the Data Science Fellowships financed by VILLUM FONDEN

To be eligible for a scholarship financed by VILLUM FONDEN, the research activity must be within data science or the application of data science to topics in technical science, natural science, humanities or social science or a combination of these. The Foundation is favorably inclined towards applicants coming from other fields and wishing to pursue a PhD within data science. The project may combine a core of computer science with one or more application domains (cf. figure).

Living and working in Denmark

Are you an international applicant?
Most Danish universities have information sites for international staff about living and working as a researcher in Denmark.

See for example:

Aalborg University

University of Aarhus

Copenhagen Business School

University of Copenhagen

University of Southern Denmark

Technical University of Denmark