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17 February, 2012

PhD Position at the Centre for Policy Modelling on: Data-mining, Visualisation and Agent-Based Modelling

PhD Position at the Centre for Policy Modelling on:
Data-mining, Visualisation and Agent-Based Modelling

Stipend: £13,290 per annum + applicable fees for 3 years 


Applications are invited to apply for this fully-funded doctoral position at the Centre for Policy Modelling, to investigate some of the potential synergies between data-mining, visualisation techniques and agent-based modelling.  This studentship is within the umbrella of the SCID project (scid-project.org), funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council’s Cross-disciplinary Interfaces Programme, 'Complexity Science in the Real World'.  This project is in association with the University of Manchester's Institute for Social Change and its Department of Theoretical Physics.  This is a high-profile and ambitious project that aims to develop a new approach to using simulations to gain understanding of important social issues.  The project is from September 2010 to August 2015 so the funding will end August 2015.

The period of study will involve the development of techniques to apply data-mining, visualisation and agent-based simulation in innovative and complementary ways drawing on the evidence and data from the SCID project, which is centered around 3 areas: diversity, homophily and social trust, socio-political integration, and socio-economic inequality.  Thus the data and target of the techniques and approaches developed would be to do with one of these areas.

The data and evidence will be provided by experts at the Institute for Social Change. The central challenge of the PhD will be to find synergies between data-mining, visualisation techniques and agent-based modelling, for example: visualising the output from simulations, using data-mining techniques to inform the specification of agent-based models, or using data-mining to locate “phases” in the behaviour of simulations. Depending on the exact area identified for investigation this studentship will be jointly supervised with the department for computer science.

Applicants should preferably have a Masters-level degree in a relevant discipline, preferably with an element of computer science or computational social science. The candidate should thus have a reasonable level programming and/or simulation experience. The candidate has to be an EU national and not already have a PhD.
The CPM is a world-leading research centre in social simulation.  Since its inception in 1992 it has developed its unique blend of trans-disciplinary research, crossing the areas of: artificial intelligence, complexity science, philosophy and computational social science (to get an idea of its scope browse its discussion papers).  It has built up a reputation and track-record over that time being involved in a number of EU and UK projects (Ocopomo, EMIL, Nania, NeWater, GIACS, CAVES, CCDEW, FIRMA, IMIS).  The CPM is a happy, informal but creative lab.  For more information about the work of the Centre see its website at http://cfpm.org

For informal discussions about the post, contact Bruce Edmonds on +44 (0) 161 247 6479 or email bruce@edmonds.name.  

To apply, send a CV with a covering letter to Bruce Edmonds, Centre for Policy Modelling, MMUBS, Aytoun Building, Aytoun Street, M1 3GH, UK.  Closing date for applications: 16h March 2011.

The University is committed to an Equal Opportunities Policy.