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Research Assistant/Associate in Machine Learning (AI Alignment) (Fixed Term)


We are seeking a post-doctoral Research Associate ("post-doc") to join the Machine Learning Group (MLG) (http://mlg.eng.cam.ac.uk) in the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, UK. This position will contribute to the research programme "Deep Learning and AI Alignment".

The programme's goal is to increase our understanding of how to align AI systems -- especially those based on Deep Learning - with human preferences/values/intentions.

The post-doc will work with Assistant Professor David Krueger on topics in AI Alignment, Deep Learning and/or Reinforcement Learning. They will have the opportunity to work with members of the MLG including Professor Richard Turner and Dr. Adrian Weller, and other professors at Cambridge, such as Assistant Professor Samuel Albanie, and Associate Professor Ferenc Huszar. They will also have the opportunity to assist in supervising PhD students, Master's students, and research assistants.

Key responsibilities include working on AI alignment. Current topics of particular interest are: reward hacking, specification techniques such as reward modelling, aligning or fine-tuning foundation models, approaches to capability control (such as Causal Incentive Diagrams), and underexplored failure modes (e.g. mesa-optimization, emergent failures in multi-agent systems).

Additional responsibilities include developing research objectives and proposals; presentations and publications; assisting with teaching; liaising and networking with colleagues and students; planning and organising research resources and workshops.

Successful applicants will have or be near to completing a PhD in computer science, information engineering, statistics, or another relevant area, with extensive research experience and a strong publication record. Excellent mathematical and programming skills are essential.

Interviews are expected to happen in August 2022 at the Department of Engineering of Cambridge University. Applicants are encouraged to guarantee that referees can submit their letters before such date. The interviews will be done via online video conference.

Appointment at Research Associate level is dependent on having a PhD. Those who have submitted but not yet received their PhD will be appointed at Research Assistant level, which will be amended to Research Associate once the PhD has been awarded. Salary Ranges: Research Assistant: £27,116 - £31,406 Research Associate: £33,309 - £40,927

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 24 months in the first instance.

Click the 'Apply' button below to register an account with our recruitment system (if you have not already) and apply online.

Please ensure that you upload your Curriculum Vitae (CV), including a list of your publications, in the Upload section of the online application. If you upload any additional documents which have not been requested, we will not be able to consider these as part of your application. Please submit your application by midnight on the closing date.

If you have any questions of a technical nature about this vacancy you may contact David Krueger, dsk30@cam.ac.uk; for all other queries regarding the application process, please contact: CBL administrator, email: cbl-enquiries@eng.cam.ac.uk.

Please quote reference NM31654 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

Further information

Apply online