2 PhD fellows in Haptics and Human-Computer Interaction

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 10 Dec 2020

At the Human Centered Computing Section, at Department of Computer Science, we are looking to hire two PhD students to work on haptics in human-computer interaction. The students will start 15 February 2021 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Description of the scientific environment

These positions offer an opportunity to join a globally recognized, highly collaborative group of international researchers working at the forefront of Human-Centered Computing. We are located in Copenhagen, consistently recognized as one of the world’s most-livable cities, in the country of Denmark, ranked as one of the top three happiest countries in the world. Our section aspires to be a top research environment for human-computer interaction that bridges technology, theory, and empirical studies. We are currently eight faculty (Daniel Ashbrook, Joanna Bergström, Pernille Bjørn, Kasper Hornbæk, Søren Kyllingsbæk, Hasti Seifi, Irina Shklovski, Katarzyna Wac).

Project description
The PhD fellows will work at the intersection of haptics and human-computer interaction. The fellows will be part of an EU project called TOUCHLESS, with six partners across Europe. The project investigates the next generation of haptic technologies, aiming to use the tactile information channel to create meaningful social interactions and radically improve user experiences in remote and virtual interaction. In particular, the project focuses on touchless, haptic interfaces (e.g., ultrasound technology). The focus of the work in Copenhagen is on models of haptic experiences and interaction principles for touchless haptics as well as toolkits for creating such experiences. As a PhD student you have much freedom to detail this focus: to a large extent, you shape the research you work on and the ideas you pursue.

Principal supervisor is Professor Kasper Hornbæk, Department of Computer Science. Co-supervisors are Assistant Professor Joanna Bergström and Assistant Professor Hasti Seifi, both at Department of Computer Science. Please contact Kasper Hornbæk at kash@diku.dk or +45 30957883 with enquires.

Job description

The positions are available for a 3-year period. Your key tasks as a PhD student at SCIENCE are:

  • To manage and carry through your research project
  • Attend PhD courses
  • Write scientific articles and your PhD thesis
  • Teach and disseminate your research
  • To stay at an external research institution for a few months, preferably abroad
  • Work for the department

Formal requirements

The requirements for the positions are as follows:

  • Master degree in Computer Science, Human–computer Interaction, Psychology, Cognitive Science, Physiology, Biomechanics, Mechanical Engineering, Computer and Electrical Engineering or related fields.
  • Knowledge or skills related to at least one of the topics of the project, including, haptics human-computer interaction, haptic interaction design, haptics in virtual reality, social touch, tactile perception, user experience, sensing technology, or related topics.
  • Strong programming skills
  • Proficiency in English, both in speaking and writing.

Additionally, candidates need to stand out in at least one of the following key criteria of excellence used for the assessment:

  • Grades that document an outstanding academic record
  • Scientific publication(s) in recognized, peer-reviewed venues
  • Awards and honors
  • Professional qualifications and work experience

Terms of employment

The position is covered by the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff.

Terms of appointment and payment accord to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State.

The starting salary is currently at a minimum DKK 331,125 (approx. €43,750) including annual supplement (+ pension at a minimum DKK 53,811). Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.

Application Procedure

The application, in English, must be submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

Please include

  • Letter of motivation (max. two pages) that includes a description of how the qualifications are met
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Master thesis as PDF (final or in draft)
  • Assessment of master thesis (provisional or final)
  • Transcripts of grades, documenting an outstanding academic record. Unless the candidate’s diploma and transcripts of grades are in Danish or English, the candidate should procure a certified translation. Furthermore, the candidate must include official information about the grading scale.
  • 1-3 reference letters (if any) as PDF.
  • If applicable, PDFs of up to three scientific publications that you have co-authored.

The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

The deadline for applications is 4 December 2020, 23:59 GMT +1.

After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the Interview Committee. Afterwards an assessment committee will be appointed to evaluate the selected applications. The applicants will be notified of the composition of the committee and the final selection of a successful candidate will be made by the Head of Department, based on the recommendations of the assessment committee and the interview committee.

The main criterion for selection will be the research potential of the applicant and the abovementioned skills. The successful candidate will then be requested to formally apply for enrolment as a PhD student at the PhD school of Science. You can read more about the recruitment process at https://employment.ku.dk/faculty/recruitment-process/ .


For specific information about the PhD scholarship, please contact the principal supervisor Professor Kasper Hornbæk, Department of Computer Science, kash@diku.dk , +45 30957883.

General information about PhD programmes at SCIENCE is available at https://www.science.ku.dk/phd .

Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.

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