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Research Fellow (AutoTrust)

Agents, Interactions & Complexity

Location:  Highfield Campus
Salary:   £30,942 to £38,017
Full Time Fixed Term (12 months)
Closing Date:  Thursday 27 February 2020
Reference:  1234620FP

Research Fellow - AutoTrust: Human-Centred Internet of Vehicles 

Keywords: Internet of Vehicles, Autonomous Vehicles, Connected Vehicles, Human-Computer Interaction, Artificial Intelligence

We are looking for two high quality researchers to explore the design of human-centered, connected vehicle systems which are technically resilient, and which fundamentally support human-centered, socially aligned values. There are two types of positions. The first has a more defined focus, whereas the latter requires the applicant to submit a research proposal related to the project goals. The two available positions could be of the same type, or of different types, depending on the interests of the candidates.

Position Type 1: A Multi-Modal Transportation System

With assumptions being made from government to industry about the shape of autonomous, multi vehicle interactions, usually without citizens being in the design loop, we need to explore  models for novel personalised multi-modal transportation systems from how they will use data from individual occupants to how they will use data across infrastructure [something like that].

Open questions include: learning and eliciting individual preferences for different modes of transport including walking; multi-modal matching between transportation providers and consumers where a match will consist of a combination of services (eg cycling, taxi, public transport, self driving car); negotiation between providers and consumer; providing incentives through e.g. the use of mechanism design; interaction between users and the system; use of machine learning to predict and demand and supply; trust and privacy issues in such systems. 

You have the opportunity in this project to develop a functional demonstrator that considers - and prototypes - the simple question of: how does someone get to campus from a variety of currently challenging locations - if not using a personal vehicle. You will explore models that mix types of transportation from trains, to walking to ride sharing that can help explore the limits and affordances of an effective, trustworthy individual to infrastructure experience.

Research Fellows will propose research questions they can explore by contributing to this demonstrator development; they will create a research output plan as well, targeting top quality conferences and journals. And they will identify key partners to help act as industry and policy making reality checks in translating outcomes for impact.  

Position Type 2: Open Call

We are also seeking project proposals through our open call. For this position we require applicants to submit a research proposal. The research proposal should be related to one or more themes from the AutoTrust project: interaction; automation; services; or security. More information about these themes are available here:

Please also see the project call which details the expected headings in the research proposal:

A research proposal should address specific research questions. Examples of research questions include:

  • How do we design IoV systems to be both technically resilient and useful, and that fundamentally support human-centered, socially aligned values?

  • Can sharing data in IoV scenarios support new and valuable services, especially for those currently disenfranchised from easy transportation?

  • What technical solutions can be developed to protect the privacy of road users?

  • How can we ensure secure communications? What role can intelligence at the edge play in securing infrastructure?

  • How can we support a user with making decisions, or even automate these decisions entirely in time critical environments and settings with uncertainty?

  • How can we incentivise IoV users to change their travel behaviours when this leads to better (e.g., greener or more efficient) system-wide behaviour?

To be successful you will have a PhD* or equivalent professional qualifications and experience in a relevant field within Computer Science or Engineering  ideally specialised in multi-agent systems and/or human-computer interaction; engineering ideally specialised in human factors and/or transportation. It is essential you have published papers in top quality journals and conferences. Knowledge in the area of connected and/or autonomous vehicles is a plus. As you will be working with a variety of teams and stakeholders it is essential you are able to work well in teams, and have good organisational skills as you will organise workshops and meetings.  Ideally you will have experience interacting with industry and/or policy holders. In addition to the research, the position will involve organising workshops and meetings with project stakeholders. 

Benefits for AutoTrust Researchers

A key focus of the Autotrust Platform is to help build “super researchers”. Through intense, focussed  projects, we will help researchers on the project connect with key industry and policy stakeholders. Research Fellows will also have the opportunity to develop and lead stakeholder meetings on research directions, such that at project end, they will not only have research outcomes for their CV, but a reputation as a Trusted Research Expert in this growing area of international importance.


To support the best, most creative research possible, we are keen to work with applicants from a diversity of backgrounds and experiences. The interdisciplinary factors affecting technology design in this growing area have far reaching implications. You have the opportunity to help inform those directions. 

Equality, diversity and Inclusion is central to the ethos in the School of Electronics and Computer Science. We are commited to improving equality for women in science and are submitting an application for Athena SWAN in November 2019.   We give full consideration to applicants that wish to work flexibly including part-time and due consideration will be given to applicants who have taken a career break. The University has a generous maternity policy**, onsite childcare facilities

The University of Southampton is in the top 1% of world universities and in the top 10 of the UK’s research-intensive universities. The University of Southampton is committed to sustainability and being a globally responsible university and has recently been awarded the Platinum EcoAward.  Our vision is to embed the principles of sustainability into all aspects of our individual and collective work, integrating sustainable development into our business planning, policy-making, and professional activities.  This commits all of our staff and students to take responsibility for managing their activities to minimise harm to the environment, whether this through switching off non-essential electrical equipment or using the recycling facilities.

*Applications will be considered from candidates who are working towards or nearing completion of a relevant PhD qualification. The title of Research Fellow will be applied upon completion of PhD. Prior to the qualification being awarded the title of Senior Research Assistant will be given.

**subject to qualifying criteria

Application Procedure:

You should submit your completed online application form at The application deadline will be midnight on the closing date stated above. If you need any assistance, please call Sam Stubbs (Recruitment Team) on +44 (0)23 8059 4046. Please quote reference 1234620FP on all correspondence.

You should make clear in your application cover letter which position (1 or 2) you are applying for. If you are applying for position type 1, you are encouraged to include a proposal for building a demonstrator and what research questions you will address through this demonstrator. If you are applying for position type 2, you are required to include a project proposal. For this position it is highly recommended that you contact the project team before you submit your application to receive feedback on the fit to the project. For questions please contact Dr Enrico Gerding by emailing

The closing date for this job opportunity has now passed, and applications are no longer being accepted for this position

Further details:

We aim to be an equal opportunities employer and welcome applications from all sections of the community. Please note that applications from agencies will not be accepted unless indicated in the job advert.

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