Research Fellows – Causes Of Psychiatric Disorders And Causes Of Individual Differences In Cognitive Development

Applications are invited for two Research Fellows in the Max Planck UCL Centre for Computational Psychiatry and Ageing Research, under the supervision of Professor Ray Dolan, Dr Quentin Huys and Dr Steve Fleming. The Centre is dedicated to studying the causes of psychiatric disorders as well as the causes of individual differences in cognitive development. Computational models of differences and changes in brain-behaviour relations are the Centre’s major theoretical tool. The Centre’s findings will provide information on how cognitive functioning can be maintained into old age and on how psychiatric disorders can be better recognized and treated more efficiently.

The post holders will undertake high quality research and produce high-impact publications as part of a new initiative, involving the Max Planck UCL Centre for Computational Psychiatry and Koa Health. Furthermore, the appointees will be directly involved in tech-transfer of the research results achieving an immediate real-world impact and improving mental health of the general population. The main duties involve developing smartphone-based tasks that measure the impact of either interventions for mental illness or smartphone-based therapeutic interventions and developing computational models thereof.

The posts are available from April 2021 and are funded by a grant from Koa Health for two years in the first instance or to March 2023, whichever is the shorter.

This is an ongoing recruitment campaign, and we will draw down applications once per month to assess and interview. If you are interested in a role, we encourage you to apply early, and when posts have been filled, we will close the advertisement.


Key Requirements

The successful candidates must have a PhD or equivalent in neuroscience, psychology, or a quantitative field (e.g., computer science, engineering, physics). Applicants should have expertise in using computational approaches in the study of human reinforcement learning and decision making or expertise with machine learning techniques. Experience of theoretical and computational neuroscience in relation to learning and decision making and expertise in programming (eg, in Python, Matlab) is essential.

Demonstrated ability to complete projects, as evidenced by first-author publications, excellent organisational, interpersonal, and communication skills, plus a high level of consideration and care for patients and research subjects are also required. Clinical experience and experience with online or smartphone data acquisition is desirable.

Please note: appointment at Grade 7 is dependent upon having been awarded a PhD; if this is not the case, initial appointment will be at research assistant Grade 6B (salary £31,542 – £33,257 per annum) with payment at Grade 7 being backdated to the date of final submission of the PhD thesis.


Further Details

A job description and person specification can be accessed at the bottom of this page.

To apply for the vacancy please click on the ‘Apply Now’ button below.

It would be helpful if applicants could provide a telephone number that they can be contacted on during office hours. Applicants may contact Professor Ray Dolan directly (email: for further information.

If you have any queries regarding the application process, please contact Oksana Shapoval, HR Officer, UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology, 23 Queen Square, London, WC1N 3BG (email:

Please click here to apply:

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