[Elsnet-list] Postdoctoral position in La Rochelle

Antoine Doucet antoine.doucet at univ-lr.fr
Mon Nov 24 18:48:21 CET 2014

Please find below the announcement of a postdoctoral position in the 
University of La Rochelle, France.

If you have a Ph.D in computer science and you have working knowledge in 
the fields of NLP, IR, Big data and/or ontologies, and if you like the 
idea of joining a dynamic research group that lies within walking 
distances of 3 different beaches, please let us know!

Please note the short deadline: 1 December 2014!!

(apologies for cross-posting)


Spatiotemporal analysis of touristic events

The L3i laboratory, within the Tourinflux project 
(http://www.tourinflux.com/) is seeking a postdoctoral researcher in 
computer science, on the topic of the spatiotemporal analysis of 
touristic events.

Length: 14 months

Expected recruitment: 1stof January 2015

Net salary: 2100 € monthly

Location: L3i laboratory, La Rochelle, France

Fields: Computer Science / Semantic Web / Natural Language Processing

Keywords: E-tourism, spatiotemporal events, NLP, Normalisation 
(schema.org, TourInFrance), Semantic Web, Data analysis

Job description:

The work will be conducted in the informatics, image and interaction 
laboratory (L3i), within the Tourinflux project, supported by funding 
from a program of “investment for the future“ (PIA). The L3i is a 
120-person laboratory created in 1993. Hosted in the historical and 
sunny city of La Rochelle (http://www.holidays-la-rochelle.co.uk/), it 
is ranked A by the French research evaluation agency (AERES).

In addition to the L3i, the Tourinflux project involves 2 companies and 
an association of companies, in collaboration with several actors of the 
French tourism industry. The project aims at providing the tourism 
industry with with a set of tools allowing them to handle both their 
internal data, and the information available on the Web, so as to better 
diagnose and influence on the perception of territories. The tools 
currently available are insufficient, and a lot of the data gathering, 
analysis and processing is currently done by hand, or via the use of 
various partially adequate tools. Tourinflux aims to provide an 
extensive dashboard, allowing all institutions, whatever their size, to 
visualize and interprete the information available about their 
territory. This should allow them to improve their decision process and 
subsequently, their effectiveness.

Specifically, this postdoctoral position will be focused on the analysis 
and the representation of touristic events within a knowledge base. A 
first step was already completed, allowing to analyze texts in natural 
language, so as to grasp the opening hours of touristic objects. It is 
now time to enrich and contextualize the text mark-up, so as to 
structure the data and let it be usable within the main process of 
Tourinflux. A phase of modeling and standardizing of the representation 
schemas of touristic objects is already engaged. The postdoctoral work 
will consist in two main tasks:


    Semi-automated semantic-based structuration of tourist information:

Tourism information is both heterogeneous (free text, Web page, 
pictures, …) and semi-structured. Structuring information is a major 
challenge at a time when the masses of unstructured information are 
constantly evolving, be it on the Web or within organisations. The 
classical processes of information structuring are manual or 
semi-automated, strongly dependent on the domain and its semantics. The 
applicant is to set up a semi-automated process for structuring 
touristic information. Two key challenges were identified:


    Adapting NLP techniques to the specific domain of tourism
    information, and extract the key features of the field


    Model the semantics of the domain, which seems to naturally fit a
    hierarchical structure, such as that of a thesaurus or an ontology


    Vertical search for tourism professionals

At first, a “classic” query-based information retrieval system is to be 
built. Next, further strategies shall be considered, exploiting the 
structure of the data set (logical as well as semantic). Faceted 
information retrieval seems to be one promising line of work, allowing 
the user to express an information need and then refine it through her 
browsing. Such mechanisms facilitate query refinement, which seems 
especially appropriate for the vertical search of tourism professional. 
The goals of this IR task are the following:


        To determine the minimal features of each touristic object, for
        faster information access. Both a statistical and logical
        approach can be envisaged, as well as a hybrid method.


        To set up the prototype of a faceted IR system, adapted to the
        specific needs of tourism professionals.

Specific requirements:

Candidates must have Ph.D. in computer science, with abilities in 
knowledge representation and data mining. Research experience is also 
required in at least 2 of the following domains:


    Natural Language Processing, Text mining


    Information Retrieval


    Big Data and Data Warehouses (eg, Hadoop)


    Modeling, Ontologies and inference engines


    Annotation and Evaluation methodologies


    Writing extraction grammars

General requirements:


    One or more of the following programming languages: Python, C/C++, java…


    Team-work skills (knowledge of Agile methodologies would be a plus)


    Proven ability for scientific writing

To apply:

All candidates are required to send a resume, an expression of interest, 
and the names and contact information of at least 2 references 
(including email adresses) to:

mickael.coustaty at univ-lr.fr

cyril.faucher at univ-lr.fr

frederic.bertrand at univ-lr.fr

antoine.doucet at univ-lr.fr

Please note that applications must be sent at the latest on Monday 1 

Antoine Doucet
Full Professor
L3i - Laboratoire Informatique, Image et Interaction
University of La Rochelle - IUT de La Rochelle

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