TU Delft

PhD Position Interactive Machine Reasoning for Responsible Hybrid Intelligence

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University of Twente

We stand for life sciences and technology. High tech and human touch. Education and research that matter. New technology which leads change, innovation and progress in society. The University of Twente is the only campus university of the Netherlands; divided over five faculties we provide more than fifty educational programmes. We have a strong focus on personal development and talented researchers are given scope for carrying out groundbreaking research.

The faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science (EEMCS) at University of Twente comprises three disciplines that shape Information and Communication Technology. ICT is more than communication. In almost every product we use mathematics, electronics and computer technology and ICT now contributes to all of societies' activities. The faculty works together intensively with industrial partners and researchers in the Netherlands and abroad and conducts extensive research for external commissioning parties and funders. The research which enjoys a high profile both at home and internationally, has been accommodated in the multidisciplinary research institutes: Mesa+ Institute, TechMed Centra and Digital Society Institute.

The Human Media Interaction (HMI) lab does research into multimodal interaction: from brain computer interfaces to social robots. It is a multidisciplinary group in which computer science meets social science to investigate and design and evaluate novel forms of human-computer interaction.

Functie omschrijving

Why build AI systems that replace people if we can build AI systems that collaborate with people? Hybrid Intelligence is the combination of human and machine intelligence, expanding human intellect instead of replacing it. Our goal is to design Hybrid Intelligent systems, an approach to Artificial Intelligence that puts humans at the centre, changing the course of the ongoing AI revolution. The project will be recruiting 15 PhD or postdoc positions in total. For more information on the project see www.hybrid-intelligence-centre.nl.

At TU Delft in collaboration with University of Twente we are looking for a PhD student on Interactive Machine Reasoning for Responsible Hybrid Intelligence. The project centers around the concept of an Electronic Partner (e-partner), an intelligent agent that can support its user in a variety of daily activities, for example changing habits. In previous research (http://ii.tudelft.nl/coresaep/) we have developed knowledge structures for representing desired habits and underlying personal values, and a conversational agent that elicits this information from the user. The goal of the current project is to develop machine reasoning techniques and conversational strategies that allow the e-partner to interpret and adapt this information at run-time in interaction with the user based on the context. In other words, the e-partner should be able to tune in to the needs of the user as it provides support, and assess whether its support (still) aligns with user needs. With this project we lay the foundations for the novel area of Interactive Machine Reasoning in which meaning-making happens in coaction between human and technology, allowing people to maintain their personal space and agency. With this we go beyond a view of AI that centers autonomous decision making, towards Hybrid Intelligence.

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Do you have a Master's degree (or equivalent) in computer science, artificial intelligence or a related field and a good command of the English language? Are you inspired by shaping the digital society of the future with people at the center? Are you motivated by the prospect of creating the next generation of AI technologies that align with people’s norms and values and adapt to how people want to live their lives? Then send us your application! Expertise in one or more of the following areas is useful, but anyone with a CS, AI or related background that can contribute to addressing the goals of the project is welcome to apply: e.g., multiagent systems, knowledge representation and reasoning, formal methods, conversational agents, user modelling, human-computer interaction, or context-aware systems.


TU Delft offers PhD-candidates a 4-year contract, with an official go/no go progress assessment after one year. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, increasing from € 2395 per month in the first year to € 3061 in the fourth year. As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment with an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor. The Doctoral Education Programme is aimed at developing your transferable, discipline related and research skills. The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, discounts on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. For international applicants we offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist you with your relocation.

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For more information about this position, please contact Dr. Myrthe Tielman and Dr. Birna van Riemsdijk, email: m.l.tielman@tudelft.nl and m.b.vanriemsdijk@utwente.nl.

To apply, please submit the following materials:

  1. Curriculum Vitae (with a list of publications if you have any).

  2. Course lists with grades and degree certificates

  3. A letter of application in which you explain both your motivation and the relevance of your skills and experience for this research project. The motivational letter should be on-topic; generic letters will cause your application to be rejected immediately.

  4. A list of 3 (academic) references that we can contact

  5. Your MSc thesis in English (or alternatively if your MSc thesis is not in English, a 5-page summary of your MSc thesis in English).

Please e-mail your materials by September 1st to Vacancies-EEMCS@tudelft.nl, referring to vacancy number TUD00314. Please note that depending on the number and quality of applications, a first round of interviews may be conducted based on applications received before August 1st. If a suitable candidate is found in this round, the position might be closed before September 1st.

If you want to be also considered for one of our other PhD positions, then also upload your documents to our Hybrid Intelligence talent pool at https://bit.ly/HIC-Talentpool.
Your information will then be shared among the researchers in the consortium, and you may be approached for one of the other positions listed on www.hybrid-intelligence-centre.nl/jobs.

A pre-employment screening can be part of the application procedure.

Acquisitie naar aanleiding van deze vacature wordt niet op prijs gesteld.

Uren per week: 32-38 uur per week

Salaris: € 2.395,- tot € 3.061,- per maand


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