Postdoctoral Researcher – Data Science/Statistics School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences
Posted : 18 June 2024
Closes : 1 July 2024
Location : Galway

Postdoctoral Researcher – Data Science/Statistics School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences

College of Science and Engineering, SFI Centre for Data Analytics Ref. No. 010444


 Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for a full-time, fixed term position as a Postdoctoral Researcher in the SFI Insight Centre for Data Analytics and School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences at the University of Galway, Ireland.

The University is committed to embracing opportunities for hybrid working, to build a more dynamic, agile and responsive University, while sustaining strong standards of teaching, learning, research and high levels of productivity. The University will continue to be the primary workplace for all staff, however individual hybrid arrangement requests can be reviewed with the Line Manager in conjunction with the University Hybrid Working Policy.

This position is funded by the SFI Insight Centre for Data Analytics and is available from September 1st 2024 to contract end date of December 31st 2025.

This project is co- led by Prof. John Newell and Dr John Ferguson at the University of Galway in the Sonrai Health Data Science research group at the School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences in Galway as well as the Insight Centre for Data Analytics. This group’s aim is to develop theoretical and applied methods in statistical modelling, clinical trials design and analysis, functional data analysis, sensors and wearables, bioinformatics, sports analytics, climate change, epidemiology, cancer genomics, precision medicine and translational statistics.

Salary:  Postdoctoral  Researcher  salary  scale  €44,346  –  €56,764  per  annum,  (subject  to  the  project’s  funding limitations), and pro rata for shorter and/or part-time contracts.

The default position for all new public sector appointments is the 1st point of the salary scale. This may be reviewed, and consideration afforded to appointment at a higher point on the payscale (subject to the project’s funding limitations), where evidence of prior years’ equivalent experience is accepted in determining placement on the scale above point 1, subject to the maximum of the scale.

(Research Salary Scales – University of Galway)

Closing date for receipt of applications is 17:00 (Irish Time) on 1st  July 2024. It will not be possible to consider applications received after the closing date.

 Please review full job description for further details and essential requirement.

Job Description:

 Causal inference and machine learning were initially viewed as distinct areas of statistical science. However, recently many connections between these two areas have been established, and causal inference and machine learning are now often used in parallel. For instance, a recently popularised causal inference approach to derive estimates and confidence intervals for causal parameters requires substituting estimates from machine learning into influence functions. On the flip side, when the goal is prediction, insights from causal inference can improve the explainability and predictive accuracy of machine learning algorithms.

Explainability, when used in machine learning contexts, pertains to what input variables are driving the predictions of the target variable, both for individual observations, and over an entire ‘test’ dataset. If these ‘key’ inputs causally affect the target variable in a material way, the decisions made by such algorithms will be much easier to explain to stakeholders. Here techniques from causal inference (such as DAGs, propensity score regression, marginal structural models etc) can help determine whether the key predictors are causally related to the target variable, and if so how strong these relationships might be. The outputs from this research are applicable across all domains where observational data are used to estimate causal effects, determine causal pathways, and to develop explainable algorithms for prediction.

The successful candidate will explore in depth the connections, mentioned above, between causal inference and machine learning in applied contexts.


 Contribute to the research programme under general guidance of the Principal Investigators (PI).

  • Define research objectives and proposals in line with research
  • Determine appropriate methodologies for research, with advice and support as
  • Assess research findings for the need/scope for further investigations / commercial
  • Translate knowledge of advances in the subject area into research
  • Plan, co-ordinate and implement research
  • Contribute to the research project’s dissemination via publication in high impact journals in statistical science and related fields.
  • Where appropriate, work with PIs to register patents to protect intellectual property.
  • Any other duties assigned commensurate to this level of

Eligibility Requirements 

 Essential Requirements

  •  PhD (completed, or in final stages of completion – Thesis submitted) in Statistics, Data Science, or related discipline with significant statistical or data science
  • Demonstrable programming skills in
  • Knowledge of causal inference and machine learning
  • Evidenced ability to collaborate with other researchers in the University and industry partners, and/or experience of participation in interdisciplinary research projects.

Desirable Requirements

  • Well-developed ability to communicate technical concepts to non-experts.
  • Experience and/or publications in the statistical modelling of observational
  • Excellent interpersonal, project management and people management
  • Experience in biomedical data

Continuing Professional Development/Training:

Researchers at University of Galway are encouraged to avail of a range of training and development opportunities designed to support their personal career development plans. University of Galway provides continuing professional development supports for all researchers seeking to build their own career pathways either within or beyond academia. Researchers are encouraged to engage with our Researcher Development Centre (RDC) upon commencing employment – see HERE for further information.

Further Information/Links

 To apply: Jobs – University of Galway. Applications must be submitted

How to apply guide

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University of Galway is an equal opportunities

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