Postdoc Position in Mathematics for Cinema Applications

The Information and Communication Technology department at Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona, Spain, invites applications for a postdoctoral position in mathematics in the research group “Image Processing for Enhanced Cinematography” ( led by Prof. Marcelo Bertalmío ( The position is funded by the European Commission through its H2020 Programme, and the appointment is for two years with an option for a third. 

Requirements: Candidates should hold a Ph.D. in mathematics, with concentration in applied partial differential equations and calculus of variations, and be proficient in spoken and written English. Knowledge of image processing, optimization and numerical methods is a plus.  

Remuneration: Gross salary is 3,000 EUR per month. This is a very competitive salary given the cost of living in Spain (

Contact: Please send application with CV, publication list, contact information of three references, and a summary of research accomplishments to: marcelo DOT bertalmio AT upf DOT edu

Description of the project
The objective of this project is to develop image processing algorithms based mainly on vision science models that address different challenges in moviemaking, from shooting to exhibition.

Given that in terms of sensing capabilities cameras are in most regards better than human photoreceptors, the superiority of human vision over camera systems lies in the better processing which is carried out in the retina and the brain. Therefore, rather than working on the hardware, improving lenses and sensors, we resort instead to existing knowledge on visual neuroscience and models on visual perception to develop software methods mimicking neural processes in the human visual system, and apply these methods to images captured with a regular camera. We take the same approach when addressing projection/exhibition, developing vision-based image processing algorithms that try to overcome the limitations in contrast and color reproduction that current display systems have. For shooting and post-production we also work on problems such as noise reduction, HDR generation and color stabilization, using in these cases image processing methods based on PDEs.

We also want to translate motion picture know-how into better vision models, then use these models to develop image processing algorithms for cinema postproduction. As it has successfully been proven in the case of paintings, studying the craft of artists can give very profound insights into how vision works. Doing this for movies, where photographic realism can provide a very immersive surrogate for the perception of the real world, we expect to develop improved vision models for contrast and color perception that can be used to automatize filmmaking tasks, optimize results for emerging technologies, and process image content to maintain its appearance constant under changing viewing conditions. Furthermore, these models may open up new horizons in many different fields, having important scientific, as well as industrial and artistic, impact.

Comment/web site for additional job details
Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF, is a public university located in Barcelona. It is the best Spanish university according to the London Times higher education index, 2011, and it's the number one Spanish university in number of ERC grants. The Department of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT, is the best in Computer Science in Spain, according to the Shanghai index 2009. The accreditation Units of Excellence Maria de Maeztu 2016-19 recognizes the units in Spain that perform cutting-edge research and are among the world's best in their respective areas: only 3 university departments are accredited as such in Spain, and ICT-UPF is the only one among technology and engineering.