AMBER - enhAnced Mobile BiomEtRics Innovative Training Networks (ITN)


AMBER - enhAnced Mobile BiomEtRics Innovative Training Networks (ITN) H2020-MSCA-ITN-2015 (under contract no 675087)

Project supervisor: prof. dr hab. inż. Andrzej Pacut


Over recent years the ubiquity of mobile platforms such as smartphones and tablets devices has rapidly increased. These devices provide a range of untethered interaction unimaginable a decade previously. With this ability to interact with services and individuals comes the need to accurately authenticate the identity of the person requesting the transaction many of which carry financial/legally-binding instruction. Biometric solutions have also seen increased prominence over the past decade with large-scale implementations in areas such as passport and national ID systems. The adoption of specific biometric sensors by mobile vendors indicates a long-term strategy as a means of authentication. This adoption is is at critical point – users need to be confident of biometrics in terms of usability, privacy and performance; compromise in any one of these categories will lead to mistrust and a reluctance to adopt over and above conventional forms of authentication. The design, implementation and assessment of biometrics on mobile devices therefore requires a range of solutions to aid initial and continued adoption. The EU needs to have experts trained specifically in the field to ensure that it participates, competes and succeeds in the global market. AMBER comprises 11 partners with recognized expertise from across the EU. The specific objectives are to:

  • Address a range of current issues facing biometric solutions on mobile devices requiring timely research and development.
  • Collate Europe-wide complementary expertise to investigate these issues and provide a structure and environment to effectively facilitate training.
  • Train and equip the next generation of researchers to define, investigate and implement solutions, and provide transferable skills to enable effective planning, management and communication of research ideas and outcomes.
  • Develop solutions and theory to ensure secure, ubiquitous and efficient authentication whilst protecting privacy of citizen.


AMBER will comprise ten integrated Marie Skłodowska-Curie Early Stage Researcher (ESR) projects across five EU universities. The Network has the direct support of seven Industrial Partners. For more information on AMBER, see:

The aim of the Network is to collate Europe-wide complementary academic and industrial expertise, train and equip the next generation of researchers to define, investigate and implement solutions, and develop solutions and theory to ensure secure, ubiquitous and efficient authentication whilst protecting privacy of citizens. Details of the project can be found at


Job Offer:


Two Postgraduate training fellowships on biometric solutions on mobile devices leading to the award of a PhD:


Fellowship ESR 5: “Countermeasure algorithms against subterfuge in mobile biometric systems”,

Reference Number ESR 5/2017


Fellowship ESR 6: “Making mobile biometrics more reliable”,

Reference Number ESR 6/2017


Job Details:

Area of deployment: Group of Biometrics and Machine Learning (ZBUM), Institute of Control and Information Technology (IAiIS), the Faculty of Electronics and Information Systems (WEiTI), Warsaw, Poland

Contract status: Marie Curie Fellowship 100%, full-time employment

Salary Scale: Marie Curie Flat Rates

Allowances: social security coverage, eligibility for a family allowance as appropriate.

Date commencing: 01.07.2017 (ESR 5),   01.10.2017 (ESR 5)

Duration of contract 36 Months for ESR 5, 36 Months for ESR 5


AMBER is currently recruiting for 10 PhD positions (i.e. 10 ESRs: Early Stage Researchers) across its 5 sites in 5 European countries. We are recruiting for two positions at the Warsaw University of Technology. The two specific posts (ESR 5 and ESR 6) are to undertake work in the following two areas:


ESR5:  Countermeasure algorithms against subterfuge in mobile biometric systems
Objectives: Mobile devices are typically used in unsupervised environment. Simultaneously, we can observe the trend of utilising these devices in sensitive applications such as retail and mobile payment. This calls for enhanced security techniques that should be implemented to make mobile systems resistant to presentation attacks. The limited capabilities of mobile devices often requires the simplification of data acquisition and processing methodologies. This contradiction leads to devices that are characterised by a lack of appropriate countermeasures against subterfuges, especially presentation of artefacts. This three year ESR research project aims to develop a set of countermeasures dedicated for mobile biometric-based systems possible to realise multimodal recognition. The following biometric modalities are considered, yet are not limited to: iris, face, fingerprints and handwritten signatures. The presentation attack detection (PAD) methods, contrary to typical liveness detection existing today, should incorporate modalities simultaneously, as well as considering static and dynamic features accounting for authenticity of the biometric sample. Different types of PAD-related information should be then concatenated to obtain a final decision. The proposed methodologies will be evaluated in practice since this project assumes implementation on commercially available equipment.
Expected Results: 1) Presentation attack detection methods for single modalities suitable for mobile platforms (two or three out of the following will be investigated by the ESR: iris, face, fingerprint and handwritten signatures). 2) Statistical methodology defined and applied to PAD-related information fusion as well as performance assessment of single and multiple (fused) sources of PAD information. 3) A working prototype demonstrating capabilities of the multimodal presentation attack detection on an example mobile device.
Planned secondment(s): Two secondments would take place within this project. The first is a five month visit to NASK wherein the ESR will gain a practical knowledge on implementation of presentation attack detection techniques and methods for evaluation of biometric security. The second five month secondment would be with UNIROMA (the link ESR will be ESR 4) wherein the ESR would leverage their skills related to fusion of biometric countermeasure information in multi-biometric mobile systems.


ESR6: Making mobile biometrics more reliable 
Objectives: There is an urgent need to ensure that the usability aspects of biometric implementation are optimised for a mobile environment and users, especially considering age (e.g. elderly people, teenagers), capabilities (e.g. disabilities), habituation/familiarity (e.g. technology advocates vs. novices) and technology acceptance (in terms of easiness of use, anxiety and possible relations to criminology). To date there is very little research on the influence of psychological factors of use on biometric reliability, however existing studies report that the ease of interaction with machines significantly influences final effects. During this three year project the ESR will research various aspects of usability of mobile biometric systems. This research includes technological aspects related to robustness of the biometric methods to age factors, namely aging of biometric data as well as age-related impairments in biometric characteristics, and social/psychological aspects related to human-computer interfaces (ease in interfacing with the technology and its acceptance). The ESR will conduct a longitudinal study (with appropriate data collection) related to the biometric aging and interfaces for iris, face, fingerprint and handwritten signatures methods operating on mobile platforms (two or three biometric methods will be selected by the ESR). Aging-related research will include not only the biological source of this phenomenon but also the subject’s capabilities, habituation and trust to the technology gained in time of its usage. This research will provide information for optimal mobile-biometric interfaces leveraging the reliability of biometric recognition in mobile scenarios.
Expected Results: Firstly, we expect to gain a better understanding of how people interact with mobile biometric devices, how this interaction influences the biometric reliability, how this interaction changes in time, what kind of age-related biological factors impacts the system accuracy (both short-term related to daily use, and long-term counted in months or years), and finally how to help people with different technological background and disabilities to use the mobile biometric technologies optimally. The ESR will be responsible for collecting appropriate data spanning at least two-year period (for the same users) and deploying different interfaces that allow for conducting this research. Appropriate interfaces and data processing methods for the selected biometric modalities will be proposed as the final outcome of the project.
Planned secondment(s): Two secondments would take place within this project. The first five month secondment would be with UNIKENT (the link ESR will be ESR 2) wherein the ESR would engage in usability testing of multi-biometric mobile systems leveraging specific expertise in behavioural-biometrics, especially handwritten signature recognition. The second is a five month visit to NASK wherein the ESR will interact with respect to practical statistical methods and tools used for commercial biometric system evaluation.


Key Accountabilities / Primary Responsibilities

Both positions will be research based within the AMSL research group at OVGU.  The primary responsibility will be to undertake the research programme as outlined by the AMBER grant. The post-holder will also:

  • · Interact with the supervisors at Warsaw Technical University and the other members of the consortium, coordinating activity across the consortium
  • · Write regular reports to the supervisor, transform research outcomes into high quality research papers and other project deliverables, communicate the results during regular meetings
  • · Maintain an up to date/detailed log of the research activity undertaken and of the results obtained


Key Duties

The post holder will be expected to undertake the program of work described for WUT as detailed in the work section of the AMBER consortium agreement and grant program. Key duties include:

  • · Progress the research theme with diligence, independently and as part of the wider AMBER consortium, with constant reference to innovation.
  • · Work closely with other researchers in the collaborating network. This may include travel to other sites for short-term research visits, in addition to the planned longer placements (secondments).
  • · Attend and present at AMBER training activities and meetings as outlined in the wider programme, including at national/international conferences relevant to the research.
  • · Undertake the secondments as indicated.
  • · Report on progress regularly to the network and the rest of the research group.
  • · Write up their research findings for publication in leading open access peer-reviewed international journals.
  • · Help plan regular meetings between the network partners and present updates at these meetings.
  • Engage in outreach activities.


  • Timely submit the research reports and articles (four), and industrial recommendations, as outlined in the list of project deliverables
  • Give presentations at the research group seminars meetings
  • Take active participation in project meetings and conferences (3 conferences)
  • Timely submit the Ph.D. thesis

The post holder will also be expected to undertake such other duties, commensurate with the grading of the post, which may be assigned by the grant holder or the Head of University or their nominee.

Requirements for the position:

The ideal candidates will have a strong background in computer science, with clearly identifiable skills in IT security engineering, preferably with experience of biometrics, signal processing and pattern recognition, as well as a strong interest in biometrics and privacy, including their experimental evaluation.

The candidates should have high degree of determination and self-reliance, strong communication skills and be able and must be willing to work in a multidisciplinary environment. The candidates must also fulfil the eligibility requirements.

The candidates, at the time of recruitment shall have not resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies etc.) in the country of their host institution (Poland) for more than 12 months in the last 3 years. Short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.


Person Specification


The person specification on details the necessary skills, qualifications, experience or other attributes needed to carry out the job.  Applications are assessed against each of the criteria either at application or interview stage.  Applications will be deemed unsuccessful if an essential criterion is not met.  This may also help you self-select if you are suitable for the role.



Qualifications / Training

Essential Desirable Assessed via*
A minimum of a Masters degree or equivalent in a relevant subject (e.g. computer science, electronics, mathematics or engineering) ü   A
English language proficiency ü   A, I

No more than 4 years research experience since having been awarded the M.Sc degree  and no Ph.D awarded


ü   A


Experience / Knowledge Essential Desirable Assessed via*
Experience in writing and publishing scientific papers in computer science or other relevant disciplines          ü A, I
Knowledge of pattern recognition and image/signal processing techniques. ü   A, I
Knowledge of security and biometric systems ü   A, I
Strong mathematical and analytical skills ü   I
Extensive knowledge of software development ü   I
Experience of interdisciplinary research   ü A, I


Skills / Abilities Essential Desirable Assessed via*
Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to communicate technical information ü   I
Excellent skills for presenting research results in publications and presentations ü   I
Excellent organisational skills ü   I


Additional Attributes Essential Desirable Assessed via*
Meets eligibility requirements for Marie Skłodowska-Curie Early Stage Researcher positions as defined by the European Commission ü   A
Interest in increasing skills across multiple disciplines within the broad field of mobile biometrics ü   I

*Criterion to be assessed via:

A             = application form or CV/cover letter

I              = interview questions

T             = test or presentation at interview

For further information about the position, please contact Prof. Dr. Andrzej Pacut

Please send your complete application (cover letter, curriculum vitae, references) quoting reference number ESR 5/2017 or ESR6/2017 by 30th of March, 2017 (date of receipt of application) by post (air mail where applicable) and email to the address below:


The Faculty of Electronics and Information Technology,

Warsaw University of Technology
 ul. Nowowiejska 15/19
 00-665 Warsaw

Email: cc:


By submitting an application, the applicant agrees that her/his details will be shared between the partner universities to assist recruitment

Important Note: As well as applying to the Warsaw University of Technology, applicants for this position are requested to send to a single pdf file containing the following:

 (1) CV in the EuroPass format (with list of publications and at least two contacts for reference)

(2) Statement expressing their research interest and plans, and

(3) the desired project(s) and name(s) of host entity (e.g. “WUT” and “ESR5”or“ESR6”).