Research Scientist / Ethics & Society

Our Mission
Our mission is to solve the most important and fundamental challenges in AI and Robotics to enable future generations of intelligent machines that will help us all live better lives.

The AI Institute ethics & society team does forward-thinking, cross-disciplinary research on the societal impact of robotics. Our research aims to ground societal conversations about robotics with evidence, providing the data needed for decision makers to make informed choices about the integration and regulation of robotic systems. 

Our approach is creative, rigorous, and highly collaborative. The research team brings together members from different disciplines, all of whom use scientifically grounded methodologies. The team chooses its own research topics and projects, working to identify and examine under-explored questions at the intersections of law & policy, ethics, market forces, and robotics. We are committed to high-quality work on a few projects at a time, publishing only peer-reviewed research.

Aside from doing independent research, the team is fully embedded at the institute. The team hosts institute-wide workshops and conversations, and engages with all of the research & development at the Institute.

Research Scientists will have a background in a core social science discipline, including (but not limited to) anthropology, sociology, political economics, philosophy, STS, history, or other related fields. We also welcome applicants with an engineering or computer science background who are well-versed in social science questions and methodologies. All researchers must have a proven track record of cross-disciplinary, collaborative research at the intersection of social and technical systems.

If you are passionate about investigating the societal implications of robots, and excited to be embedded in a cutting-edge robotics institute, this team will be a great fit for you!
  • Work with the team to identify areas of opportunity/interest and jointly plan out team research projects
  • Collaboratively design, execute, and support mixed-method research studies involving data collection and analysis
  • Co-manage team research projects
  • Prepare and co-author peer-reviewed publications
  • Engage with the robotics research & development teams at the Institute
  • Other responsibilities as needed
  • Requirements
  • MS or PhD in a relevant field
  • 5+ years of research experience
  • Track-record of collaborative, cross-disciplinary research
  • Familiarity with social science methodologies, with deep expertise in at least one methodological approach
  • Experience with designing and executing data-intensive research studies
  • Record of peer-reviewed publishing
  • Strong analytical and critical thinking abilities
  • Strong interpersonal, organizational, and communication skills, ability to work within a multidisciplinary environment
  • Bonus
  • Deep knowledge of statistics, data processing, or data science
  • Experience with robotic systems
  • Record of impactful peer-reviewed publications in top-tier conferences and journals
  • Experience working in both academic and industry research environments
  • These attributes are great to have but not required for our candidates. Candidates who lack these should not be discouraged from applying.
    We provide equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibit discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws.
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