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Marie Curie Fellowship for Doctorate Candidate (DCs) a.y. 2024-25 - NESTOR project



1 MARIE CURIE FELLOWSHIP FOR DOCTORATE CANDIDATE (DCs) in the framework of the European NESTOR project.


Deadline for application submission: May 21, 2024 at 12.00 p.m. (noon - Italian time)



Connectivity is the major driver in the modern “information society”, where the range of data-driven applications is exploding, and new information-based value chains are rapidly emerging. Optical networks are the backbone of the global communication infrastructure, interconnecting billions of people and a huge number of various autonomous devices, control systems, and machines.

The Doctorate Network NESTOR will answer the How? When? and Where? coherent optical transceiver will be deployed in metro-aggregation optical networks to meet the demand for new cost-efficient solutions. NESTOR harnesses the complementary expertise of top academic groups and core telecom industry, such as Infinera, Coriant (of the Infinera Group), BT, Orange, SM-Optics, VPI and Ericsson). NESTOR will provide Fellows with a uniquely broad education ranging from recent advances in machine learning and artificial intelligence to real-world telecom engineering, which will enable them to design and implement high-capacity access and metro networks.

NESTOR is funded by the European Horizon Europe (HORIZON) Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions Doctoral Networks (MSCA-DN) under Grant Agreement 101119983.

The position open at Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna refers to the following topic:

DC10 – Control of disaggregated networks

Supervisor: Dr. Nicola Sambo


Designing and implementing a control and management plane for disaggregated and vendor-neutral optical networks. Disaggregation and vendor-neutral control and management is expected to reduce capital expenditure. The software from hardware decoupling is a specific example of disaggregation. Together with the definition of vendor-neutral control and management of network devices, disaggregation may enable operators to avoid the vendor-lock-in at the control plane level. This project will propose YANG models for the control and management of the NESTOR network, including devices designed in the other NESTOR Work Packages: low-cost amplifiers, metro aggregators, edge node interfaces, and pluggable devices. In addition to YANG model for devices’ configuration and monitoring, YANG models for “functions” and management procedures (e.g., based on finite state machines) will be proposed with a specific reference to: equalization procedures, recovery, and re-optimization assisted by machine learning. Then, configuration and management procedures will be implemented by relying on the NETCONF protocol, an extended controller, and telemetry apps (for collecting monitoring information streaming). Finally, automated configuration and management (recovery, re-equalization, re-optimization) will be demonstrated in an integrated data and control plane disaggregated testbed.


Among the requirements, each applicant:

  • Must not have obtained a PhD degree yet
  • Did not reside in Italy for more than 12 months in the previous 3 years

Master of Science (MSc) degree or equivalent will be required.

The selection process will account for the knowledge of optical communications and networking, machine learning, software and coding.

The research project must be developed around the DC research title and objectives provided above.

Additional information

  • Benefits: 3-years full time employment contract, allowances
  • Co-supervision by A. Napoli (Coriant R&D, Germany)
  • Planned secondment: 10 months at CORIANT R&D, Munich, Germany, for the training on implementation of transmission models for control of disaggregated optical networks

For information on the scientific content of the research, please contact:

Dr. Nicola Sambo: