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The University of Oxford is delighted to be awarded funding for up to six years as part of the Eric and Wendy Schmidt AI in Science Postdoctoral Fellowship Program and is seeking to award an initial 10 fellowships to start in early 2023. Fellows will be appointed for one year in the first instance, with the possibility of a second year. Fellowships will cover the award holder’s salary along with generous research and travel costs.

The Fellowship Programme will be integrated within Oxford’s Mathematical, Physical and Life Sciences Division (MPLS), which includes the University’s non-medical science departments, Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Earth Sciences, Engineering Science, Materials, Mathematics, Physics, and Statistics.

The research elements of the Fellowship programme will take place within the stimulating intellectual environment of research groups embedded within the academic departments of MPLS. Beyond MPLS, the Fellows will benefit greatly from the unparalleled breadth of research across Oxford. In particular, the Fellows will undertake learning on the social and ethical implications of AI, providing a grounding in issues on the motivations, governance, and security of the use of AI.


The University will provide individualised training to each of the Oxford-based Schmidt AI in Science Fellows, through the provision of a comprehensive programme of graduate level courses across the range of AI and ML to allow each fellow to develop their own knowledge of AI and software tools as their research programme unfolds.

Oxford will also provide extensive training and support from professional research software engineers (RSEs) with expertise in ML and AI to allow fellows to implement both existing methods and any new methods that they develop in a robust, sustainable, and reusable manner. From the onset of the project, RSEs will provide training in software engineering best practices, HPC and cloud computing resources, and collaborative tools including version control, enabling fellows to work individually or as a team to develop reproducible and reliable software. The aim is to provide fellows with a set of transferable software engineering skills and a significant advantage in their future careers.


The newly formed Reuben College focuses on three ‘big challenges of the 21st century,’ including AI and ML. It brings together computer scientists, engineers, mathematicians and statisticians, working on fundamental principles or applications of AI, but also neuroscientists and biologists interested in characterising human intelligence, philosophers working in philosophy of mind and social scientists exploring ethical issues. The postdocs supported by this programme will become ‘Associate Research Fellows’ of Reuben College, known as ‘AI in Science Fellows’. Fellows will be allocated a Reuben College mentor; and invited to attend quarterly presentation meeting, lectures and talks, and to participate in the academic and social life of the College. Reuben College recognises the importance of equality and diversity in advancing intellectual endeavours and is committed to ensuring that diversity is advanced and maintained within the growing fellowship, staff and student body.


Schmidt AI in Science Fellows will be invited to be part of the international Schmidt Futures network, providing high-level opportunities to view how AI is poised to transform engineering and scientific fields. For example, it is expected that each of the awardees will attend an AI in Science Conference annually, organized and funded by Schmidt Futures, which will enable them to interact, collaborate with and learn from one another, as well as thought leaders in AI and science around the world.