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Postdoc Cities, Machine Learning and Network Science
  • Python
  • Machine Learning
  • Scala
TU Delft
150 days ago

Postdoc Cities, Machine Learning and Network Science

Job description

Cities are shaped by their ability to provide citizens with opportunities for prosperity. New modes of shared, on-demand and real-time transit services have improved serving citizens' business, industrial, social, cultural, educational and recreational needs. They welcome innovation necessary for sustaining growing populations. But improved connectivity also threatens to create larger, more sprawling urban areas with rippling consequences for socioeconomic inequalities, changes in land-use and climate, congestion, pollution and much more.

The Computational Urban Science & Policy (CUSP) lab is searching for a Postdoctoral researcher to advance the understanding of urbanisation and its relationship with inequalities in access to opportunities and resources. This position is in partnership with the TPM AI lab and The Municipality of The Hague. It requires the use of urban data, complexity science and machine learning. You will have the opportunity to interact with an extensive network of researchers at the faculty and in The Netherlands. You will be tasked with identifying the relevant sources of data across multiple facets of an urban system (modes of mobility, land-use, infrastructure, demographics) to spatially study the distribution of inequalities in access to diverse opportunities and services in The Hague. You will develop methods to:

  • Model and measure access (who benefits?) by combining insights from dynamic network models of human mobility with the distribution of urban form, opportunities and resources.
  • Design an equity framework that can be utilised by cities worldwide to monitor and address challenges in the unequal distribution of opportunities in cities. The structure should be scalable for both developed and developing nations.

During the Postdoc, you will conduct research and prepare scientific articles presenting the research. Depending on your own goals and interests, you can take a flexible approach in tackling the challenges of inequalities in cities. Specific tasks will be discussed and defined in further discussions with the successful candidate keeping in mind their ambitions in research in urban science and policy. You may gain experience in supervising PhD and MSc students in both labs as well as engage in teaching if you want to. You will be mentored by Dr Trivik Verma (Assistant Professor, leading the CUSP lab).

The CUSP lab focusses on understanding the fundamental processes that drive, shape and sustain cities. In our group, we leverage large-scale datasets borne of the digital age and networked societies to develop computational frameworks for advancing a transdisciplinary urban science.

The position will offer the following advantages to the selected candidate:

  • You will be part of the CUSP lab with a diverse group of students and researchers working on advancing urban data science to address the challenges of urbanisation.
  • You will be affiliated with the TPM AI Lab, a newly established AI lab of the faculty that serves a community of AI researchers in establishing internal and external collaborations.
  • You will get an opportunity to interact with project partners at the TPM AI Lab (extensive network of academic and industrial partners) and the Municipality of The Hague (offering a policy and planning perspective on cities).
  • Opportunities for developing your career through support for conferences, collaborations, training possibilities, and mentoring.


We are looking for applicants who associate with the following characteristics:

  • A PhD in quantitative social science, computational science (network science, computer science, machine learning / AI, statistics), or a related field in Geography, Transportation or Urban Planning.
  • Ability to work both independently and in teams and an interest in taking ownership of projects and seeing them to completion (including publications).
  • An ambition to develop a career in academia by conducting high-quality research in reproducible ways at the intersection of cities, complex networks and data science.
  • Persuasive writing, presenting and communication skills in English.
  • Experience in working with large geo-referenced datasets.
  • Experience in collecting, analysing and processing data in programmatic ways (e.g., using Python, R or any other functional programming language).
  • A strong willingness to learn and apply new quantitative and qualitative techniques to data from multiple disciplines (an interest in transdisciplinary research)
  • An affinity for networking, project acquisition and valorisation and an entrepreneurial mindset to ensure the impact and sustainability of your work.

Conditions of employment

You will be offered full-time employment (38 hours per week) for two years. Starting date is negotiable, but preferably by October 1, 2020. In the current world situation, delays in getting a visa to move physically are all understandable and will be taken into account.

Salary and benefits are following the Collective Labor Agreement for Dutch Universities. The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. For international applicants, we offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist you with your relocation. An International Children's Centre provides childcare, and there is an international primary school.

TU Delft (Delft University of Technology)

Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context. At TU Delft we embrace diversity and aim to be as inclusive as possible (see our Code of Conduct). Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale.

Challenge. Change. Impact!

Faculty Technology, Policy and Management

The Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management (TPM) makes an important contribution to solving the complex technical and social challenges that we face as a society. Challenges such as energy, climate, mobility, IT, water and cyber security. This requires a multidisciplinary approach that goes beyond technology. Our education and research are therefore at the intersection of technology, society and management. We combine insights from the engineering sciences with those from the humanities and social sciences. We develop robust models and designs, are internationally oriented, and have extensive networks in science and practice.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management.

The position is embedded in the Policy Analysis Section at the Multi-Actor Systems Department (MAS). Research at MAS seeks to improve the understanding of complex multi-actor systems, and our ability to transform them for the betterment of human condition. We do this by developing, testing and applying theories, methods and tools that are rooted in (system) engineering disciplines as well as in the social and behavioural sciences. There will be opportunities to interact with colleagues to work on other exciting projects in the domain of water, resilience, energy transformation, simulation and uncertainty modelling.

Additional information

For information about this vacancy, you can contact Trivik Verma, Assistant Professor, email:

For information about the selection procedure, please contact Olivie Beek, HR Advisor, email:

Application procedure

Submit a letter indicating your research interests and experience, a short CV, names and email addresses of 2-3 references, and copies of two publications you enjoyed writing, via email to We encourage applicants also to include links to any open-source software they have developed.

Applications from women, minorities and individuals with disabilities are especially encouraged.

A pre-employment screening can be part of the application procedure.


Faculty of Technology, Policy & Management


Postdoc Positions


Behaviour and Society




€ 2.790,00 - € 4.402,00





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