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A Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) funded project "Big Mechanism" at the University of Chicago, invites applications for a Postdoctoral Scholar position. The Postdoc will work with James Evans and Andrey Rzhetsky and will be associated with Knowledge Lab (www.knowledgelab.org) at the University of Chicago, one of the world’s leading research universities. The position will be for 3 years, contingent on annual reappointment.

The overall project develops technologies that allow for the automated integration of new research findings into explanatory (network) models of large, highly complex systems piloted on cancer biology, as well as automated hypothesis generation, experimentation by robot scientists, and knowledge validation and extension over these systems (e.g., cancer biology). The specific focus of this position will involve some combination of the following three tasks: (1) development of novel metrics that capture confidence in and credibility of new findings (automatically extracted from publications, grants, and patents by other researchers involved in the broader project), (2) integration of these weighted findings into a probabilistic knowledge graph of cancer mechanisms and pathways, and (3) development of algorithms that efficiently search through the space of possible experiments to propose new ones that optimize scientific and medical advance. These proposed hypotheses will be subsequently tested by experimental robots and expert researchers.

See Metaknowledge and Machine Science.

We particularly value specific skills in networks, complex systems, machine learning, text-mining, and graphical models. Please note that applicants need not have all of these skills to apply, though some combination and familiarity is preferred.

Minimum qualifications for this position are a PhD or expected PhD in computer science, informatics, applied mathematics, or demonstrably related disciplines (e.g., physics, computational biology, computational social science, etc.) Strong preference will be given to candidates with experience with some combination of networks, complex systems, and machine learning. Strong computational skills; and a record of successful teamwork and collaboration are required. In addition, an open mind and a record of successful teamwork and the ability to communicate and collaborate across disciplinary lines are preferred. Women and members of underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

Interested candidates must submit to [log in to unmask]: 1) cover letter, describing your interest in and qualifications for pursuing interdisciplinary research in general and metaknowledge research in particular; 2) curriculum vitae (including publications list); 3) description of your computational skill and experience and a broad career trajectory (max. 2 pages), discussing how those skills will support work on this project; 4) contact information for three or more scholars who know your work and are willing to write letters of reference; 5) one or more examples of working software you have written (e.g., GitHub).

Compensation includes a competitive salary and benefits plan.

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