Research Fellow (Citizen-Centric AI Systems)

Southampton, United Kingdom
£34,314 to £38,474 per annum
23 May 2023
End of advertisement period
16 Jun 2023
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Agents, Interaction & Complexity

Location:  Highfield Campus
Salary:   £34,314 to £38,474 per annum
Full Time Fixed Term for 24 months
Closing Date:  Friday 16 June 2023
Interview Date:   To be confirmed
Reference:  2141123FP-R

You will work on an exciting 5-year project on citizen-centric AI systems (CCAIS). This is funded via a £1.4M UKRI Turing AI Acceleration Fellowship to support world-leading AI research.

The vision of the project is to develop AI systems with people at their heart. These citizen-centric AI systems learn the preferences of individual users to provide personalised services and advice in important application areas such as smart transportation, energy and disaster response. To ensure trustworthiness, these systems safeguard privacy by learning and making decisions locally, for example on a user's smart device. They also offer clear explanations for their decisions and involve stakeholders through a continuous feedback loop.

You will work on one or both of the following:

  • Explainability in citizen-centric AI: You will design new algorithms and interaction mechanisms that will allow non-expert citizen users to understand and engage with complex AI systems.
  • Incentives in citizen-centric AI: You will consider how to align the incentives of users and stakeholders in complex AI systems to ensure outcomes that lead to socially beneficial outcomes.

You will be part of a supportive and diverse research team. As an example of ongoing impactful work in the project, CCAIS postdoc Dr Elnaz Shafipour has recently been featured in a BCS video series on Net Zero.

The project has the strong support of a consortium of industrial stakeholders, including IBM Research, Jaguar Land Rover and Yunex Traffic. These will interact with you regularly to ensure your work addresses real societal challenges.

To be successful you will have (or are within 6 months of completing) a PhD (or professional qualifications and experience) in computer science, AI or a related topic. You have the ability to publish and present your work at top international venues, and you are passionate about working with stakeholders and users to generate real impact from your research.

Applications will be considered from candidates who are working towards or nearing completion of a relevant PhD qualification. The title of Research Fellow will be applied upon completion of PhD. Prior to the qualification being awarded, the title of Senior Research Assistant will be given.

This role will be offered on a full time, fixed term basis for 24 months. There are two posts available.

About Us

You will join the Agents, Interaction and Complexity group within the School of Electronics and Computer Science (ECS). We are one of the world's leading groups in multi-agent systems, and you will benefit from our significant networks. For example, we lead the UKRI TAS Hub, we are part of the Alan Turing Institute, and we run the MINDS CDT. These centres and networks will provide you with a valuable opportunity to work with researchers and other stakeholders from a wide range of backgrounds.

We highly value diversity in our teams, and we particularly encourage women, Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME), LGBT+ and disabled applicants to apply for this position. ECS is committed to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, and we hold an Athena SWAN Bronze Award. We give full consideration to applicants who wish to work flexibly and those who have taken a career break. The University has a generous maternity policy (subject to qualifying criteria) and onsite childcare facilities.

For informal enquiries, please contact Prof Sebastian Stein (

*Applications will be considered from candidates who are working towards or nearing completion of a relevant PhD qualification.  The title of Research Fellow will be applied upon completion of PhD.  Prior to the qualification being awarded the title of Senior Research Assistant will be given. 

Application Procedure

You should submit your completed online application form at The application deadline will be midnight on the closing date stated above. If you need any assistance, please call Janice Poon (HR Recruitment Team) on +44 (0) 23 8059 2750 or email  Please quote reference 2141123FP on all correspondence.

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