Universiteit Leiden, Mathematical Institute

Position ID: MI-FP_AI [#21556, FP_AI]
Position Title: Full professor in Mathematics of Artificial Intelligence (0.8-1.0 fte)
Position Type: Tenured/Tenure-track faculty
Position Location: Leiden, Zuid-Holland 2333 CA, Netherlands [map] sort by distance
Subject Area: Artificial Intelligence
Starting Date: 2023/09/01
Application Deadline: 2023/03/06 11:59PMhelp popup finished (2022/11/17, finished 2023/09/09, listed until 2023/08/06)
Position Description:    

*** this position has been closed and new applications are no longer accepted. ***

The Faculty of Science and the Mathematical Institute are looking for a Full professor in Mathematics of Artificial Intelligence (0.8-1.0 fte)

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and related technologies are playing an increasingly important role in our society. To this end Leiden University has started a new, university wide initiative on Social Science, Humanities, Law, AI and Life Sciences (“SAILS”), in which multidisciplinary research across different faculties is conducted, with AI as a core technology. 

The Mathematical Institute of Leiden University is inviting applications for a full professorship to spearhead the institute’s contributions towards the SAILS program, focusing on the science behind AI. We are looking for talented individuals, with a strong track record in developing original lines of research and demonstrated leadership skills. Candidates from groups that are currently underrepresented in the field are explicitly invited to apply. 

The research of the chair will focus on the mathematics behind the development, application and/or analysis of systems displaying artificial intelligence. Typical examples of important research topics include:

  • Model- and data-driven deep learning
    o   Inverse problems
    o   Physics-informed learning
    o   Learning-informed dynamical systems

  • Mathematical foundations of (deep) learning
    o   Invariances in learning
    o   Stochastic gradient descent and sampling
    o   Generalizability and expressivity
    o   Manifolds in learning
    o   Dynamics of learning
    o   Constructing counterexamples
  • Imposing constraints on learning
    o   Privacy preservation
    o   Fairness
    o   Explainability / interpretability
    o   Federated learning
  • Probabilistic and causal AI, logical AI systems
    o   Bayesian networks
    o   Causal networks
    o   AI for mathematical theorem discovery

However, we are open to the introduction of other topics and themes as well.

Key responsibilities
As the holder of this position, you will:

  • Continue to perform original research surrounding the development, application and/or analysis of systems displaying artificial intelligence, with a clear mathematical component.
  • Acquire research grants to support these research lines.
  • Take a leading role within the university-wide SAILS program. This includes strengthening the ties of the institute with its natural partners throughout the university.
  • Pursue collaborations both inside and outside the academic environment.
  • Be an active and inspiring advisor for bachelor and master students and PhD candidates.
  • Play a leading role in our teaching program, which includes developing the curriculum.
  • Contribute to the administrative responsibilities of the institute.

Selection criteria
As we assess your application, we will be looking for:
  • A proven track record of excellence in research at the intersection of mathematics and artificial intelligence.
  • Demonstrated experience in the establishment of (international) research programs and the coordination of scientific research.
  • Affinity with interdisciplinary research.
  • An established ability to attract prestigious national and international personal grants.
  • Strong communicative, collaborative and leadership skills.
  • A strong track record as an inspiring teacher and supervisor.
Additional Requirements to fulfill after hiring
  • Leiden University requires teaching staff to obtain the University Teaching Qualification (UTQ). If you do not already possess this qualification or its equivalent, you must be willing to obtain this qualification within a period of two years;
  • Newly hired staff not already holding a Dutch language proficiency diploma at level B2 or better, are required to obtain such a diploma within two years.
Employment conditions
The intended starting date for the position is September 1st 2023, but this is flexible. You will be appointed in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. The gross monthly salary is between 6,099.- and 10,721.- depending on your qualifications and experience. When appropriate, offers can be made directly on the basis of a permanent contract.

offers an attractive benefits package including pension build-up, paid parental leave and additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3%). Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. For international spouses we have set up a dual career programme. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break. For more information, see the website

Diversity and inclusion
Fostering an inclusive community is a central element of the values and vision of Leiden University. Leiden University is committed to becoming an inclusive community which enables all students and staff to feel valued and respected and to develop their full potential. Diversity in experiences and perspectives enriches our teaching and strengthens our research. High quality teaching and research is inclusive. 

Leiden University
Leiden University is one of Europe’s leading international research universities. Thanks to its committed and inspired employees, the university enjoys a leading role in academic research and education. Leiden also scores very well every year in prominent rankings. This means that, to maintain our position, the bar is set very high. Regardless of the work you do at our university, you are always encouraged to broaden your horizons, develop your talents and reach your full potential.

SAILS program
SAILS (Society Artificial Intelligence and Life Sciences) is a university wide initiative aiming to facilitate collaboration across disciplines on the use of AI. By building on and expanding the existing expertise of AI at Leiden University, this project intends to advance science and improve the quality of daily life. It is one of Leiden University's interdisciplinary programmes. The following disciplines are involved: Archaeology, Humanities, Social & Behavioural Sciences, Law, Public Administration, Sciences, and the Leiden University Medical Centre (LUMC).

Faculty of Science
The Faculty of Science at Leiden University is a world-class faculty where staff and students work together in a dynamic international environment. It is a faculty where personal and academic development are top priorities. Our people are committed to expand fundamental knowledge by curiosity and to look beyond the borders of their own discipline; their aim is to benefit science, and to make a contribution to addressing the major societal challenges of the future.

The research carried out at the Faculty of Science is very diverse, ranging from mathematics, information science, astronomy, physics, chemistry and bio-pharmaceutical sciences to biology and environmental sciences. The research activities are organized in eight institutes. These institutes offer eight bachelors’ and twelve master’s programmes. The faculty has grown strongly in recent years and now has more than 2,500 staff and over 6,000 students. We are located at the heart of Leiden’s Bio Science Park, one of Europe’s biggest science parks, where university and business life come together.

Mathematical Institute
The Mathematical Institute (MI) is one of the eight institutes within the Faculty of Science and has a strong international orientation. Its mission is to push the frontiers of scientific knowledge by developing and applying high quality mathematics, while offering a wide range of mathematical training in a friendly but challenging environment.

We believe that mathematics is an essential part of human knowledge and our staff members take pride in their role as keepers of this rich field of science. They are dedicated to push the boundaries of mathematical knowledge and to contribute their experience towards solving problems faced in other sciences, society and industry. In addition, many of our staff members work hard to promote mathematical literacy in society at large through a multitude of outreach activities.

Contact and further information
For further information about this position or the recruitment process, please contact Hermen Jan Hupkes (hhupkes@math.leidenuniv.nl). You can find more information about the Faculty of Science here. For more information about working at Leiden University please visit the website.   

Please submit your application through mathjobs; all applications received on March 6th 2023 at the latest are guaranteed full consideration.

To be considered complete, please make sure your application contains the following items:

  • cover letter
  • curriculum vitae
  • brief research plan
  • list of publications
  • teaching statement
  • contact information for three reference letter writers.

Application Materials Required:
Submit the following items online at this website to complete your application:
And anything else requested in the position description.

Further Info:
email address
Leiden University
Mathematical Institute
attn: HR Office, room 203b
Niels Bohrweg 1
2333 CA Leiden