Grant Funded Researcher (B), Improving Out-of-Distribution Generalisation

Adelaide, Australia
$102,952 to $121,779 per annum plus an employer contribution of up to 17% superannuation applies
30 Mar 2023
End of advertisement period
14 May 2023
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

(Level B) $102,952 to $121,779 per annum plus an employer contribution of up to 17% superannuation applies.

There is one 2-year fixed-term position available, with the possibility of an extension, subject to project end-date. Flexible work arrangements can be negotiated with the right candidate.

Be part of the Australian Institute for Machine Learning – the largest computer vision and machine learning research group in Australia – and contribute to world-leading research projects at the Centre for Augmented Reasoning.

The postdoctoral researcher for ‘Improving out-of-distribution generalisation’ will be supervised by Dr Ehsan Abbasnejad and will also involve researchers of the Australian National University. The role will contribute to the centre’s objective to build world-class research capability in machine learning (ML) while demonstrating the potential and impact of this knowledge for industries in Australia.

This research project aims to develop the next generation of ML to be robust, and capable of generalising beyond the ML training to instances that are out-of-distribution (OOD), while avoiding the simplicity bias. This improved generalising will be especially useful for the increasingly complex problems in images, videos and text.

The approach to this research will be:

  1. To access more data by using search engines to retrieve additional multimodal supervisory data to improve the models;
  2. To ensure the underlying generative processes of the data and the corresponding features are incorporated into the model, leading to OOD generalisable gains.
  3. To devise the best evaluation metrics for OOD generalisation

The outcomes of the project will contribute to a next generation of algorithms for vision and language tasks by improving the inference performance.

This exciting role will contribute to the Centre for Augmented Reasoning’s objective to build world-class research capability in machine learning while demonstrating the potential and impact of this knowledge for industries in Australia.

To be successful you will need:

  1. PhD in computer science or related discipline, or equivalent industry experience
  2. Programming experience and expertise in Python and relevant deep learning libraries
  3. Experience and demonstrable expert knowledge in one or more of the following areas: natural language processing, vision-language models, deep learning, applied robotic vision
  4. Track record of publications in top-tier machine learning, computer vision, artificial intelligence and/or robotics conferences and/or journals, commensurate with experience and opportunity
  5. Fluency in written and spoken English, with an ability to communicate scientific ideas to an expert audience

Desirable characteristics:

  1. has the experience and/or ability to contribute to the promotion of research capabilities to industry and the wider community.

Enjoy an outstanding career environment

AIML is Australia’s leading research institute in machine learning and artificial intelligence. AIML’s computer vision research is among the best in the world. With world-leading researchers, modern facilities and an innovative culture, we’re committed to delivering research that is highly valued by our local and global communities. Located at Lot Fourteen, Adelaide, AIML is the largest computer vision and machine learning group in Australia with more than 170 members including academics, research staff, and students. The institute works on a mixture of fundamental and commercially oriented research projects in computer vision and machine learning. Find out more at

The Centre for Augmented Reasoning (CAR) is a $20M investment by the (then) Department of Education, Skills and Employment in people and research to make computers better at interacting with humans so that all technology is easier and safer to use. Managed under AIML, the Centre is supporting Advanced Reasoning research through grants and PhD scholarships, facilitating innovation and rapid commercialisation, and increasing artificial intelligence (AI) literacy and engagement in Australia.

The University of Adelaide is a uniquely rewarding workplace. The size, breadth and quality of our education and research programs - including significant industry, government and community collaborations - offers you vast scope and opportunity for a long, fulfilling career.

It also enables us to attract high-calibre people in all facets of our operations, ensuring you will be surrounded by talented colleagues, many world-leading. Our work's cutting-edge nature - not just in your own area, but across virtually the full spectrum of human endeavour - provides a constant source of inspiration.

Our culture is one that welcomes all and embraces diversity consistent with our Staff Values and Behaviour Framework and our Values of integrity, respect, collegiality, excellence and discovery. We firmly believe that our people are our most valuable asset, so we work to grow and diversify the skills, knowledge and capability of all our staff.

We embrace flexibility as a key principle to allow our people to manage the changing demands of work, personal and family life. Flexible working arrangements are on offer for all roles at the University.

In addition, we offer a wide range of attractive staff benefits. These include: salary packaging; flexible work arrangements; high-quality professional development programs and activities; and an on-campus health clinic, gym and other fitness facilities.

Learn more at:

Your faculty's broader role

As a member of Australia’s G08, the University of Adelaide is recognised as one of the nation’s most respected research-intensive universities, challenging and inspiring graduates to make a real difference. The Faculty of Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) holds an outstanding reputation for teaching, research, and quality graduates. Comprised of eight schools, 21 centres and five institutes, the Faculty of SET is responsible for teaching over 8,500 students across our three campuses, North Terrace, Waite and Roseworthy, and has an annual budget of $300 million. The faculty is a significant contributor to the University’s research reputation, earning annual research revenue above $120 million. Many of our research areas have achieved a world-class research rating of 5 in the 2018 ERA rankings. The faculty is responsible for teaching and research across wide range of disciplines including Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences, Architecture, Biology, Physics, Chemistry and Earth Sciences, Agriculture, Food and Wine and Animal and Veterinary Science. The Faculty of SET is an innovative and agile working environment that champions excellence, diversity and inclusion in our teaching, research, and global engagement leadership.

Learn more at:

If you have the talent, we'll give you the opportunity. Together, let's make history.

Click on the link below to view the Selection Criteria and to apply for the opportunity:

Please ensure you submit a cover letter, resume, and upload a document that includes your responses to all of the selection criteria for the position as contained in the position description or selection criteria document.

Applications close 11:55pm (South Australia time), Sunday 14th May 2023. 

For further information

For a confidential discussion regarding this position, contact:

Dr Richard Harvey
Program Manager, Centre for Augmented Reasoning

You'll find a full selection criteria document below: (If no links appear, try viewing on another device or in a different web browser)

***The University reserves the right to close this advertisement before the closing date if a suitable candidate is identified***

The University of Adelaide is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer committed to providing a working environment that embraces and values diversity and inclusion. Female applicants, people with a disability and/or and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who meet the requirements of this position are strongly encouraged to apply. If you have any support or access requirements, we encourage you to advise us at time of application. 

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