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Postdoctoral Research Associate

The University of Oklahoma
Norman, OK

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Position Type
Employment Type
Full Time
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
Postdoctoral Research Associate

Norman, OK
Open Date:
Nov 10, 2023

Basic Purpose/Job Function: 

The NSF AI Institute for Research on Trustworthy AI in Weather, Climate, and Coastal Oceanography (AI2ES) is an NSF funded AI Institute that brings together universities, government, and private industry to develop trustworthy AI for environmental science. AI2ES will uniquely benefit humanity by developing novel, physically based AI techniques that are demonstrated to be trustworthy, and will directly improve prediction, understanding, and communication of high-impact environmental hazards.  

As part of a new Expand AI grant with San Diego State University (SDSU) and the University of California - Irvine (UCI), we are seeking a postdoctoral research associate with expertise in machine learning and atmospheric science.  This postdoc will be employed by the University of Oklahoma and working with AI2ES director Dr Amy McGovern but will also be working directly with SDSU and UCI on research across the three locations. The new postdoc will be working to help advance the accuracy and explainability of AI/ML algorithms in reproducing the multiscale structure of precipitation and high-impact weather.

Position Summary     

The postdoc will be a key part of a team that is developing trustworthy AI for atmospheric science applications.  The postdoc will work with interdisciplinary collaborators across the AI2ES institute.  At OU, this will include working with the School of Computer Science and the School of Meteorology as well as colleagues at NOAA.   This is an exciting position that will allow the postdoc to work at the forefront of the development of trustworthy AI for a variety of environmental science applications.

This position is part of a large multi-institutional institute and there will be postdocs located throughout the partner institutions.  The University of Oklahoma is the lead and the partners include Colorado State University, the University at Albany, the University of Washington, North Carolina State University, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, Del Mar College (Corpus Christi), the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Google, IBM, NVIDIA, Disaster Tech, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Diversity Statement   

AI2ES is strongly committed to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion.  Candidates are expected to have the ability to advance the DEI mission and should address this in their statement.

Expected job duties

  • Research in trustworthy AI for environmental sciences (60% time)
    • The postdoc’s main duties are to develop and test trustworthy AI techniques including novel explainable AI and physically-based AI methods for environmental sciences
  • Knowledge transfer and institute level integration (25% time)
    • The postdoc is expected to integrate with SDSU and UCI as well as the other postdocs, students, and researchers throughout the institute.  This will involve travel to both UCI and SDSU.  It will also involve video meetings to other sites.  Additionally, the postdoc may be involved in working with students, if so desired.
  • Publishing and Sharing results (15% time)
    • The postdoc is expected to be actively publishing and presenting results at both AI and atmospheric sciences conferences/journals.  This may involve travel.

This position is for one year, with the option to renew up to three years based on performance.

Salary Range:  $75,000-80,000



Required Job Qualifications   

  • Ph.D. in Machine Learning/Artificial Intelligence, Mathematics, or Statistics with  experience in atmospheric sciences; OR a PhD in Atmospheric Science, Hydrologic Science, or a closely-related field with experience in Machine Learning/Artificial Intelligence.  Note the PhD does not need to be completed to apply for the position but must be completed prior to beginning the postdoc.
  • Experience with large spatiotemporal data sets 
  • Demonstrated experience of applying at least one machine learning or advanced statistical technique to an atmospheric-science-related problem.
  • Demonstrated curiosity, creativity and enthusiasm to learn new skills.
  • Experience pursuing research, both independently and as part of a research team.
  • The successful candidate must be legally authorized to work in the United States by the desired start date. AI2ES cannot provide visa sponsorship for this position.

Preferred Job Qualifications  

  • Experience with large atmospheric science data sets
  • Prior research studying atmospheric variability, extreme weather, or subseasonal-to-seasonal prediction.
  • Prior knowledge of a broad range of ML topics, as demonstrated by classes taken and/or research performed.
  • Prior experience collaborating across disciplines.
  • Experience with tensorflow (preferred) or pytorch
  • Experience with HPC systems
  • Experience with neural networks/deep learning 

Application Instructions:

Special Instructions to Applicants     

In your cover letter, please address all of the required and preferred qualifications. A complete application will include a cover letter, resume or CV, and the contact information of three professional references. References of the finalist candidates will be contacted for letters of recommendation; candidates will be notified prior to their references being contacted.

The successful candidate must be legally authorized to work in the United States by the desired start date. AI2ES will not provide visa sponsorship for this position.

If you have a need for hybrid or remote work, please mention that in your cover letter.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement:

The University of Oklahoma, in compliance with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, genetic information, gender identity, gender expression, age, religion, disability, political beliefs, or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices, or procedures. This includes, but is not limited to:  admissions, employment, financial aid, housing, services in educational programs or activities, or health care services that the University operates or provides.

Diversity Statement 

The University of Oklahoma is committed to achieving a diverse, equitable and inclusive university community by recognizing each person's unique contributions, background, and perspectives. The University of Oklahoma strives to cultivate a sense of belonging and emotional support for all, recognizing that fostering an inclusive environment for all is vital in the pursuit of academic and inclusive excellence in all aspects of our institutional mission.

Mission of the University of Oklahoma

The Mission of the University of Oklahoma is to provide the best possible educational experience for our students through excellence in teaching, research and creative activity, and service to the state and society.

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