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Postdoctoral Researchers in AI

Would you like to work with world-leading scientists on the development of Artificial Intelligence methods and their applications in the life sciences, join one of the fastest growing universities in the world, and have access to world class resources to boost your academic career and prepare for a research career or faculty position?

We are looking for brilliant scientists to join us in the Bio-Ontology Research Group (BORG) at the Computational Bioscience Research Center (CBRC) at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) in Saudi Arabia. The BORG, headed by Professor Robert Hoehndorf, is renowned for pioneering several methods that combine deep learning and symbolic AI (formal logics, knowledge representation, ontologies) in biology and medicine, and is developing some of the world’s leading systems for protein function prediction, finding gene-disease association, and identifying causative variants in genomic sequences.  

Get to know us:

Whom are we looking for exactly?
We are looking for researchers who have completed their Ph.D. in the past four years (due to the eligibility requirements set by KAUST), or will complete their Ph.D. in the next six months, and who have an ambition to advance their academic career through world class research on Artificial Intelligence and its applications in the life sciences. Successful candidates will have experience, demonstrated by publications in leading conferences or journals, in knowledge representation and reasoning, Semantic Web technologies, machine learning on structured data, or the application of artificial intelligence to challenging problems in biology or biomedicine. Also, candidates will be able to develop and implement AI systems that can utilize very large datasets such as those available in life sciences.

What are the requirements for the positions?

  • A Ph.D. degree (in Computer Science or related), completed in the last 4 years (due to the eligibility requirements set by KAUST).
  • Proficiency in spoken and written English.
  • Experience, demonstrated by a publication record, in one of the following areas:
    • Machine Learning, Data Mining, Statistics, Data Science
    • Semantic Technologies and Ontologies, Knowledge Representation, Formal Logic
    • Development of novel methods in Bioinformatics or Biomedical data analytics

What can we offer that others cannot?

  • Access to world-class computer infrastructure, including the Shaheen 2 Cray XC40 supercomputer (top 20 in the world) and dedicated machine learning systems.
  • Exciting research topics frequently published in top-ranked journals and conferences in bioinformatics and computer science
  • Access to unique samples and datasets that enable us to address some of the most challenging problems in biology and medicine.
  • The opportunity to be a part, and an architect, of the AI revolution happening in the Middle East, with significant support for technology transfer and industrial applications.
  • An international, highly diverse university campus and housing by the Red Sea, with activities ranging from relaxing at the beach to golfing.
  • A competitive salary (commensurate with the applicant's qualifications), free, fully-furnished housing on the KAUST campus (with less than 10 minutes travel time to and from work), free medical and life insurance, and free education at KAUST School for the postdoctoral researcher’s children. 

KAUST will be responsible for the actual recruiting decision, appointment offers and employment benefits.

To apply, please send a brief letter of motivation, CV, and names and contact details of two references to Hanouf Al Hattan (, using "Application to BORG Postdoctoral Position" as subject of your email.

Ph.D. studentship in Data Science and Biomedical Applications

An opening for a Ph.D. or M.S./Ph.D. student position is available in the group of Robert Hoehndorf at the King Abdullah University of Science
and Technology, Thuwal, Saudi Arabia.
Start date: August 2018
Application deadline: Early 2018

Project description:
The student will work on combining methods from Symbolic Artificial Intelligence (formal logics, rule-based systems) with machine learning and statistical approaches to data mining, and apply these methods to biomedical datasets. Major application areas include understanding molecular mechanisms underlying traits, phenotypes, and disease, and identifying ways to perturb biological systems through bioactive compounds (drugs).
The student will join a productive research team at one of the fastest-growing research universities, located in Thuwal, KSA, by the Red Sea.
Expertise required:
- MSc degree (of BSc degree for MSc+PhD applicants) in Computer Science, Mathematics, or Statistics.
- Programming and software engineering experience.
- Proficiency in spoken and written English.
- Experience in one of the following areas:
  - machine learning or optimization
  - Big Data
  - applied statistics and statistical modelling
  - Semantic Technologies, knowledge representation, formal logics
Students are entitled to a competitive stipend, free, fully-furnished housing on the KAUST campus, medical and life insurance, and international education at KAUST schools for dependent children. KAUST will be responsible for the actual admission offer, stipend and benefits​.

How to apply:
Full application must be submitted through the application website here.
Before applying, please send your CV and a brief letter of motivation by email to