Postdoctoral Researcher in GenZ / Human-Centred Design and Digitalisation

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 15 Aug 2021

We, at the University of Oulu, work as part of the international science community to produce new scientific information and science-based solutions. We are committed to educate future pioneers to build a more sustainable, intelligent and humane world. Creating new, taking responsibility and succeeding together build strong foundation in all our actions. We offer a working environment where individuals can cultivate their skills, do meaningful work, and develop professionally. Our university's several specialized research and service units enable extensive and diverse development and career opportunities for experts in various fields. https://www.oulu.fi/en

Generation Z and Beyond (GenZ) is a programme and hub designed to do world-class interdisciplinary research on strengthening human capabilities in the new digital era. The GenZ Hub includes researchers in the following faculties: Faculty of Education, Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Science (Human geography) and Oulu Business School. The programme’s focus is important as new technologies and technological solutions (e.g. artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, virtual/augmented/mixed reality, robotics, 5G/6G) are becoming more intelligent, invisible and ubiquitous. New discoveries in the programme will build on interdisciplinary collaboration. They will provide transformative knowledge aiming to strengthen human skills and competences in all walks of life as digital technologies continue to develop. In this context, GenZ's mission is to 1) identify and describe human practices, processes and strategies that are natural to human beings and which technologies and machines lack, 2) create knowledge about the still unknown features of changing work-life, 3) strengthen intelligent behaviour of individuals, communities and ecosystems, and 4) renew research methods in human sciences to respond to new and rising questions in the GenZ area. The GenZ community in Oulu includes 24 PIs linked to three research areas: Co-evolution, Co-creation and Resilience (see http://www.oulu.fi/university/genz ).

We now open a postdoctoral researcher position in the area of Human-centred design and digitalisation (Information Systems). Background of the applicant for the position needs to be in in Information Systems or Human-Computer Interaction, or a related field with a clear contact with technology. The position will be opened within INTERACT research unit (Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, University of Oulu, Finland http://interact.oulu.fi ).

We expect the applicant to have an interest in digital transformation of the society and understanding and strengthening human participation in the shaping and making of their digital futures. The applicant’ research interest builds on approaches that place emphasis on people’s empowerment and inclusion in designing, shaping, innovating and co-creating digital technology in their everyday lives and as part of their everyday practices. The applicant will have a solid background in qualitative, interpretive and/or participatory research traditions or interest to conduct such research. The applicant’s theoretical and methodological expertise will provide substantive contribution to research exploring and enabling novel, emerging and empowering forms of human-centred design and digitalisation, taking also the wider perspective of the changing society.

The applicant needs to have proven theoretical and methodological background in the above-mentioned research area.

Conditions and requirements 

The person appointed for the positions will become a part of a major expansion of the university’s profiling area Generation Z and beyond: Co-evolution of human capabilities and intelligent technologies in the 21st century (GenZ, http://www.oulu.fi/university/genz ). The appointed person is expected to conduct rigorous, nationally and internationally recognized research.

The successful applicant must hold a PhD degree in relevant field. When assessing the postdoc applicant’s merits, issues to be considered will include scientific publications, teaching experience, theses supervised, activity in the scientific community, success in acquiring external funding, scientific work abroad, and other international activities. A good applicant has a proven record of high-quality scientific research and publications on the project topics.

The salary will be based on levels 5-6 of the requirement level chart for teaching and research personnel in the salary system of Finnish universities. In addition to the basic salary, supplementary salary will be given for personal achievement and performance, the sum rising to a maximum of 50% of the basic salary level for the post. The salary is paid for 12 months in a year. The successful candidate will receive also full benefits provided by the University of Oulu to all its employees, including free time corresponding to holidays and free occupational health care services. The position includes teaching obligation.

How to apply

Applications must be submitted using the electronic application form by August 15, 2021, 23:59 (Finnish local time). Applications sent by email will not be considered. Applications will not be returned. 

The following documents must be attached to the application (to be submitted in English):

  • Cover/motivation letter describing prior background, research interests and career plans, maximum two (2) pages.
  • Curriculum vitae formatted according to the template of the Finnish Advisory Board on Research Integrity (http://www.tenk.fi/en/template-researchers-curriculum-vitae).
  • List of publications formatted according to the template of the Academy of Finland (https://www.aka.fi/en/funding/apply-for-funding/az-index-of-application-guidelines/list-of-publications/ ), so that the six (6) publications most relevant to the position are clearly marked.
  • Contact information of two-three (2-3) persons, who may be asked to give a statement on the candidate.
  • Decisions will be made during September. The applicant should be able to start working October 1, 2021 and the contract period ends in December 2022. A six-month trial period will be applied in the position.

    More information:

    Professor Netta Iivari, e-mail: netta.iivari@oulu.fi  (Please note that due to university`s holiday season in July, there may be a delay in responses).

    About the City of Oulu

    The City of Oulu is Northern Finland’s largest and oldest city, with a population of over 200,000. Located in the Gulf of Bothnia in the Oulu River delta, the city has good access from anywhere. Oulu is a very safe and family friendly community with one of the highest qualities of life in all of Scandinavia. This modern city with a beautiful harbour and market area offers plenty of cultural activities as well as opportunities for exploring the northern nature. Open space and parks can be found all along the Oulu River and throughout the area and they are easily accessed by bike – the favourite mode of transport in Oulu. There is an entire range of outdoor and sports facilities to choose from, not forgetting Finland’s biggest spectator sport, ice hockey. Winter is a season that is highly celebrated and lit bike trails and bridges bring the city alive. As the world’s northernmost tech hub, Oulu has a highly educated and innovative workforce and the University has a strong role in the community. Oulu is a marvellous place to live, work and enjoy a vibrant academic community. Welcome to the home of science with Arctic Attitude!


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