The Centre for Governance of AI, part of the Future of Humanity Institute, is seeking exceptional researchers to carry out collaborative research with our interdisciplinary team. Researchers in the team will have the opportunity to conduct cutting-edge research in a fast-growing field. FHI offers talented researchers freedom to think about the most important issues of our era in an environment with other brilliant minds who are willing to constructively engage with a broad range of ideas. 

We are looking to hire across grades and experience levels: Researchers, Research Fellows, and Senior Research Fellows. Applications close 19th October 2020, noon BST.

Given the multidisciplinarity of our work, we are interested in candidates from a broad set of disciplines including International Relations, Public Policy, Political Science, History, Economics, Sociology, Law, Philosophy, Mathematics, and Computer Science. Technical expertise in or familiarity with machine learning is useful but not required. We are also interested in candidates with policy-making experience.

Our work focuses on identifying and steering the high-stakes decisions regarding artificial intelligence. To do so, we conduct research into:

  • The technical landscape – What will AI systems be capable of, and when?
  • The strategic landscape – What are the most important geopolitical effects and dynamics, and how can they be steered for the common good? 
  • Ideal governance – What norms and institutions we would ideally create to govern the transition to advanced artificial intelligence?
  • AI policy – What policies governments, researchers, and firms can pursue today to improve AI’s impact on society?

Our work is structured around our research agenda. Building on this, we have published work on policy considerations for transformative AI, surveys of machine learning experts and the public on AI governance issues, The Windfall Clause, China’s AI strategy, malicious use of AI, strategic considerations of openness in AI, the offense-defense balance, and industry standards on AI

The research has been featured in The Economist, Foreign Affairs, The Financial Times, The MIT Technology Review, Wired, and Lawfare; our researchers are frequently invited to present their work to important audiences (e.g. the EU Parliament and the US Congress). 

To find out more about our work, visit our publication page, read this post, watch this video, or listen to this podcast.

If you are interested in learning more about our work on AI governance, please contact markus.anderljung@philosophy.ox.ac.uk.

Positions

We are hiring researchers across our levels of seniority: 

Researchers: You will hold a first degree, with evidence of research potential in a relevant field. You would be expected to pursue independent research projects, with little guidance from more experienced team members. For the Researcher positions apply here

Research Fellows: You will have a Bachelors and/or Masters degree with at least two years of research experience and evidence of research potential in a relevant field for your specialism. Typically, Research Fellows have a PhD or an equivalent amount of research experience. You would possess sufficient specialist knowledge in the discipline to pursue independent tracks, with an ability to manage your own research and related activities with little guidance. For the Research Fellow positions apply here

Senior Research Fellows: You would hold a relevant Ph.D. with either post-qualification research experience or equivalent experience in a non-academic setting. Typically, Senior Research Fellows have 5+ years of post-PhD research experience. You would have a strong publication record or equivalent experience in a non-academic setting. Excellent candidates can set up their research teams, under the guidance of the Director. For the Senior Research Fellow positions apply here

If you aren’t sure which two grades applies to you, then please apply to both of them, and we will consider you for the right one. 

Application process

Stage 1:

Candidates apply, submitting

  • A CV, including a link to your professional website or Google Scholar page where possible
  • A cover letter. Your cover letter should be no more than 400 words and should:
    • Explain how you meet the selection criteria for the role, and
    • Outline one research idea, of something you would like to, or would like the FHI to pursue, and why
  • Details of two academic referees and permission to contact them. If you are shortlisted we will take up references. Candidates are advised to let their referees know to expect they may be contacted. 

Stage 2: 

  • Shortlisted candidates submit a 1000 word research proposal, focused on one question, outlining why it is important, and how they would answer it
  • Shortlisted candidates complete trial tasks and are interviewed by the selection committee
  • References are collected
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