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Research Associate

Management Science
Salary:   £28,331 to £32,817
Closing Date:   Thursday 20 August 2020
Interview Date:   To be confirmed
Reference:  A3049

BIAS is an interdisciplinary research project funded as part of the Canada-UK Artificial Intelligence Initiative (UKRI and multiple Canadian Funding Agencies) to improve scientific understanding of gender and ethnic biases in the increasingly digitalised and AI-driven labour market processes of job advertising, hiring and professional networking; and developing insights into how such biases and attendant inequalities may be mitigated. Through collaboration with academics from the disciplines of Organisational Management, Sociology, Computer Science and Data Science, and with industry partners in the area of AI protocol development, these insights will drive the development of a new Responsible AI Development Protocol. The post is advertised for 24 months. The academic partners in the project are Lancaster University (lead institution), Essex University (UK), and Alberta University (Canada).

We seek to recruit one qualified post-doctoral researcher (RA) with ambition, potential and determination. You should have a PhD in a topic related to information systems management, the development of socio-technical systems, labour relations, and/or human resources management. This is a great opportunity to build a leading interdisciplinary research profile and develop experience in a cutting-edge and highly topical area that is critical to both science and policy. The main activities will include:

1.Research: Conducting qualitative (interviews, focus groups, ethnography) research of organisational processes entailed in various human resources and workforce management solutions, with particular attention to the role of technology at key decision points and the potential for these technologies to introduce bias into the hiring pipeline.  Setting up and conducting interviews and focus groups with users to understand perceptions and experiences of bias within such systems. Analysing qualitative data to derive recommendations for responsible AI and evaluating and iterating these recommendations through further interviews with stakeholders. Identifying organizations and individuals for data collection activities.

2.Project participation and coordination: Participating in regular project meetings with the interdisciplinary project team in the UK (Lancaster and Essex), as well as liaising regularly with the partnering research team based in Canada to further understanding of existing operations and patterns of algorithmic decision making in the context of the labour market.

3.Academic dissemination: Synthesis of research findings, preparing conference presentations / papers, and presenting these outputs at national and international conferences, workshops and events. Writing up research reports and drafting peer reviewed academic journal publications.

4.Impact dissemination: Writing up policy / media briefs for a non-academic audience. Co-organising outreach and stakeholder engagement events and produce public-faced materials to disseminate research findings and maximise the project impact.

The position will be based in Lancaster University Management School (LUMS) - https://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lums/. LUMS is an international centre of excellence in management research. It was ranked 1st in the UK in terms of “research power” and “research environment” research by the UK government’s REF2014 evaluation. Its faculty are world leading highly research active. It offers a stimulating interdisciplinary research environment that includes enormous opportunities to engage with industry and policy via interdisciplinary research centres - https://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lums/research/areas-of-expertise/centre-for-technological-futures/. It offers an inclusive environment for career development. We are committed to family-friendly and flexible working policies on an individual basis, as well as the Athena SWAN Charter, which recognises and celebrates good employment practice undertaken to address gender equality in higher education and research

For informal enquires, please contact Professor Monideepa Tarafdar (m.tarafdar@lancaster.ac.uk), Dr. Yang Hu (yang.hu@lancaster.ac.uk)  or Dr. Bran Knowles (b.h.knowles1@lancaster.ac.uk).

We welcome applications from people in all diversity groups.

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