PhD Position in Umea University Sweden

PhD student in Responsible Artificial Intelligence at Umea, Sweden, Apr 2022


PhD student position in responsible Artificial Intelligence (AI) with a focus on explainable AI (XAI) and human control is available for applicants with master’s degree at the Department of Computing Science, Umeå University, Sweden, April, 2022.

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General Info

Position: PhD Fellow
No. of Positions: 1
Research Field: ,
Deadline to Apply: Expired
Joining Date: 1st August 2022
Contract Period: 4 - 5 Years
Salary: According to standard norms

Department of Computing Science

Umeå University (UMU), Sweden


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Qualification Details

General admission requirements

The general admission requirements for doctoral studies are a second-cycle level degree, or completed course requirements of at least 240 ECTS credits, of which at least 60 ECTS credits are at second-cycle level, or have an equivalent education from abroad, or equivalent qualifications. To fulfil the specific entry requirements for doctoral studies in computing science, the applicant is required to have completed at least 90 ECTS credits in computing science. Applicants who otherwise have acquired skills that are deemed equivalent are also eligible.

Specific admission requirements

Candidates are expected to have very good knowledge in the field of Artificial Intelligence.

Most specifically, the successful candidate must have:

  • Master’s degree or other equivalent degree on AI;
  • Strong programming background;
  • Experience in formal reasoning and logic modelling;
  • Demonstrable knowledge of at least one of the following topics of AI: human oversight/control, XAI, transparency; and cognitive or other AI systems architectures; and
  • A strong interest in the socio-technical governance of AI.

Industrial experience, in fields related to this position, is also considered meritorious. scientific publications in the field of responsible AI could be considered a merit.

The student must have the following personal attributes:

  • Ability to work in a team consisting of multiple stakeholders;
  • Capacity to work independently;
  • Ability to set and meet deadlines; and
  • Effective communication, both written and oral.

Excellent command of the English language, both written and spoken, is required.

Responsibilities/Job Description

This position is funded by the EXPLAIN project, run as part of Eureka AI cluster (AI2021-86). The EXPLAIN project aims to develop an end-to-end Machine Learning (ML) lifecycle that is interactive and explainable to industrial domain experts and end users. In the EXPLAIN lifecycle, both domain and ML experts are involved in developing and validating the model. Stakeholder-specific explanations will be used to review, validate, and update if needed the model until all identified requirements are met. During the deployment and usage phases, explanations will be generated to enable the calibration of trust and human supervision of the model.

The PhD student will work closely with industrial and with industrial and academic project partners, such as ABB, Signify, TU Delft, Linköping University, and others, to:i) develop a conceptual framework of how users (both domain and technical experts) interact with the system at the different phases of its lifecycle;ii) identify what information should be included at explanations at each phase of the system’s lifecycle;iii) develop formal representations of explanations and interactions between the users and model; andiv) participate in testing the final project output.

The student will be affiliated with the Responsible AI group, led by Prof. Virginia Dignum, at the Department of Computing Science. The group consists of 14 people, five of which are doctoral students. The research group has an international reputation for research excellence in the field of responsible AI with its research published at leading scientific venues including IJCAI, AAMAS, Nature Communications, and others. The group is also affiliated with national and international research projects, such as the Wallenberg AI (WASP), Autonomous Systems and Software Program, HumanE-AI-Net, and others. Its work has been featured in the press and policy reports. You can read more about the Responsible AI group and its research:

The student will also be eligible to apply for affiliation with the Wallenberg AI, Autonomous Systems and Software Program – Humanities and Society (WASP-HS) program and its grad school to further increase their skills development and build their professional network.  The WASP-HS graduate school provides foundations, perspectives, and state-of-the-art knowledge in the different disciplines taught by leading researchers. It thus provides added value on top of the existing PhD programs at the hosting university, providing unique opportunities for students who are dedicated to achieving international research excellence in research and other activities conducted within WASP-HS. Please visit

How to Apply?

Application Method: Online Application
Ref. No.: AN 2.2.1-567-22

Application Procedure

Applications must be submitted electronically using the e-recruitment system of Umeå University.

A complete application should contain the following documents:

  • A cover letter including a description of your research interests, your reasons to apply for the position, and your contact information
  • A curriculum vitae
  • Certified reprints / copies of completed BSc and/or MSc theses and other relevant publications, if any
  • Copies of degree certificates, including documentation of completed academic courses and obtained grades
  • Documentation and description of other relevant experiences or competences.

The application must be written in English or Swedish. Attached documents must be in pdf format. Applications must be submitted electronically using the e-recruitment system of Umeå University.

The Department of Computing Science values gender diversity, and therefore particularly encourages women and those outside the gender binary to apply for the position.

About the Department

To our department, characterized by world-leading research in several scientific fields and a multitude of educations ranked highly in international comparison, we now look for a doctoral student in responsible Artificial Intelligence (AI) with a focus on explainable AI (XAI) and human control.

The Department of Computing Science has been growing rapidly in recent years where inclusivity and a bottom-up driven environment are key elements in our sustainable growth. The 50 doctoral students within the department consists of a diverse group from different nationalities, background and fields. As a doctoral student with us you receive the benefits of support in career development, networking, administrative and technical support functions along with good employment conditions. See more information at:

About the Employer:


The position provides you with the opportunity to pursue PhD studies in Computing Science for four years, with the goal of achieving the degree of Doctor in Computing Science. While the position is mainly devoted to PhD studies (at least 80% of the time), it may include up to 20% department service (usually teaching). If so, the total time for the position is extended accordingly, resulting in a maximum of five years.

The procedure for recruitment for the position is in accordance with the Higher Education Ordinance (chapter 12, 2§) and the decision regarding the position cannot be appealed.

Starting date 1 August 2022 or based on agreement.

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Contact details

For additional information, please contact Dr. Andreas Theodorou ([email protected]).

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