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Research Associate - Governance and Regulation

Computer Science
Based at
University of York - Heslington Campus
Hours of work
Contract status
Fixed term
32,817 - 40,322 a year
Posted Date
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Job Reference

Role Description

We are seeking a highly-motivated researcher to work with Professor John McDermid as part of the 'Assuring Autonomy International Programme’ (AAIP, a £12 million initiative funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation and the University of York to spearhead research, training and standards in the safety of robotics and autonomous systems (RAS).

The primary purpose of the role is to develop, articulate and validate an ethically-informed approach to the regulation and governance of autonomous systems which links to the technical frameworks being developed by the AAIP. This will include consideration of the imposition and distribution of risks vs benefits and the role of regulators where individuals may not be able to exercise choice over the risks to which they are exposed. The approach to Governance and regulation will be validated via interaction with domain-specific research projects in RAS including the demonstrator projects supported by the AAIP.  You will play a pivotal role in achieving impact from the Programme by enabling the AAIP to interact effectively with real-world demonstrator projects, regulators and policy makers, and thus to make better-informed decisions about development, assurance and regulation of RAS.  You will also have a role in disseminating the work of the Programme and support communications about the research, e.g. writing blog posts, presenting webinars, or producing short films.

You will have a first degree and a PhD (or equivalent experience), in a social sciences or philosophy with an understanding of practical ethics. You will have an interest in RAS or AI sufficient to engage in research on the ethical use of such technology. You will have, or be able to develop, a good understanding of system safety, enabling you to undertake research on such issues as assurance of systems that learn, data safety, etc. You will be expected to maintain currency in your initial academic discipline, linking the AAIP to advances in that subject.

Essential personal attributes include attention to detail and commitment to high quality, collaborative ethos, interest in and enthusiasm for the subject matter of the Programme, positive attitude to colleagues and students, and ability to plan and prioritise your own work in order to meet deadlines. Ideally, you will have experience of both research and public engagement, and an ability to work as part of a team, as well as working independently using your own initiative.

The University is committed to promoting a diverse and inclusive community  – a place where we can all be ourselves and succeed on merit. We offer a range of family friendly, inclusive employment policies, flexible working arrangements, staff engagement forums, campus facilities and services to support staff from different backgrounds.

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