Two Senior Postdocs at UCC / LERO in Responsible Software Engineering

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Jim Buckley

May 12, 2022, 4:28:18 AM5/12/22
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Two Senior Post-Doctoral Researcher positions (30 months) to work on the Lero project on Responsible Software Engineering have been advertised with a deadline for applications of Friday, 10 June 2022.

The Researchers will be based at University College Cork (Ireland) and will work directly with a group of HCI and Software Engineering Lero colleagues in University College Cork and University of Limerick. They will also have the opportunity to work with Lero Research Groups in other Irish universities to the mutual benefit of their Lero Projects and the RSE Project.

The post details and application process is available here: 

If you experience any problems with that link, you can also see the vacancy and details at this webpage using the Reference Number 056191.

Informal enquiries can be made in confidence to


Position Summary

We invite applications from suitably qualified Senior Post-Doctoral Researchers to work on a multi-disciplinary project on Responsible Software Engineering (RSE).

People live with Algorithms, AI, Big Data, Ubiquitous and Pervasive Computing, and Decision-Support Systems. But we also live with news reports, direct experiences and concerns about scamming or phishing, about how our confidential/health records can be subject to cyber-attacks, and even about how our very on-line interactions may harm us (opening email attachments, neglecting a field in our on-line job application that automatically disqualifies us for the job). These sociotechnical systems play roles in how we live, search for information, organise, socialise, and work together. They have a strong presence in our lives, often without our knowledge, and they can impinge on how secure, trusting or comfortable we feel with the decisions we make and the (system-mediated) actions we take.

Although there is growing body of research on Software Ethics (e.g. ethical compliance, frameworks and disposition), the scope of our interest in this research project extends beyond the ethical. Arguably, people will only be able to take advantage of the social value of technologies like AI when trust and trustworthy practices align. With these opportunities and reservations in mind, this project focuses on Responsible Software Engineering, and the reflexive practices and values entailed in it, with a view to giving focussed attention to ‘representing and enriching lived experience, supported by software, and not bounded by it’.

Aligning ‘responsibility’ with ethical and societal concerns (concerns like unlawful discrimination and undermining democracy) foregrounds critical reflection on what it means to improve the state of the world through software engineering and practice, including how to (and ‘who’ to) judge whether one state of the world is better than another. Civic education can play an important role in answering these questions and in preparing future citizens to continue to answer them.

With these interests in mind, the RSE Project has been developed by Lero colleagues from a number of disciplinary backgrounds including: Software Engineering, Human-Computer Interaction, Interaction Design, Applied Psychology, Sociotechnical Systems, Information Systems, and Public Engagement.  The project is organised around four challenges:

To develop understanding(s) of reflexively responsible Software Engineering.

To understand Responsible Software Engineering as an embedded socio-technical practice by assessing the current state of RSE practice in cutting-edge software development projects.

To derive, develop and evaluate tools and practices for experiential practice-based understanding of Responsible Software Engineering.

To specify the education needed for citizens to be able to act knowledgeably in modern IT society; an integral part of reflexive RSE, founded in trusting and trustworthy relationships.

We wish to appoint 2 Senior Post-Doctoral Researchers to work together full-time on this project for 30 months. Between them, the Senior Post-Doctoral Researchers will have the skills to deliver on the four challenges above. Core strengths in Software Engineering and Human Computer Interaction would be particularly valuable. However, we would welcome applications from researchers in cognate areas who make the case in their application for the relevance of their skills and experience to the project. Moreover, it would be helpful to us if candidates with, say, a strong Software background (Software Engineering, Information Systems, etc.) could demonstrate experience and/or interest in the complementary research area (e.g. HCI, Interaction Design, CSCW) and vice versa.

Applicants should have obtained their PhD in a relevant area and be able to demonstrate ability to work independently and in a multidisciplinary team.

Project Title: Responsible Software Engineering (RSE)

Post Duration: 30 months

Salary: €48,242 - €51,035 p.a. (IUA Salary Scale)

For an information package including further details of the post see

Informal enquiries can be made in confidence to Professor John McCarthy at

Applications must be submitted online via the University College Cork vacancy portal ( Queries relating to the online application process should be referred to, quoting the job-title and project name.

Candidates should apply, in confidence, before 12 noon (Irish Local Time) on Friday, 10 June 2022. No late applications will be accepted.

Please note that an appointment to posts advertised will be dependent on University approval, together with the terms of the employment control framework for the higher education sector.

UCC is committed to creating and fully embracing an inclusive environment where diversity is celebrated.  As a University we strive to create a workplace that reflects the diversity of our student population where people from a wide variety of backgrounds learn from one another, share ideas, and work collaboratively. UCC is committed to being an employer that recognises the value of diversity amongst its staff.  We encourage applicants to consult our policies at and initiatives at and we welcome applications from everyone, including those who are underrepresented in the protected characteristics set out in our Equal Opportunities & Diversity Policy.


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