Research Associate in Human Robot Interaction (HRI)

Deadline for Applications is 15th March 2024.

Salary: £31,396 to £33,965, pro rata (Grade 6)

Contract: The position duration is approx. 12 months (with 3-5 month extension possible) commencing in April 1st 2024, the position is part-time (.30).

Applying here: follow this link

Detailed Description

The part-time RA will join the National Robotarium a world-leading centre for Robotics and Artificial Intelligence at Heriot-Watt University’s Edinburgh campus. A partnership between Heriot-Watt University and the University of Edinburgh, the multi-million pound facility is home to pioneering research and innovation labs across three core areas: Robotics & Autonomous Systems (RAS), Human Robot Interaction (HRI) and High Precision Manufacturing. Its uniquely flexible facilities allows industry partners in healthcare, agriculture, construction and other economic sectors to collaborate with experts in Robotics and AI, utilising the latest science to develop technologies and carry out challenge-based innovations that can move rapidly from laboratory to market.

The part time Research Associate will join the Interactive and Trustworthy Technologies ( research group at the National Robotarium and will mainly focus their work on the EPSRC project titled “FEATHER”. They will be required to work in person at the Heriot-Watt University Campus.

Aim of the Feather Project

Is to work with stakeholders to co-design new tools and machine learning-based methods for early recognition of urinary tract infections to enable longer and healthier independent living.

This position will focus on

Supporting the development, testing and evaluation of the interactive robotic agent. The interactive robotic agent will focus on facilitating regular multimodal interaction with a social robot to facilitate the recognition of a UTI, which otherwise cannot be extracted by other means.


The Research Associate will work for Prof Lynne Baillie an expert in Human Robot Interaction.

Duties & Responsibilities

In general, to support the project leader at HWU of the Feather project and her senior research associates in achieving the goals of that project, under her direction.

• Undertaking a specific role in the research project under supervision

• Taking responsibility for some elements of the planned research

• Planning and carrying out a work programme appropriate to the research activity

• Contributing to the writing of research papers

• Contributing to dissemination and publication of research teams findings as appropriate.

• Contribute to learning and teaching through activities such as project supervision, tutoring and marking (limited to no more than 10% on an annualised basis).

Please note that this job description is not exhaustive, and the role holder may be required to undertake other relevant duties commensurate with the grading of the post. Activities may be subject to amendment over time as the role develops and/or priorities and requirements evolve.

Person Specification



• A PhD or Masters degree in Human Robot Interaction or closely related subject e.g. Computer Science or Engineering.

Key technical skills (candidates will ideally display several of the following attributes):

• Experience of one of the following: software engineering and software testing

• Very good programming skills in some of the following: Android programming (i.e., Android Studio programming in Java or Kotlin), Python, C# or C++, functional programming

• Backend programming skills (e.g., Microsoft Azure)

• Experience with ROS within a research context.

• Skills in some of the following: co-design and development, user centred experiments and evaluation

• Strong analytical and problem solving skills.

• Strong communication skills (verbal, written and presentation).

• Reasonable statistical skills


• Ability to travel Internationally for dissemination of findings and networking. Desirable

• Industry experience on projects.

• A developing track record of publishing research findings.

• Good team player with good interpersonal skills.

• Tenacity and confidence in engaging stakeholders in collaborative design and data collection.

• Highly motivated to initiate, plan and pursue research and aspire to excellence in all professional activities.

• Adaptability, willingness to learn new fields and develop new skill sets.


Applying here: follow this link

  1. A letter of interest describing your relevant background and skills for the project, and why you are interested in this project.
  2. A current curriculum vitae that includes dates and details of your educational background (degrees, subject, classification, degree transcripts), technical programming skills, publications, work experience and other relevant information.
  3. The name and contact information of two referees (one of which must be your current line manager or Hons/Masters supervisor), these will only be solicited by the University for shortlisted candidates.

For further information or informal enquiries regarding this position please email Professor Lynne Baillie (