Umeå universitet, Department of Computing Science

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The Department of Computing Science at Umeå University ( is seeking an outstanding candidate for a post-doctoral researcher position in Context Based Machine Learning for Autonomous Systems, including Artificial Intelligence methods for explaining and justification of learned behavior.

The last date for application is 2018-01-08.

The recruited postdoc will be part of the Wallenberg Autonomous Systems and Software Program (WASP, ). The WASP program is Sweden's largest individual research program ever, and provides a platform for academic research and education, fostering interaction with Sweden's leading technology companies. The program addresses research on autonomous systems acting in collaboration with humans, adapting to their environment through sensors, information and knowledge, and forming intelligent systems-of-systems. WASP's key values are research excellence and industrial relevance.

Project description
The research team’s high-level vision is to develop ground-breaking Data Science methods for Autonomous Systems that learn from data and experience and that can justify and explain their behavior. This kind of systems are sometimes described using the term Self-* capable Intelligent Products and Environments, where Self-* signifies self-configuring, self-organizing, self-tuning, self-healing, self-managing systems, and self-explaining systems. Future work is expected to have a significant role in the development of such Self-* systems through IoT-enabled remote monitoring and updating over standardized interfaces, together with novel machine learning methods and algorithms are the main technical enablers of such systems.

Your research will focus on one or several of the following key topics:

  • Use principles of reinforcement learning and related technologies targeted towards self-learning and adaptive control. Emphasis would be on augmenting the product intelligence embedded in products so that they can auto-adapt themselves according to their operating conditions, communicate with other products and adapt to them, as well as access and use external information systems that are relevant to them.
  • Autonomous agents and multiagent systems for implementing Cyber-physical systems (CPS) in a Systems of Systems (SoS; see e.g. setting. CPS also takes into consideration the human factor, as well as society as a whole.
  • Modeling and learning of user and decision-maker actions and preferences in different contexts using non-linear machine learning methods such as neural networks. A challenge with such models is how they can justify their actions and recommendations, and how robust they are in different situations. This is particularly relevant and challenging for autonomous systems whose “intelligence” is based on machine learning and is therefore not directly explainable and understandable by humans.

The research will be performed jointly with senior researchers and PhD students in the group, as well as with our national and international collaboration partners. Coordination tasks within large-scale projects may also be included.

The appointment is for two years full-time employment. The employment will start 2018-04-01, or as otherwise agreed. The position comes with a competitive salary and (non-mandatory) opportunities for teaching (up to 20% of full-time).

Applicants must have earned a PhD or a foreign degree that is deemed equivalent to a PhD in Data Science or a related subject relevant for the position. The PhD degree should not be more than three years old by the application deadline unless special circumstances exist.

Insights into artificial intelligence, machine learning, and distributed multi-agent systems are required. Strong research merits and excellent publications in the area of the position are highly meriting. Demonstrated skills in cognitive sciences, psychology, or software development are also considered merits. Ideal candidates should also be research driven, organized, and like to work with challenging problems and innovative solutions. Proficiency in English, both spoken and written, is required.

A complete application should include:

  • Introductory letter including a 2-page statement of research interests relative to the above topics and a motivation of why your expertise is appropriate for the position
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV) including a complete list of scientific publications
  • Copies of degree certificates, including documentation of completed academic courses and obtained grades
  • A copy of your PhD thesis, and copies of (max 5) original research publications relevant to the above topics, numbered according to the publication list.
  • Names and contact information for three persons willing to act as references
  • Any other information relevant for the position such as description of software development experience, or previous industry experience.

Please observe that all material needs to be in Swedish or English. If material is submitted in other languages a translation to Swedish or English must be included.

Welcome with your application

Applications must be submitted electronically using the e-recruitment system MyNetwork Pro, and be received no later than January 8, 2018. Reference number AN 2.2.1-1807-17.

Further information
For further information, please contact (primarily) Professor Kary Främling,, phone: +358-(0)50-5980451.

More information about our university can be found at

Type of employment Probationary period
Contract type Full time
First day of employment 2018-04-01 or as otherwise agreed
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Working hours 100%
City Umeå
County Västerbottens län
Country Sweden
Reference number AN 2.2.1-1807-17
  • Kary Främling, professor, +358 (0)50-5980451
Union representative
  • SACO, 090-786 53 65
  • SEKO, 090-786 52 96
  • ST, 090-786 54 31
Published 13.Nov.2017
Last application date 08.Jan.2018 11:59 PM CET

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