Job ID: 61898

PhD in Neurosciences (Marseille France) : Probabilistic control of smooth eye movements in human and non-human primates

Position: Ph.D. Student

Deadline: 31 December 2021

Employment Start Date: 1 December 2021

Contract Length: 36 months

City: Marseille

Country: France

Institution: Institut de Neurosciences de la Timone (CNRS & Aix-Marseille Université)

Department: Team INVIBE (Dr Guillaume S Masson)


Probabilistic control of smooth eye movements in human and non-human primates

One PhD fellowship is offered to work on pursuit eye movements and probabilistic decision-making. This position is part of a collaborative project (PrioSens) between Marseille (Dr Guillaume MASSON) and Austin (Pr Nicholas PRIEBE) co-funded by the French Agence Nationale de la Recherche and the US NIH-NIMH (CRCNS Program). PrioSens aims at understanding how uncertainties about future target motion trajectories are mapped into anticipatory smooth eye movements. The project combines behavioral, neurophysiological and brain imaging approaches in both human and non-human primates (marmosets monkeys). During his/her PhD, the fellow will conduct eye movement studies in both human healthy volunteers and marmosets. The objective is to develop and test smooth pursuit tasks in humans first before transferring to marmoset monkeys for electrophysiology (Marseille) and 2photon imaging (Austin) of prefrontal cortices. Combining human and animal approaches shall lead to several publications.

He/She will complete his/her PhD under the supervision of Dr Guillaume S MASSON and Dr Guilhem IBOS at the INVIBE team of the Institut de Neurosciences de la Timone (Marseille, France) in collaboration with Dr Anna MONTAGNINI..

Candidates should:

  • Hold a degree in Neurosciences, Experimental Psychology, Cognitive Science or Computer Sciences (and related disciplines). Strong skills in programming (e.g. Matlab, Python) and data analysis will be a plus.
  • Have genuine interest in biological vision and eye movements, mixing behavioral and physiological approaches in human and animal research.
  • Be able to communicate in English.

The INVIBE team (Dr Guillaume MASSON) offers a multidisciplinary atmosphere and international contacts to work on visuomotor behaviors and their interactions with cognitive processes (attention, decision-making) in both humans and monkeys. The team has a strong expertise in eye movement studies and launches a new research program on functional MRI and TMS. The team is made of 5 CNRS researchers, several PhD students and post-doctoral fellows. It runs several experimental set-ups with similar state-of-the-art eye movements set-ups (Display++, EyeLink1000) in both species. A dedicated set-up for marmoset electrophysiology and behavior is fully available such that the project can start immediately.

The Institut de Neurosciences de la Timone (CNRS & Aix-Marseille Université) is one of the largest CNRS research Institute for brain research ( Hosting 13 research teams, its scientific endeavor is to bring together multiple scales approaches of brain functions, from molecular biology to cognitive and behavioral sciences. It provides a strong interdisciplinary environments with access to state-of-the-art technological platforms. The candidate will integrate the NeuroSchool PhD Program of Aix-Marseille Université which organizes post-graduate studies in Neurosciences with theoretical courses and soft skills.

Salary is 17988€/year (net salary, before revenue taxes) will full social benefits including health care. Starting date is immediate.


How to apply: Candidates should send a 1 page statement about research interests and motivation, a complete CV with Grades obtained at the MsC Diploma and, when possible, 2 letters of recommendation to Dr Guillaume MASSON ( and Dr Guilhem IBOS (