Research Fellow – HigherEdJobs


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JOB OPENING ID: 193052

REGULAR/TEMPORARY: Regular

ORGANIZATIONAL GROUP: College Engineering

DEPARTMENT: Transportation Research Inst.

How to Apply

To apply, please submit a cover letter, CV, names and contact information of three people who would be willing to provide a letter of recommendation. The cover letter should contain a statement of research interests, address your specific interest in the position, and outline skills and experience that directly relate to this position. Applications without the required information will not be considered.

UMTRI, the College of Engineering, and the University recognize and value contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion (diversity.umich.edu). Your cover letter should also include information describing how you would work to support DEI at UMTRI. 

Please submit all materials as a single document in response to this posting through the University of Michigan jobs portal. 

Note: The Research Fellow position is for a one-year, renewable appointment dependent upon performance and funding. 

Job Summary

The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI) is recognized internationally for our multidisciplinary research focusing on transportation safety and mobility (http://umtri.umich.edu). We maintain the highest standards of excellence as we conduct research that improves peoples’ lives through access to safe and equitable mobility. UMTRI is a non-degree-granting unit within the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan that includes 20 faculty members, 65 research staff, and over 100 student researchers. During the last fiscal year, UMTRI generated $19M in research expenditures with funding from a wide range of government agencies and industry partners. 

UMTRI is seeking 1-2 outstanding Postdoctoral Research Fellow(s) for a one year, potentially renewable appointment within the Center for the Management of Information for Safe and Sustainable Transportation (CMISST), Engineering Systems (ESG), Biosciences, and/or Human Factors groups. The position(s) offers the opportunity to contribute to a highly regarded research program and enhance skills necessary for a successful academic/research career. 

The Center for the Management of Information for Safe and Sustainable Transportation (CMISST) develops new techniques to combine and statistically analyze disparate datasets to reveal new information. Results of CMISST researchers analyses can allow us to better understand the factors that impact transportation safety and mobility, and identify the most effective crash and injury countermeasures.

The Engineering Systems Group (ESG) leads research in the areas of connected and automated vehicles, driver assistance systems, traffic control and modeling, cybersecurity of vehicles and infrastructure, vehicle-road interaction, road roughness profiling, and heavy vehicle suspensions and dynamics. Research within ESG includes modeling and simulation, analysis, and experimental work in the lab and the field, including very large naturalistic driving and observational studies. The successful candidate would first assist with, and then help lead, substantial and visible research projects in a fast-paced team environment.

The Biosciences Group conducts research on the biomechanics of motor vehicle occupants as it relates to occupant injuries, crash protection, and occupant accommodation. Research conducted by the Biosciences Group involves computational human modeling, injury biomechanics applications, vehicle safety design optimization, motion sickness in automated vehicles, driver state monitoring for advanced driver assistance systems, markerless motion capture and 3D human pose estimation from 2D and 3D data and vehicle occupant and pedestrian behavior prediction. 

The Human Factors Group studies the interactions of the driver, the vehicle, and the environment. The underlying rationale for research in this division is that well-designed vehicles and driving environments make the driving task safer, easier, more efficient, and more enjoyable. Research conducted by the Human Factors group ranges from basic to translational in purpose, individual to policy in focus, experimental to simulation in design, utilizing a breadth of research methods, including surveys, qualitative and quantitative data collection, driving simulation and instrumented vehicles using state-of-the-art technologies. 

Consideration for placement of applicants will be given to those whose training, skills and research interests match and complement the research interests of Research Scientists and faculty in the CMISST, Engineering Systems, Biosciences and Human Factors Group(s) at UMTRI. 

Responsibilities*

The Postdoctoral Research Fellow(s) will conduct research in close collaboration with Research Scientists and faculty in UMTRI. Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following: 

  • Conduct original and collaborative research 
  • Develop and apply analytical and experimental methods for assessing connected/automated vehicle functions 
  • Work on prototype system development in a team environment 
  • Consider functional safety approaches in combination with simulation and testing
  • Use existing resources such as naturalistic driving archives to support the research 
  • Author and co-author peer-reviewed publications 
  • Participate and present in seminars, work groups and presentations at professional meetings 
  • Collaborate in ongoing research and new research proposals with faculty 
  • Help supervise and train undergraduate and graduate students

Required Qualifications*

  • A Ph.D in mechanical, industrial, transportation or biomedical engineering, computer science, physics, mathematics, statistics, psychology, human factors or other related field 
  • Demonstrated record of individual initiative and originality in research 
  • Excellent quantitative and analytical skills 
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills 
  • Demonstrated ability to publish in peer-reviewed forums 
  • Experience collaborating in a research environment 

Candidates must be eligible to work in the United States. 

Desired Qualifications*

  • Experience with automotive applications, naturalistic driving studies, vehicle instrumentation 
  • Strong foundation in analyzing and applying acceleration, kinematic, and physiological data for engineering applications and robust scientific computing and stats skills, including. C, C#, Mathematica, MatLab, R, Python 
  • Finite-element modeling for crash simulations, including experience with LS-DYNA
  • Data analysis methods, including machine-learning, optimization, and other statistical methods 

Additional Information

Michigan Engineering’s vision is to be a world-wide preeminent college of engineering serving the common good. This global outlook, leadership focus, and service commitment permeate our culture. Our vision is supported by a mission and values that, together, provide the framework for all that we do. Information about our vision, mission and values can be found at: http://strategicvision.engin.umich.edu/

The University of Michigan is a non-discriminatory, affirmative action employer. 

Ann Arbor is a small, friendly town with big-city sophistication. Ann Arbor offers an exceptionally high quality of life, combining the safety and intimacy of a smaller city with an abundance of diverse cultural opportunities exceeding those of much larger cities. Ann Arbor ranks in polls as one of the best places in the United States to live and raise a family (http://umtri.umich.edu/candidate-resources).

Background Screening

The University of Michigan conducts background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer and may use a third party administrator to conduct background checks.  Background checks are performed in compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

Application Deadline

Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days.  The review and selection process may begin as early as the eighth day after posting. This opening may be removed from posting boards and filled anytime after the minimum posting period has ended.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.


The University of Michigan is a non-discriminatory/affirmative action employer.

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