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4-year PhD: the emergence and dynamics of social reasoning processes (EXPIRED)

Institute for Philosophy II, "Reasoning, Rationality and Science" Group, Ruhr University Bochum

Job category Graduate fellowship / Fixed term
AOS Agent-Based Modeling, Formal Methods, Epistemology, Social Epistemology, Philosophy of Science, Argumentation
AOS categories Epistemology
Decision Theory
Philosophy of Science
AOC some among: philosophy of science, epistemology, social epistemology, formal methods, agent-based models, programming, probabilistic and logical models of reasoning, argumentation,
AOC categories Epistemology
Decision Theory
Philosophy of Science
Workload Part time
Vacancies 1
Location Bochum, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
Start date November 15, 2022 (or as soon as possible)
Job description

The newly founded research group "Reasoning, Rationality and Science" (coordinated by Prof. Dunja Šešelja and Prof. Christian Straßer), at the Institute for Philosophy II at Ruhr University Bochum, Faculty for Philosophy and Educational Science, is offering a PhD position (4 years, 65%). We are looking for candidates (m/f/d) interested in researching the emergence and dynamics of social reasoning processes.

*** Research topic ***

Information flow, in particular in the digital age, is based on, and contributes to fragmented social landscapes which can lead to epistemically problematic belief formation processes. This raises the question which socio-epistemic mechanisms underlie such processes and what can be done to mitigate their harmful effects. In order to obtain a better understanding of such mechanisms, the PhD project may focus on some of the following issues:

- the emergence of epistemically pernicious phenomena such as echo chambers, epistemic bubbles, etc.
- the role of epistemic and non-epistemic reasons in social contexts
- the role of higher-order evidence in social opinion dynamics
- an epistemological assessment of interventions such as fact-checking
- the role and emergence of cognitive biases in social reasoning contexts
- the social emergence of nonmonotonic and argumentative aspects of reasoning
- etc.

We are especially interested in applicants who intend to employ formal methods, such as:
- agent-based models and simulations,
- Bayesian and similar quantitative models of reasoning,
- argumentation theory,
- formal logical methods,
- methods from artificial intelligence,
- etc.
*** The position ***
The selected candidate (m/f/d) will be supervised by Dunja Šešelja and Christian Straßer and enjoy a vibrant local research environment at RUB. The candidate is expected to actively contribute to seminars, workshops, reading groups, etc. A traveling budget covering expected costs will be provided. The candidate is expected to teach a course for philosophy students (in English or German) 2h/week, on a topic related to the research project.

The load of teaching will be calculated according to § 3 of Lehrverpflichtungsverordnung (state of North Rhine-Westphalia).

*** Your profile ***
You are required to hold a Master’s degree or equivalent degree in Philosophy, Computer Science, Mathematics, or a discipline related to the listed research themes. Other Master’s degrees than Philosophy will be considered if you have a demonstrable experience with the tackling of analytical/conceptual problems.

You should have an interest in (some of) the above listed research themes. Your research will be written and presented in English, so you need a very good command of English. Knowledge of German language is not required.

We welcome candidates (m/f/d) with a wide variety of backgrounds and perspectives and we especially encourage candidates (m/f/d) from underrepresented groups to apply. At the Ruhr University Bochum, we wish to promote careers of women in areas in which they are underrepresented, and we would therefore like to encourage female candidates to send us their applications. Applications by suitable candidates with severe disabilities and other applicants with equal legal status are likewise most welcome.

How to apply
Application type Email
Please send your application with the following documents (bundled in one PDF document): 1. a letter of motivation explaining your interest in the position and your qualifications for it; 2. applicants are welcome to, but do not have to submit a research project. 3. your curriculum vitae; 4. a writing sample (Master thesis, seminar paper or equivalent); 5. names and contact information of two persons willing to provide references; 6. optionally, you can submit a research statement, elaborating on your ideas for a research focus in line with (some of) the above themes. Applications must be sent by August 31, 2022, 23:59 CEST as a bundled PDF document to the following e-mail address: [email protected] Please indicate "Application for PhD position 2022 with call number 888" in the subject line. If you have any questions, please contact us at [email protected] and [email protected]
Email to apply
Hard deadline September 9, 2022, 11:59pm CET
Web address for more information https://jobs.ruhr-uni-bochum.de/jobposting/90c153e...
Contact name Dunja Šešelja and Christian Straßer
Contact email
Time created August 5, 2022, 9:22pm UTC
Scheduled expiry date September 9, 2022, 11:59pm CET
Expired on September 11, 2022, 12:46am CET
Last updated September 10, 2022, 10:46pm UTC
Last update notification
Due to the summer break, the deadline for applications has been extended to September 9, 2022.
August 30, 2022, 1:06pm UTC

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We are in Germany, where different requirements apply.