Research Fellows will conduct research into open and important questions that bear on AI governance. We are interested in candidates from a range of disciplines, who have a demonstrated ability to produce excellent research and care deeply about the long-run impacts of AI. The role would offer significant research freedom, access to a broad network of experts, and opportunities for collaboration.
Research Fellows are expected to set their own research agendas, with guidance from other members of the team. We are open to hiring candidates with a wide range of research interests, so long as these interests are in keeping with our mission. Although political scientists are most strongly represented within GovAI, we have also hired or hosted researchers with backgrounds in computer science, economics, history, philosophy, and law. The GovAI team and community are highly multidisciplinary.
Research Fellows are expected to offer supervision and mentorship to junior researchers, such as our Summer and Winter Fellows, and participate in seminars. However, Research Fellows will dedicate the substantial majority of their time to research projects of their own choosing. They will be encouraged to collaborate and co-author with other members of our community, but may also focus on solo projects if they choose.
We are committed to supporting the work of Research Fellows by offering research freedom, expert guidance, funding for projects, productivity tools, limited obligations on one’s time, access to a broad network of experts and potential collaborators, and opportunities to communicate one’s research to policymakers and other audiences.
For promising researchers who lack sufficient experience, we may consider hiring individuals in one-year “Research Scholar” positions.
Qualifications and Selection Criteria
The ideal candidate will have the following attributes:
- Demonstrated ability to produce excellent research
- Deep interest in the long-term implications of artificial intelligence, in line with our organization’s mission
- Established expertise in a domain with significant AI governance relevance
- Self-directedness and desire for impact
- Commitment to intellectual honesty and rigour
- Good judgment regarding the promisingness and importance of different research directions
- Excellent communication and collaboration skills
- Broad familiarity with the field of AI governance
There are no specific educational requirements for the role, although we expect that the most promising candidates will typically possess PhDs or equivalent research experience.
Salary, duration, and location
Contracts will be 2 years fixed-term, with possibility of renewal.
Research Fellows will be compensated in line with our salary principles. Depending on their experience, we expect that successful candidates’ annual compensation will typically fall between £45,000 and £60,000 if based in Oxford, UK. In cases where a Research Fellow resides partly or entirely in a city with a higher cost of living, this salary will be adjusted to account for the difference. In exceptional cases, there may be some flexibility in compensation. Benefits will include health, dental, and vision insurance, flexible work hours, a £1,000 annual training budget, extended parental leave, ergonomic equipment, 3% pension contribution, and 25 days of paid vacation.
This is intended to be a full-time and in-person role, based in Oxford, UK. However, we may also consider exceptional candidates who are only able to engage in part-time or remote work.
GovAI is a research and community-building organisation that aims to help clarify and mitigate risks from advanced artificial intelligence.
Our research agenda, published in 2018, helped define and shape the nascent field of AI governance. GovAI researchers have published in top peer-reviewed journals and conferences including Nature, Nature Machine Intelligence, International Organization, Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research, Journal of Strategic Studies, AAAI AIES, and NeurIPS. We have published op-eds in The Washington Post, War on the Rocks, Nature Commentary, and Lawfare. Our research has also been covered by Bloomberg, Vox, Axios, MIT Technology Review, New York Times, the BBC, Reuters, and The Verge. You can find all our research outputs here.
Learn more about our mission, history, and projects here.
How to apply
The application round for 2021 intake of Research Fellows has concluded. Application rounds for Research Fellows will recur on an approximately annual basis. However, we are still able to accept expressions of interest from exceptional candidates outside of our formal application periods. If you would like to express your interest, please contact us with further information.
We are committed to fostering a culture of inclusion, and we encourage individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences to apply. We especially encourage applications from women, gender minorities, and people of colour who are excited about contributing to our mission. We are an equal opportunity employer.