The Cognitive Robotic Systems at AASS
The following positions are currently available at the AASS Cognitive Robotic Systems Lab.
PhD student position on Planning Human-Aware Robot Behavior
A three-year PhD student position in Computer Science is available at
the Center for Applied Autonomous Sensor Systems (AASS) of Örebro
University, Sweden. The research area is artificial intelligence and
robotics, with special emphasis on planning human-aware robot behavior.
The position is available with start on February 1st, 2013.
The main task of the student will be to perform world-class research
at the intersection of artificial intelligence and robotics,
specifically on the topic of planning human-aware robot behavior. The
student will create, implement and test new techniques to allow a
robot, or team of robots, to generate plans to perform given tasks
that involve the interaction with humans. What is new compared to
traditional planning is that these plans must ensure that the robot's
behavior complies with a set of social norms and social roles, which
may depend on the interaction context.
The research will be motivated by, guided by, and validated in a
specific application scenario: robots that interact with children in a
hospital, in order to entertain them or to participate in educational
activities. Depending on the context, robots may play different roles
and they may engage in different social relations with the children,
following different social norms. For instance, robots may be
watchful guardians in some situations, or companion players in others.
The human-aware planning techniques developed in this research project
will take the social context, norms and roles into account, and
regulate the robots' behavior accordingly.
This research work will be carried on in the framework of the European
Union FP7 project MOnarCH (Multi-Robot Cognitive Systems Operating in
Hospitals). The overall aims of MOnarCH are (i) the development of a
novel framework to model mixed human-robot societies, and (ii) its
demonstration using a network of heterogeneous robots and sensors, in
the pediatric area of an oncological hospital. It will handle
uncertainties introduced by people and robots, generate natural
interactions, and engage in edutainment activities. The framework
developed in MOnarCH will map concepts in social sciences into social
skills, group behaviors, and human-robot interaction, using learning
methodologies and decision-theoretic principles.
About the working place.
Örebro University (www.oru.se) is a
modern university currently enrolling more than 18,000 students. It is
located in Örebro, a city of 130,000 inhabitants situated in
central Sweden. More information about Örebro can be found, for
example, at www.orebro.se.
The AASS Cognitive Robotic Systems Lab is one of the two research groups
within the Center for Applied Autonomous Sensor Systems (AASS) at Örebro University. AASS
carries out multi-disciplinary research at the intersection of robotics,
machine learning, artificial intelligence, computer vision, computer
science, and measurement technology. The research and human environment
at AASS is young and enthusiastic. The 45+ researchers at AASS come from a dozen
different countries, in Europe and worldwide, and have different
scientific and cultural backgrounds. AASS also frequently hosts
international researchers and is involved in several international
projects. This means that the enrolled PhD students will have the
opportunity to travel and to cooperate with people in other countries.
AASS is internationally renowned for its research in cognitive robotics,
therefore the selected student will be at the forefront of world
research in this area.
Tasks of the Student.
The successful candidate will be employed as PhD student with Írebro
University for an expected duration of three years. The student's main
task will be to perform research aimed at the completion of a PhD thesis
in the above topic. He or she will work within the local MOnarCH team
at Írebro University, but will also collaborate with the other European
partners in the MOnarCH project, both remotely and through physical
meetings and research visits. A small percentage of time may also be
devoted to taking courses or to teaching activities.
The student is expected to take active part in the
life of the AASS Cognitive Robotic Systems
Lab. The student will receive a monthly salary adequate to the cost
of living in Sweden (equivalent to about 2400 euro before taxes) and
will be included in the Swedish social security system.
In addition to a clear interest in the above research topic, the
successful applicant must have a strong theoretical background in
computer science, and solid programming skills. A Master's in
computer science or computer engineering is required. We particularly
seek candidates with experience in artificial intelligence, planning
and constraint reasoning, and with an inclination towards
cross-disciplinary research. Previous experience with robotic systems
is a plus. Knowledge of the Swedish language is not required, but
proficiency in written and spoken English is mandatory.
To apply for this position, please send the following material by e-mail to
Prof. Alessandro Saffiotti (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Applications can be sent immediately and until January 15, 2013.
Late application cannot be considered. We look forward to receiving
- a motivation letter;
- an updated CV;
- at least two academic references;
- a transcipt of your BS and MSc courses (optional);
- an electronic copy of your MSc thesis (optional);
- an electronic copy of any publications you might have (optional).