Post-Doctoral Research Assistant - Engineering & Applied Science

Birmingham, West Midlands (GB)
£32,548 to £38,833 per annum
16 Mar 2018
End of advertisement period
13 May 2018
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Post-Doctoral Research Assistant
Engineering & Applied Science
Salary:   £32,548 to £38,833 per annum 
Grade:   Grade 08
Contract Type:   Fixed Term (until 1 May 2021)
Basis:   Full Time 
Closing Date:   23.59 hours BST on Sunday 13 May 2018
Interview Date:   See advert 
Reference:    R180111

“Harmonisation of Behavioural Dynamics of Quasi-Independent Agents of Limited Information”

A three-year postdoctoral position with competitive salary is available in the Systems Analytics Research Institute (SARI) within the School of Engineering and Applied Science at Aston University. The potential candidate has to be skilled, enthusiastic, motivated and dynamic, have a strong mathematical background, and has excellent interpersonal skills to work on an innovative research project funded by the Leverhulme Trust. 
This cutting-edge research project is developing a novel approach to the theoretical understanding and control of Systems of Systems (SoS). The increasing complexity of current and future emergent systems formed by large ensembles of entities introduces more challenging attributes to the study of controlling collective behaviour including: the inherent nonlinearity and nonstationarity of their dynamical behaviour as a collective of coupled stochastic systems; the adaptive co-evolvement of their structures; and the intrinsic decentralization in their interactions. 

The project aims to develop a radically new framework for reliable, robust and responsive control to overcome these challenges of large scale and complex dynamics of SoS. The framework will be based on a hybrid decentralised architecture of mutually-interacting quasi-independent subsystems where some are influenced by control signals and others are consensually harmonised through self-organisation.

The ideal candidate will bring a strong track record in fundamental analysis and application of control theory, distributed and centralized optimization theory and control architecture development toward the design, modelling, and operation of next-generation complex dynamical systems. The candidate should demonstrate extensive experience and leadership in performing advanced mathematics and algorithm development, as well as analytical and simulation studies. 

Required Education, Experience, And Skills

A PhD in an area related to science as well as a first degree in a relevant branch of mathematics, physical sciences or control. This position requires an experienced researcher who is likely to have extensive advanced control theory expertise and a good recent publications record.

Preferred Knowledge and Expertise:

  • Ideal candidates will have a background and expertise in one or more of the following topics:
  • The probabilistic modelling and control design of nonlinear and complex systems.
  • The design of consensus algorithms 
  • Distributed control, 
  • Probabilistic message passing, 
  • The design of multiple controllers for switched systems.
  • Optimisation of nonlinear dynamical systems.

This is an important appointment and an exciting opportunity for the potential postdoc researcher to establish a long-term research presence working in a very exciting research area. The position will be for 3 years in the first instance but the researcher will be expecte to work with Dr Herzallah to generate new funded projects.

For specific enquiries about this position, please contact Dr Randa Herzallah, in the SARI Research Institute, School of Engineering and Applied Science, Aston University, Aston Tringle, Birmingham, B4 7ET, Email:

The next round of interviews will take place on 23 April 2018. Please note that further interviews might take place if we fail to appoint.

Further details:     Job Details

Further particulars and application forms are available in alternative formats on request i.e. large print, Braille, tape or CD Rom.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact HR via

 Aston University is an equal opportunities employer and welcomes applications from all sections of the community.