Imprecise Probability Research Position at IDSIA

July 28, 2014

There is an opening for a researcher position in the imprecise probability group at IDSIA.

The person hired on this position will evenly share her/his working time on two main activities:
-  basic research, aiming at publishing in highly rated journals and international conferences; and
-  applied research, by taking responsibility of cutting-edge projects in tight collaboration with companies.

A cross-activity will be the search for funding opportunies of both basic and applied research.

-   This position is for a junior researcher (say <= 35 years).
-   Doctorate degree and master degree with top grades in mathematics, or physics, or engineering, or informatics, or statistics or other quantitative areas.
-   Excellent theoretical as well as applied knowledge of Bayesian networks and other graphical models (in particular of structure/parameter learning) and modern data mining algorithms (in particular for classification and clustering, but regression and time series are also desirable). These skills have to be backed up by a good record track of technical papers.
-   Excellent mathematical skills.
-   Excellent (software-engineer-level) programming skills (C, C++, Java), knowledge of operating systems (Unix, Linux, Mac, Windows) and development tools (e.g., Eclipse).
-   Good knowledge of specialized mathematical/statistical environments, such as MATLAB and R.
-   Good knowledge of computational complexity theory.

(Soft skills)
-   Very good communication skills in spoken and written English.
-   Good knowledge of Italian or alternatively a commitment to learn it as soon as possible.
-   Ability to work in a team and in a collaborative environment.
-   Autonomy.

Highly desirable but not strictly required
-  Knowledge of imprecise probability (e.g., credal networks, credal classification, uncertainty modeling with sets of distributions).
-  Good knowledge of (Bayesian) statistics.
-  Good record track of granted research projects as main applicant or co-applicant.
-  Past experience of leading/working in applied research projects in collaboration with companies.
-  Good knowledge of German and French.

We offer
- A first two-year contract that constitutes an evaluation period (the evaluation period can possibly be extended). The positive feedback of performance appraisal leads to a permanent position.
-  A competitive swiss salary commensurate to the candidate’s age and experience.
-  Travel funding to participate to conferences, workshops and the like.
-  An international working environment.
-  Collaboration with experts in data mining, Bayesian networks, imprecise probability, statistics: the hired candidate will join in particular the imprecise probability group at IDSIA (
-  Opportunity to develop professional and scientific skills as well as career progression.

For more information and details about the application procedure, please contact Marco Zaffalon (

An Introduction to Likelihoodist, Bayesian, and Frequentist Methods (1/2)

July 21, 2014

(Cross-posted from


I have been recommending the first chapter of Elliott Sober’s Evidence and Evolution to those who ask for a good introduction to debates about statistical inference. That chapter is excellent, but it would nice to be able to recommend something shorter that is readily available online. Here is my attempt to provide a suitable source. Read the rest of this entry »

CfP: PROGIC 2015

July 21, 2014

Progic 2015: Probability and Logic will take place in Canterbury, England, 22-24 April, 2015.

Submission is cordially invited, and the deadline is 1st November, 2014.

We are calling for contributions to the seventh in the PROGIC series of conferences, which seeks to address the questions of whether, and if so, how, probability and logic should be combined. The 2015 conference will also be interested in connections between formal epistemology and inductive logic. Can inductive logic shed light on epistemological questions to do with belief, judgement etc.? Can epistemological considerations lead to a viable notion of inductive logic?

Invited speakers include:

  • Richard Bradley
  • Dorothy Edgington
  • John Norton
  • Jeanne Peijnenburg

The conference will be preceded by a two-day Spring School, where introductory lectures on the themes of the conference will be given by Juergen Landes, Jeff Paris, Niki Pfeifer, Gregory Wheeler, Jon Williamson.

We invite submissions of two-page extended abstracts of talks for presentation at the workshop. These should be sent by email to by 1st November 2014.

There will also be a special issue of the Journal of Applied Logic devoted to the themes of this workshop. We invite submissions of papers to this volume.

A limited number of bursaries are available to postgraduate students attending the Spring School and the conference: these will cover 50% of accommodation and registration costs.

For further details please see the conference website

PhD Positions in Data Semantics

July 2, 2014

Funded PhD Student Openings at DaSe Lab:
Data Semantics, Semantic Web, Ontologies, Geo- and Earth Science applications

Data Semantics Laboratory, directed by Pascal Hitzler
Department of Computer Science and Engineering
Wright State University
Dayton, Ohio, USA

The Data Semantics (DaSe) Lab at the Department of Computer Science at Wright State University seeks two or more PhD students to pursue research in applied or foundational aspects of Data Semantics, Semantic Web, Ontologies, Geo- or Earth Sciences. Funding includes a monthly stipend plus tuition costs.

The DaSe Lab (directed by Pascal Hitzler, see for more information) is an internationally prominent research group with focus on foundations and applications of Semantic Web technologies. Lab members primarily contribute to ongoing research projects, but occasionally also get involved in teaching and administrative tasks. The new students will likely focus on research topics related to Data Science applications in the Earth Sciences.

Applicants should have excellent communication skills and excel in team work. Intellectual curiosity, a wide range of interests, and the ability and stamina to pursue challenging long-term goals is required. It is preferable, but not required, that applicants had previous exposure to lab research topics.

Applicants should send their application to It shall consist of a single pdf file containing a detailed curriculum vitae including grades, plus a cover letter in the email body which includes

* GPA of all degrees completed or under progress, with explanations how to convert the grading system, if degree is from outside the U.S.

* GRE score (both verbal and quantitative) or date when GRE score will be available

* Scores of most recent English language tests if non-native English speaker.

Applications which do not comply with these requirements may be ignored. Successful applicants must satisfy the formal requirements for pursuing a PhD degree in Computer Science at Wright State University, see

Processing of applications will begin immediately and commence until positions are filled. We expect to make first decisions in July 2014.

Please send applications and inquiries to

It will be posted at when positions are filled.

Why I Don’t Find Titelbaum’s Example Persuasive (2/2)

June 10, 2014

(Cross-posted from

In my previous post I presented some reasons to resist a clever counterexample to the Law of Likelihood developed by Mike Titelbaum. In that post I chose to stay at the level of intuitions about the example and about what kinds of features we might want a measure of evidential favoring to have. In this post I go deeper by examining Mike’s example in light of the purpose of the Law of Likelihood. Read the rest of this entry »

Why I Don’t Find Titelbaum’s Counterexample Persuasive (1/2)

June 3, 2014

(Cross-posted from

Last week’s post in which I presented a purported counterexample to the Law of Likelihood (due to Mike Titelbaum) generated a lot of interest. In this post I comment on the counterexample. Next week I plan to “go meta” by commenting on the purpose of the Law of Likelihood and of counterexamples such as Mike’s.

Read the rest of this entry »

Oxford Postdoc: Ethics of Big Data

June 2, 2014

Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Ethics of Big Data, Oxford Internet Institute
associated with a non-stipendiary Junior Research Fellowship at St Cross College
University of Oxford
Grade 7: £29,837 – £36,661 p.a.

We are a leading world centre for the multidisciplinary study of the Internet and society, looking for a full-time Researcher to work on a funded project, “The Ethics of Biomedical Big Data”, led by Professor Luciano Floridi.

The analysis of large datasets (Big Data) has become a major driver of innovation and success in biomedical research. However, the use of Biomedical Big Data raises serious ethical problems, which may threaten the huge opportunities it offers. This pilot project will formulate a blueprint of the ethical aspects, requirements and desiderata underpinning a European framework for the ethical use of Big Data in biomedical research.

Applicants should hold a PhD in a relevant discipline, have a strong interest in information/computer ethics and proven experience in ethical and policy analysis and writing papers based on qualitative and/or quantitative research. The successful candidate will work with Prof. Floridi (the PI of the project) and a multidisciplinary team of researchers, and will be able to take a lead in project management, conceptual analysis, and the dissemination of results.

Based at our OII North office at 34 St Giles, Oxford, this position is available from 1 October 2014 for 1 year, with a possibility of extension beyond that date, depending on funding.

The post is associated with a non-stipendiary Junior Research Fellowship at St Cross College for its duration. Details of the College and its facilities are available on the College website at:

Applications for this vacancy are to be made online.

To apply for this role and for further details, including a job description and selection criteria, please click on the link below:

The application deadline is 12.00 midday on Thursday 26 June 2014.

Interviews for those shortlisted are currently planned to take place in the week commencing 21 July 2014.

Best regards,

Luciano Floridi
_______________________________________________________   |

Professor of Philosophy and Ethics of Information
Director of Research

Oxford Internet Institute
University of Oxford

PA Mrs. Julia Farquet,

Twitter: @Floridi
Tel: +44 (0) 1865 287202
1 St Giles, Oxford, OX1 3JS, UK


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