[robotics-worldwide] [jobs] Funded PhD in action modelling with episodic memory at CITEC - Bielefeld University

Robert Haschke rhaschke at techfak.uni-bielefeld.de
Wed Aug 23 00:18:22 PDT 2017

The NeuroInformatics Group (Prof. Ritter) at the Faculty of Technology, 
Bielefeld University, is looking for a PhD candidate in the area of 
computational modelling of actions and episodic memory. The project is 
part of the Collaborative Research Center (CRC) „Everyday Activity 
Science and Engineering (EASE)“ 
<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__ease.informatik.uni-2Dbremen.de_&d=DwIDaQ&c=clK7kQUTWtAVEOVIgvi0NU5BOUHhpN0H8p7CSfnc_gI&r=0w3solp5fswiyWF2RL6rSs8MCeFamFEPafDTOhgTfYI&m=WeerZPAaWsop0GJR24MJ6cP3YR00GrZck9G4HcNIGaA&s=Iu-1tLVts_QR1RePsxoWDIqqIeMUoSyH9ayCG37DDOs&e=>in cooperation with Bremen 

The ideal candidate should hold a MS degree in Computer Science or 
Engineering, with a particular focus on machine learning (particularly 
deep learning), robotics, action modelling, and cognitive architectures. 
Strong programming skills in C++ and/or python as well as experience 
with ROS are essential and candidates should be strongly motivated to 
quickly get acquainted with large existing code bases. A history of 
open-source contributions is desired (if you have one, please mention 
e.g. your github account). Proficiency in written and spoken English is 
required. Knowledge of German is useful but not required.

Successful candidates will be employed as research assistants with an 
annual gross salary of ca. 50.000 EUR according to the TVL-E13 pay scale 
and are limited to 4 years. Reduced working hours are possible. The 
position is meant for scientific qualification. According to the legal 
requirements of the WissZeitVG and the contract on good employment 
practice, individual contract terms can arise.

Interested candidates should submit a cover letter, a detailed CV, and 
the names of two references (or recommendation letters) via email to 
rhaschke at techfak.uni-bielefeld.de.

Interviews will start on September 18th, 2017. Late applications will be 
treated depending on availability of the position.


*About the project “Episodic memory for everyday manual activities” 
within EASE*

The project is part of the CRC EASE at University of Bremen. Together 
with a colleague from the Institute for Artificial Intelligence (IAI), 
lead by Prof. Beetz, you will investigate cognitive architectures to 
leverage episodic memory of robotic agents to learn sophisticated object 
manipulation skills and to reason about them. The core idea is to 
combine symbolic and subsymbolic activity descriptions in a hybrid 
episodic memory architecture to steer the robot action along manifolds 
that enable robust and safe goal achievement.


*About Neuroinformatics Group / CITEC*

Applicants will work in the context of the Neuroinformatics Group at 
CITEC, headed by Prof. Ritter and cooperating with the Institute for 
Artificial Intelligence (IAI), headed by Prof. Beetz. We provide an 
excellent and stimulating research environment. Our modern robotics lab 
hosts two bimanual robot setups equipped with anthropomorphic, 
tactile-sensorized Shadow Robot Hands. The project will benefit from its 
embedding in the research environment of the Cluster of Excellence 
“Cognitive Interaction Technology” (CITEC).

Creating the scientific and technology foundations for systems that 
interact with human users seamlessly and at a semantic level is the 
focus of the Cluster of Excellence in Cognitive Interaction Technology 
(CITEC) at Bielefeld University. CITEC's research topics range from 
smart devices, over virtual or augmented reality to sophisticated robots 
with cognitive or even social capabilities.

CITEC was established as part of the German Excellence Initiative in 
2007 and brings together over30 research groups in computer science, 
robotics, biology, linguistics, psychology, and sports science, 
co-located in a dedicated buildingthat offers cutting-edge lab facilities.

The Neuroinformatics Group, headed by Prof. Ritter, is particularly 
focusing on tactile- and vision-based grasping and manipulation in 
unknown environments employing anthropomorphic Shadow Robot Hands. 
Methods include machine learning, particularly deep neural networks, but 
also classical engineering approaches.

*What CITEC Offers You*

We offer a strongly interdisciplinary and stimulating research 
environment with excellent laboratory infrastructure as well as a wide 
network of national and international research partners. The positions 
are remunerated at the salary level TV-L 13 and are provided with a 
dedicated budget for research costs. We are strongly committed to 
support the career development of our members and can offer facilities 
to reconcile professional demands and family life.

*Application Process*

Applications are to be submitted in English and must include the 
following (no more than two pages for each item 1. - 4.):


    A statement describing the applicant’s area(s) of research (topics
    and methods)


    A motivation letter,


    A curriculum vitae


    Record of publications, with copies of 3 representative papers


    References to software projects the candidate developed / contributed to


    Up to two letters of recommendation

Applications should be sent by email (rhaschke at techfak.uni-bielefeld.de) 
<mailto:helge at cit-ec.uni-bielefeld.de%29>to Dr. Robert Haschke, in one 
PDF document. Should you have any questions, please also contact us at 
this email address.

Applications from qualified severely handicapped persons and persons who 
are on a par with severely handicapped persons are explicitly welcome.

Bielefeld University is recognized as a family-friendly university. We 
encourage women to apply for jobs; this is particularly true with regard 
to both academic and technical posts as well as positions in information 
technology, trades and crafts. Applications are handled according to the 
provisions of the state equal opportunity statutes.

*About Bielefeld *

Bielefeld is one of the 20 largest cities in Germany (with close to 
330.000 inhabitants). Founded in 1214 CE as merchant city, Bielefeld is 
today a dynamic university city with a total of seven universities and 
nearly 35.000 students. It is a lively city with favourable living costs 
with a lot of cultural and entertainment opportunities. Bielefeld is at 
the heart of the East Westphalia-Lippe region, which is home to a number 
of worldwide acting companies, including Miele, Bertelsmann, Dr. Oetker 
and Schüco. Fast ICE trains make Berlin, Hamburg and Cologne reachable 
within two and a half hours. Located in the heart of the Teutoburg 
Forest, the place is one of Germanies greenest cities, offering many 
opportunities for outdoors and leisure activities.

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