Two-year Post-Doctoral Position


Joint Action for Human-Robot Interaction, Institut Jean Nicod, Paris and LAAS, Toulouse


Applications are invited for a two-year post-doctoral position to work with Elisabeth Pacherie at Institut Jean Nicod and Rachid Alami and Aurélie Clodic at LAAS as part of Collaborative ANR Research Project “Joint Action for Human-Robot interaction". The aim of this research is to develop a comprehensive theoretical framework for human-robot collaborative interactions by identifying and characterizing the elements (and their interactions) that allow the establishment and maintenance of mutual understanding between a human and a robot in a collaborative task, modeling the notion of commitment that structures the relationship between two interacting agents, and elaborating and testing robotics architecture design for collaboration with humans.

The post-doctoral researcher will (i) investigate the role of commitments in human cooperative interactions and (ii) assess the extent to which commitments could or should play the same or similar roles in contexts of human/robot interactions, given both the possible differences in human expectations vis-à-vis a robot partner and the specificities of robotic cognitive architecture compared to human cognitive architectures. The post-doctoral researcher will be based at Institut Jean Nicod during his or her first year and will work, in collaboration with Elisabeth Pacherie, on objective (i). This work will involve bringing together the complementary perspectives of philosophical analyses of the role of commitments in joint action, work in cognitive and developmental psychology on the emergence of the notion of commitment in ontogeny, as well as psycholinguistic work on commitments in conversational interactions to develop a typology of the nature and functions of commitments in human collaborative interactions. During his or her second year, the post-doctoral researcher will be based at LAAS in Toulouse and work in collaboration with Rachid Alami and Aurélie Clodic. There he or she will work on objective (ii), tie in the work realized during the first year of the post-doctorate to recent work in robotics on the concepts of shared goals, plans and intentions, and contribute to the conception and implementation of user studies with a robot

Applicants should have a strong background in philosophy of mind and action and in cognitive science and be highly motivated to engage in interdisciplinary research. Fluent English is required.

Institut Jean Nicod is a world-renowned multidisciplinary research center in philosophy, cognitive sciences and social sciences. It is part of the Department of Cognitive Studies at Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris and provides an amazing environment for interdisciplinary research. More information about the research at Institut Jean Nicod can be found here.

Laboratoire d'Analyse et d'Architecture des Systèmes (LAAS) is a laboratory of CNRS, the French National Organisation for Scientific Research. Research at LAAS covers Automatic Control, Computer Science and Engineering, and Microelectronics. The Robotics Department, one of the largest in France (26 staff, more than 50 PhD students, 7 post-docs, 7 engineers), is active in research on intelligent and autonomous robotic systems. The team involved is the Robotics and InteractionS (RIS) group. The preferred start date is March 2018 or as soon as can be arranged after that date. Informal enquiries may be made to Elisabeth Pacherie at elisabeth.pacherie@ens.fr or to Aurélie Clodic at aurelie.clodic@laas.fr. The salary will be adjusted to the candidate's experience (start salary for a first-year post-doctoral researcher: 26,000€, including health insurance and social benefits)

Interested applicants should submit: (i) a full curriculum vitae with a list of publications and contact details of two academic referees and (ii) a 1-page statement of past and current research activities and areas of interest. Please submit all requested information in one file as surname.pdf by email at elisabeth.pacherie@ens.fr and aurelie.clodic@laas.fr