Postdoctoral Researcher  – Explainable Artificial Intelligence for Bias Detection from Data to Model predictions
Posted : 6 December 2022
Closes : 21 December 2022
Location : Galway

Postdoctoral Researcher  – Explainable Artificial Intelligence for Bias Detection from Data to Model predictions

Insight Research Centre for Data Analytics, School of Computer Science

Ref. No. University of Galway 321-22

Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for a full-time fixed term 18-month contract position as a Postdoctoral Researcher with the SFI Insight Centre for Data Analytics based in the school of computer science at the University of Galway, Ireland. This position is funded mainly by Insight Research Centre and part-funded by Genesys and is available from 05 January 2023 to the contract end date of 30 June 2024.

The School of Computer Science is ambitious and growing, and we invite the new appointees to contribute to this together with us. The vision of the School of Computer Science is to build a strong and sustainable learning environment with world-recognised research that informs high-quality undergraduate and postgraduate teaching that is inclusive and relevant to the needs of our stakeholders and society in general. The School of Computer Science was initially established in 1991 as the Information Technology Discipline, and became a School in 2019, recognising its growth and significance.

SFI Insight Centre for Data Analytics at the University of Galway is a branch of the nationwide Insight Centre for Data Analytics. The centre performs fundamental and applied research in a range of research areas to enable this, including machine/deep learning, multimodal data analysis, data streams, and sensor networks, knowledge discovery, natural language processing, social semantics, and social network analysis, among others. Research outcomes are applied in use cases across a range of domains, including eGovernment, financial services, manufacturing, eHealth, and Life Sciences.

Project: Machine learning, including deep learning, is used in various key decision-making systems. The model in DL has a set of hidden layers that learn from the input directly without any explicit feature engineering stage; which can lead to difficulty in understanding, interpretability, and explainability. Explainable Artificial Intelligence (XAI) is trying to help in understanding the “black box” decision-making of ML/DL algorithms and models so that decisions are transparent, understandable, and trustworthy. Bias exists at various stages of a machine learning pipeline therefore, this project is about exploring XAI approaches, tools, models, opensource datasets, and understanding e.g., bias in datasets, algorithms, performance metrics for fairness, and then coming up with techniques or algorithms that can help in mitigating and/or avoiding bias.

Job Description: The postdoctoral researcher will be expected to perform a leading role in a project related to explainable artificial intelligence for bias detection in various stages of a machine learning pipeline. The researcher will have the opportunity to work with a team including academics, researchers from acidaemia, and industry to better understand the problem and come up with solutions that can help avoid bias and explain the decision of ML/DL models. The researcher will participate in meetings with academics and industry partner. In addition, the successful candidate will contribute to working on other project proposals with the Principal Investigator. The researcher will be based mainly in the Data Mining and Machine Learning group in the School of Computer Science and will be part of the Insight SFI Research Centre for Data Analytics at the University of Galway. The researcher will be supported in their professional development, will be able to avail of a range of career level focussed training opportunities, and will have the potential to publish research findings in leading conferences, indexed journals, and international events.

The researcher will support the activities of the project through the provision of research and administrative assistance and will work under the direction of the principal investigator, Dr. Ihsan Ullah.



  • Conduct a specified programme of research and scholarship under the supervision and direction of your Principal Investigator.
  • Actively participate as a member of a research team and conduct a particular study/ies in explainable AI for various types of inputs in ML/DL model.
  • Collaborate with in/across centre or schools, locally or internationally with other researchers and industry partners.
  • To provide assistance in conducting research activities, including planning, organizing, conducting, and communicating research studies within the overall scope of a research project and research strategy whilst contributing to the research programme of the College/School/Research Unit. This will be under general guidance of Principal Investigator.
  • Conduct literature and database searches and interpret and present the findings of the literature searches as appropriate.
  • Engage in Education and Public Engagement (EPE) activities of the School.
  • Develop and maintain Knowledge and understanding of the policy, practices and procedures, relevant to the role, which may include broader University/sector/external sponsor or funder (e.g. Commercial Awareness, Research Ethics, Knowledge Transfer, Patents, Intellectual Property Rights, Health and Safety, Equal Opportunities & Diversity, legal requirements regarding data protection and confidentiality).

Write up & Disseminate

  • Engage in the dissemination of the results of the research with the support of and under the supervision of your Principal Investigator.
    • Write up results from own research activity.
    • Publish on a regular basis in reputable conferences, journals, workshops, or books.
    • Assess research findings for the need/scope for further investigations / commercial exploitation (patents / commercial application (as appropriate).
    • Translate knowledge of advances in the subject area into research activity.
  • Communicate the research with their peers
  • Attend and network at relevant conferences and meeting hosted by relevant professional institutions and other universities as appropriate.
  • Supporting PI in proposal writing for future local and international funding.


  • To coordinate and perform a variety of independent tasks and team activities involved in the collection, analysis, documentation, and some interpretation of information/results.
  • Plan and manage own day-to-day research activity within this framework & direction.
  • Managing a small research team/co-ordinating other researcher activity
  • Provide advice, guidance and/or assistance required to any support staff and/or research students assisting with the research project, as agreed with the Principal Investigator.
  • To perform other related duties incidental to the work described herein.
  • Manage own research budget, if any, and keep records as directed and in line with Funder/University policy as appropriate.

Qualifications/Skills required:

Essential Requirements:

  • PhD in Computer Science or another field with specialisation in deep/machine learning, computer vision, explainable AI, text analysis, Bias, or Fairness in AI
  • Excellent understanding of experimental design and scientific methodologies
  • Strong command of oral and written English
  • Good programming skills and evidence of previously completed software projects
  • In depth experience with expertise in deep learning libraries in Python or other languages

Desirable Requirements:

  • Strong publication record
  • Track record of contribution to open-source projects.
  • Experience with proposal writing and knowhow of fundings
  • Experience with organising special issue, tracks, workshops, or conferences
  • Substantial publications relevant to computer science (deep learning, XAI, Fair AI, etc.)

Salary: €41,209 to €43,699 per annum pro rata for shorter and/or part-time contracts (public sector pay policy rules pertaining to new entrants will apply).

Start date: Position is available from 20th January 2023

Continuing Professional Development/Training:

Further information on research and working at University of Galway is available on Research at University of Galway 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 for further information.

For information on moving to Ireland please see

Further information about the School of Computer Science and Data Science Institute is available at School of Computer Science – University of Galway

Informal enquiries concerning the post may be made to Dr Ihsan Ullah (

NB: Gárda vetting is a requirement for this post (as appropriate to Child Protection Policy)

To Apply: Applications to include a covering letter, CV, and the contact details of three referees should be sent, via e-mail (in word or PDF only) to Dr Ihsan Ullah:

Please put reference number University of Galway 321-22 in subject line of e-mail application.

Closing date for receipt of applications is 5.00 pm 21st December 2022

We reserve the right to re-advertise or extend the closing date for this post.

The University of Galway is an equal opportunities employer.

All positions are recruited in line with Open, Transparent, Merit (OTM) and Competency based recruitment