Application Form
PhD Studentship in Perspective taking in multiparty human-machine dialogue [PhD_PHMD_BC]

JobRef: 15578
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PhD Studentship in Perspective taking in multiparty human-machine dialogue [PhD_PHMD_BC]

POSTED:March 28, 2022
LOCATION:University College Dublin
CLOSES:May 18, 2022
Duration:4 Years
Reports to:Dr Benjamin Cowan
Salary:€18,500 per annum stipend
Closing Date:May 18, 2022

Location: School of Information & Communication Studies, University College Dublin

Anticipated Start Date: 01 Sept 2022


  • Contribute to the ADAPT research agenda that pioneers and combines research in AI driven technologies: Natural Language Processing, Video/Text/Image/Speech processing, digital engagement & HCI, semantic modeling, personalisation, privacy & data governance.
  • Work with our interdisciplinary team of leading experts from the complementary fields of, Social Sciences,  Communications, Commerce/Fintech, Ethics, Law,  Health, Environment and Sustainability.
  • Leverage our success. ADAPT’s researchers have signed 43 collaborative research projects, 52 licence agreements and oversee 16 active commercialisation funds and 52 commercialisation awards.  ADAPT has won 40 competitive EU research projects and obtained €18.5 million in non-exchequer non-commercial funding. Additionally, six spinout companies have been formed. ADAPT’s researchers have produced over 1,500 journal and conference publications and nearly 100 PhD students have been trained.

As an ADAPT funded PhD researcher you will have access to a network of 85 global experts and over 250 staff as well as a wide multi-disciplinary ecosystem across 8 leading Irish universities. We can influence and inform your work, share our networks and collaborate with you to increase your impact, and accelerate your career opportunities. Specifically we offer:

  1. Opportunity to build your profile at international conferences and global events.
  2. A solid career pathway through formalised training & development, expert one-on-one supervision and exposure to top specialists.
  3. A Fully funded, 4 year PhD postgraduate studentship which includes  a stipend of (€18,500 per annum – non taxed), along with equipment, annual travel funding
  4. Funding for annual student fees



Work on human-machine dialogue suggests that people take their partner’s perspective into account when interacting with speech based automated dialogue partners. Perspective taking more generally is seen as critical to successful communication. Through smartspeakers, speech agents have become devices that hold conversations with multiple users in interaction. This move from dyadic to multiparty dialogue is likely to be accelerated as agents take a more proactive approach to engaging users in dialogue, becoming member of a team rather than the sole target of the interaction. This PhD aims to identify how perspective taking mechanisms manifest in contexts where speech agents are part of a multiparty dialogue, and how this influences user language choices.  After completing this PhD candidates will have developed high quality quantitative/statistical analysis and experimental design skills as well as a deep understanding of the fundamental mechanisms within human machine dialogue. Such knowledge would allow students to follow either industry or academic related pathways post PhD.

Minimum qualifications

2:1 or above in Psychology/Linguistics/Human-Computer Interaction/Computer Science/Cognitive Science or related Masters degree

Preferred qualifications

A knowledge of online experiment design software/programming (e.g.JSPsych/Python/Javascript) and statistical analysis software (e.g. R)

Application Process

Each application should only consist of

  1. Detailed curriculum vitae, including – if applicable – relevant publications;
  2. Transcripts of degrees,
  3. The name and email contacts of two academic referees,
  4. A cover letter/letter of introduction (max 2000 words). In the letter, applicants should include the following details:
    1. An explanation of your interest in the research to be conducted and why you believe they are suitable for the position.
    2. Details of your final year undergraduate project (if applicable)
    3. Details of your MSc project (if applicable)
    4. Details of any relevant modules previously taken, at undergraduate and/or Master level.
    5. Details of any relevant work experience (if applicable).



ADAPT is committed to achieving better diversity and gender representation at all levels of the organisation, across leadership, academic, operations, research staff and studentship levels. ADAPT is committed to the continued development of employment policies, procedures and practices that promote gender equality. On that basis we encourage and welcome talented people from all backgrounds to join ADAPT.

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