[Elsnet-list] PhD Position on multimodal communication including Touch

D.K.J.Heylen at utwente.nl D.K.J.Heylen at utwente.nl
Thu Jul 25 16:02:51 CEST 2013

The Human Media Interaction group at the University of Twente, The Netherlands has an opening for a PhD student on Mediated Social Touch

In human-computer interaction, the sense of touch is a modality that has become a commodity in the form of touch screens. However, this type of interaction does not do justice to the many possibilities offered by the tactile modality. Touching is an important modality in social interaction. Yet, there is little technology available that enables communication by touch between humans at a distance or between a human and a virtual agent. To improve social interaction between humans and humans and virtual agents, the candidate will develop knowledge and technology on how social touch is generated and perceived, and its effect on well-being and behaviour. This includes the transfer from direct social touch to mediated social touch and from human generated to machine generated human touch.

The project is a collaboration between the University of Twente (UT) and the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research TNO. The candidate will conduct the research partly at UT, Enschede and TNO, Soesterberg. The open position is within the HMI group, headed by prof. dr. Dirk Heylen which aims to investigate and develop Socially Intelligent Systems in collaboration with the TNO department Perceptual and Cognitive Systems which aims to develop User Interfaces that realize symbiosis between users and systems.

We are looking for highly motivated, talented and enthusiastic candidates with an active attitude and excellent communication and collaborative skills. The successful applicant has completed a doctoral degree in cognitive psychology, computer science or in a closely related discipline but always with a proven affinity for the interplay between beta and gamma sciences. Experience with conducting human subject experiments is desirable.

Candidates are invited to send their application, before August 15, 2013. Please include the following attachments in your application as a *single* PDF file:
•	CV (including a list of grades and at least two references)
•	A cover letter, emphasizing your specific interest, qualifications and motivation to apply for this position

Information and application
For more information please contact:
Prof. dr. Dirk Heylen d.k.j.heylen at utwente.nl

We offer
We offer a scientific education on a multidisciplinary subject. The full-time assignment is for a time-limited 4 years, with a go/no-go assessment at the end of the first year. The candidates are expected to finish the project with a PhD thesis and disseminate the results through publications in peer-reviewed journals, presentations at (inter)national conferences and patents (if applicable). The research will be carried out in Enschede and at TNO in Soesterberg. In accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, the gross monthly salary starts at € 2083,- gross per month in the first year, leading up to € 2664,- gross per month in the last year. Additionally, the University of Twente provides excellent facilities for professional and personal development, a holiday allowance (amounts to 8%) and an end-of-year bonus (amounts to 8.3%), and a number of additional benefits. Your main responsibility will be to carry out research, but you will be given the opportunity to acquire some teaching experience and participate in related TNO projects as well. 

The Organisation
The University of Twente stands for life sciences and technology. High tech and human touch. Education and research that matter. New technology which drives change, innovation and progress in society. The University of Twente is the only campus university in the Netherlands; divided over six faculties we provide more than fifty educational programmes. The University of Twente has a strong focus on personal development and talented researchers are given scope for carrying out pioneering research.
TNO connects people and knowledge to create innovations that boost the sustainable competitive strength of industry and well-being of society. TNO is an independent research organisation whose expertise and research make an important contribution to the competitiveness of companies and organisations, and to the economy and to the quality of society as a whole. We develop knowledge not for its own sake but for practical application. To create new products that make life more pleasant and valuable and help companies innovate. To find creative answers to the questions posed by society.

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