Research Associate in Computational Neuroscience

University of Sheffield - Faculty of Engineering

Contract Type: 36 months (with potential to extend)

We are seeking a motivated computational neuroscientist to answer a key question: what does the insect protocerebrum do? This is an exciting opportunity to join a dynamic team at the beginning of the ambitious ‘Brains on Board’ research project; the honey bee is a working example of a capable autonomous agent, whose competences the Brains on Board project is seeking to emulate using quadrotor UAVs running neural-based models of the honey bee brain. Regions of protocerebrum are implicated in behavioural switching and decision-making, which is essential for true robot autonomy. The successful candidate will build models of protocerebral function, using our in-house tools SpineCreator and SpineML (http://spineml.github.io), which can then be deployed on aerial robotic hardware for real world testing. This role requires a high degree of autonomy, and includes considerable scope for creativity.

The successful candidate will have a PhD in computational neuroscience or a related discipline, and experience particularly in systems neuroscience and neural network modelling. The candidate will have excellent modelling and analytic skills, with knowledge of decision-making theory and mechanisms. In pursuing their duties the selected candidate will also contribute to the Department of Computer Science’s objectives to be amongst the foremost research-led departments nationally and internationally.

The Department of Computer Science (http://www.shef.ac.uk/dcs) is a research-led Department, ranked fifth nationally by GPA in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework exercise. The Department of Computer Science holds an Athena Silver award.

We are committed to exploring flexible working opportunities which benefit the individual and University.

We’re one of the best not-for-profit organisations to work for in the UK. The University’s Total Reward Package includes a competitive salary, a generous Pension Scheme and annual leave entitlement, as well as access to a range of learning and development courses to support your personal and professional development.

We build teams of people from different heritages and lifestyles whose talent and contributions complement each other to greatest effect. We believe diversity in all its forms delivers greater impact through research, teaching and student experience.

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Northern England