Appointment of Professor in Computer Vision and Machine Learning

Welcome

Thank you for your interest in the role of Professor in Computer Vision and Machine Learning.

In the last decade, City has almost tripled the proportion of its total academic staff producing world-leading or internationally excellent research. Led by President, Professor Sir Paul Curran, City has made significant investments in its academic staff, its estate and its infrastructure and continues to work towards realising its vision of being a leading global university:  it has recently agreed a new Vision & Strategy 2026.

The School of Mathematics, Computer Science & Engineering is a multi-disciplinary centre of research and education located in the heart of London’s vibrant design community. It is proud of its research advances and of educating thousands of undergraduates and postgraduates in STEM subjects.

The Department of Computer Science has been at the leading edge of computer science in the UK for six decades.  It awarded some of the country’s first Computer Science degrees and laid the groundwork for the foundation of the British Computer Society. Today, it is a vibrant, modern department comprising approximately 50 academic staff and 60 research staff and PhD students.

The School is seeking to appoint a Professor in Computer Vision and Machine Learning who will join the Research Centre for Adaptive Computing Systems and Machine Learning (ACS-ML) and collaborate closely with Tesco plc on research for the retail sector.  The appointed candidate will lead and foster excellent research; contribute to the delivery of high quality undergraduate and postgraduate education in core Computer Science; and play a lead role in developing the partnership with Tesco and strengthening expertise in Computer Vision for the retail sector.

The successful candidate will have a PhD in Computer Science or an area related to machine learning, artificial intelligence or computer vision; an internationally recognised reputation in such an area; a track record of world-leading or internationally excellent research; and experience of delivering high quality education in core Computer Science.  A track record of generating research income and of delivering consultancy or specialist services to external clients will also be required.

The role offers an excellent opportunity for the successful candidate to work with research centres across the School and with Tesco on the development of research in computer vision and machine learning, particularly computer vision for the retail sector.

About us

Founded in 1894, City, University of London is a global university committed to academic excellence with a focus on business and the professions and an enviable central London location. City attracts around 20,000 students (over 40% at postgraduate level) from more than 150 countries and staff from over 75 countries.

2016 was a significant milestone in City’s long and proud history and marked 50 years since it was granted a Royal Charter and City University London came into existence, with the objective to ‘advance knowledge, wisdom and understanding by teaching, research and professional training, particularly in science and technology’. 2016 was also the year that City joined the University of London, marking a significant and exciting new chapter in its history.  It is a  major opportunity but also a signal of how far City has come as an institution historically and, in more recent years, through implementing its Strategic Plan 2012 to 2016. City is committed to retaining its historic strengths, professional credibility and deep-rooted City of London heritage while strengthening its international profile and expanding its research and education capabilities in the ways set out in its Vision & Strategy 2026.

Of all its achievements, perhaps the most challenging has been to enhance its academic performance while moving into surplus after seven years in deficit. Significantly it has doubled the proportion of its academic staff undertaking world-leading or internationally excellent research and increased the satisfaction of its students by more than any other university in the country.

Vision & Strategy 2026

“City, University of London: A leading global university committed to academic excellence, focused on business and the professions and located in the heart of London.”

Vision & Strategy 2026 provides continuity with City’s Strategic Plan 2012 to 2016 and reaffirms City’s

  • Continuing commitment to academic excellence.
  • Focus on business and the professions.
  • Location in the heart of London.

Achieving the Vision is based on three strategic priorities:

Maintain quality trajectory (‘better’). Build on the quality focus of the Strategic Plan 2012 to 2016 and maintain City’s current upwards trajectory in research intensity, research quality, education quality and student experience more widely. Further improving quality will remain vital to City’s success and is what drives the people who work at City and attracts the students whose lives will be enhanced through their time here. City also plans to grow, with a firm guiding principle of ‘quality-constrained growth’, growing while maintaining or increasing quality.

Achieve growth (‘bigger’) in a way which maintains quality. Growth is important to achieve the critical mass necessary for both research excellence and educational experience and effectiveness. Critical mass can result in improved quality without significant increases in costs (through economies of scale). Over the next five years growth will come vertically for existing subjects that have momentum and horizontally, where City’s existing strengths can be leveraged through new and joint degrees or shared pathways and through improved student retention. Growth in student numbers will be accompanied by growth in research and enterprise income as City builds further on its internationalism and seeks a wider range of income sources.

Leverage partnerships within City, within London (including through the University of London) and internationally with the aim of making City far more connected.

These strategic priorities will guide City’s activity over the next five years and are made operational through the Education & Student Strategy, Research & Enterprise Strategy, Internationalisation Strategy, People Strategy, School Strategic Plans and Professional Service Strategic Plans.

Valuing and supporting students and staff to give of their best will be key to City’s success over the next decade. There are five guiding values underpinning Vision & Strategy 2026.

City is committed to being:

Ambitious – a place where people seek new challenges and go the extra mile to achieve the strategic priorities set out in Vision & Strategy 2026 through the implementation of their School or Professional Service Strategic Plan;

Collaborative – a place where successes are shared and problems are solved by working together for the common good;

A Community – a place where people have pride in their institution, are respectful, know and are concerned for each other;

Diverse & inclusive – a place where diversity is a strength and inclusiveness is promoted proactively, with an initial focus on gender equality as City’s most pressing challenge;

Organisationally self-confident – a place that knows its strengths and is open about and strives to address its weaknesses.

To read Vision & Strategy 2026 in full, please visit  https://www.city.ac.uk/about/governance/vision-strategy-2026/vision

Schools

City’s academic strength comes through its five Schools and its approach relies on continuing to deliver outstanding education and research through its School Strategic Plans. Its shared Vision is designed to enable each of City’s Schools to succeed.

The five Schools are

To find out more about City, please visit https://www.city.ac.uk/

School of Mathematics, Computer Science and Engineering

The School of Mathematics, Computer Sciences and Engineering is a multi-disciplinary centre of research and education located in the heart of London’s vibrant design community.  It offers a wide range of courses at bachelors and masters level within its six departments.  It is proud of its research advances and of educating thousands of undergraduates and postgraduates in STEM subjects. Research in the School is organised in a number of subject-specialised and interdisciplinary research centres and institutes. The School produced an excellent performance in the REF 2014 research exercise and prides itself on strong industrial links, the high level of employability of its graduates and the expertise and publications of its staff members.

The six Departments within the School are:

The Department of Computer Science has over 480 undergraduate students studying on several MSci and BSc programmes; and over 340 masters and 55 doctoral research students. The Department has a long tradition of excellence in education and continuously improves the content of its programmes.

The School’s research is structured around research centres. The successful candidate will join the Research Centre for Adaptive Computing Systems and Machine Learning in the Department of Computer Science, but would normally be expected to collaborate with other research centres in the Department and School. The Research Centre for Adaptive Computing Systems and Machine Learning addresses issues related to the engineering of adaptive computer systems including the fundamental control structures and algorithms for the adaptation of such systems. The research covers neural-symbolic computing, deep learning with symbolic reasoning, knowledge extraction from big data and explainable AI, and analysis of rich media information including video, audio, multimodal and spatiotemporal data analysis

The role

Professor in Computer Vision and Machine Learning

AQ1007

Post:  Professor in Computer Vision and Machine Learning
Department:  Computer Science
School:  School of Mathematics, Computer Science and Engineering
Grade:  Professor
Tenure:  Permanent and full-time
Responsible to:  Head of Department (Dr Ilir Gashi)

Job Purpose

The Professor in Computer Vision and Machine Learning will join the Research Centre for Adaptive Computing Systems and Machine Learning in the Department of Computer Science.  The post is a collaboration with Tesco.  The successful candidate will be expected to develop the research collaboration and grow a critical mass in computer vision and machine learning research and education for the retail sector.  The successful candidate would normally be expected to collaborate with other research centres in the Department and School and also to contribute actively to the Doctoral Training Centre in Artificial Intelligence, which is supported by Bosch, Connected Places Catapult and EIT Digital. They would be expected to co-supervise PhD students and also to contribute to international outreach activities of the research centre they join.

Main duties and responsibilities

Education

  • Contribute to support teaching in core Computer Science topics.
  • Prepare and deliver modules in Data Science, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence related areas.
  • Support and mentor undergraduate and taught postgraduate students through project supervision and personal tutorials.
  • Contribute to the planning, design and improvement of modules and/or courses.
  • Attract, and successfully supervise students at Doctoral level.

Research

  • Lead and develop research proposals, individually and/or collaboratively.
  • Contribute to the Doctoral Training Centre in Artificial Intelligence.
  • Lead and foster research activities, individually and/or collaboratively.
  • Contribute to the process of generating income/securing funds through applications for research grants and contracts and the commercialisation of ideas and products, through collaborations within research centres in the Department as well as across the School.
  • Regular high-quality journal paper publication.
  • Increase own profile nationally and internationally and enhance the reputation of the University.

Enterprise & Professional Practice

  • Secondment to Tesco for 25% of the time for the first three years of the appointment to help strengthen the computer vision for the retail sector area.
  • Develop new industrial partnership for research collaboration and MSc/UG student projects.
  • Contribute individually and collaboratively to the development of wider enterprise activity, including cross-University initiatives.

Service

  • Demonstrate academic leadership within the Department by undertaking administrative and management activities appropriate to the role level.
  • Contribute to leading initiatives in computer vision, data science, machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Additional information

All role holders are required to carry out their responsibilities with due regard to the University’s policies on:

  • Equality and Diversity;
  • Health and Safety;
  • Data Protection;
  • No Smoking; and
  • Sustainable Development.

The above list is not exclusive or exhaustive and the post holder will be required to undertake duties as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post. All members of staff are required to be professional, co-operative and flexible to the needs of the post, the School and the University.

PERSON SPECIFICATION

Qualifications and Knowledge

Essential

  • A first degree in a relevant subject/discipline and a postgraduate degree or appropriate and equivalent professional qualification.
  • A doctoral degree, normally a PhD in Computer Science or an area related to computer vision and/or machine learning/artificial intelligence.
  • An internationally recognised reputation in computer vision and/or machine learning/artificial intelligence.

Experience

Essential

  • Proven track record of successful research grant applications and funded research project delivery.
  • Successful consultancy activities or industrial collaboration or delivery of specialist services to external customers/clients.

Desirable

  • Extensive track-record of high quality published research in leading journals and at leading venues.
  • Development and delivery of high quality educational offerings at undergraduate, Masters and Doctoral levels, including, where appropriate, timely and successful PhD supervision.
  • Experience of providing high quality education in core Computer Science.

Skills and abilities

Essential 

  • Proven leadership in areas such as education, research, enterprise or professional practice.
  • Evidence of having made significant positive contributions to the functioning of a large organization and the well-being of its people

Terms of appointment

The salary and benefits package includes:

  • A competitive salary will be agreed with the preferred candidate within City’s salary scales for Professorial staff.
  • Annual Leave of 30 days, plus 8 statutory and 4 additional days during the Christmas holiday period.
  • Automatic entry into the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) with the option to opt out.
  • Season ticket loan.

How to apply

Anderson Quigley is acting as an employment advisor to the University. An executive search process is being carried out by Anderson Quigley in addition to the public advertisement.

Applications should consist of:

  • A full CV.
  • A covering letter (maximum of three pages) outlining how you meet the person specification.
  • Please include details of three referees, though please note that we will not approach your referees without your prior consent and only should you be shortlisted.
  • Please complete the following Equal Opportunity Monitoring Form.

Completed applications should be uploaded at www.andersonquigley.com/candidates  using the reference AQ1149.

The closing date for applications is noon on Thursday 20 May 2021.

Should you wish to discuss the role in strict confidence, please contact Imogen Wilde on +44(0)7864 652 633 or Elliott Rae on +44(0)7584 078 534.