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Seeking a Research Scientist (W20119)


Behavior Learning Research Team
Robotics project
RIKEN Baton Zone Program
Cluster for Science, Technology and Innovation Hub
(Team Leader: Yutaka Nakamura)

Research field

RIKEN launched a robotics project in April 2019, aiming at a future society where humans and AI / robots coexist flexibly. This project is promoting R & D for the social implementation of next-generation robotics ("brain x AI") that synergistically incorporates the strengths of AI research into brain science and cognitive science. Behavior Learning Research Team aims to realize robots that operate in the environment in which humans live, and conducts research on the mechanism for robot to learn appropriate behavior by observing human behavior and interacting with humans.

Note: Names of organization and laboratory are subject to change.

Job title and job descriptions

Job title, available positions

Research Scientist 2 positions

Job description

We are seeking 2 positions as below:

  • a)Research on robots operating in the environment in which humans live. These robots should have the ability to interact with humans or surroundings safely since physical contact is not evitable in the real environment. To cope with such difficulties, the research includes the development of a flexible mechanism, such as a morphological computation-based mechanism.
  • b)Research on the behavior modeling for communication robots. Nonverbal communication, such as gesture, is an important skill of humans to realize rich communication but no existing robot has such ability due to the diversity of the behavior during the communication. The research includes the development of the framework of a robot to learn its own behavior by observing human behavior and interacting with humans.


PhD holder in fields indicated under [Job description].

For position a):

  • Skill for designing and building prototype robots using CAD.
  • Research results on a robot designed based on the morphological computation.

For position b):

  • Knowledge on machine learning, implementation skill of deep learning methods.
  • Research results on a control of an actual robot (not simulation) using a machine learning technique.

Work location

Branch and address

RIKEN Keihanna Campus (In Keihanna Science City, 2-2-2 Hikaridai, Souraku-gun Seika-cho, Kyoto 619-0288, Japan, Advanced Telecommunications Research Institute International (ATR))

Salary and benefits

  • 1.A one-year fixed-term employment contract, renewable based on evaluation, to a maximum of the end of the fiscal year 2024 (March 31, 2025).
  • 2.RIKEN may adjust the above maximum period of renewability based on a) the employee’s abilities, work load at the time of contract completion, performance and work attitude and b) the continuation of the employee’s center, laboratory or project and RIKEN’s management situation and budget at the time. In principle, employment contracts will not be renewed for individuals older than 65 years.
  • 3.The employee’s period of fixed-term employment cannot exceed 10 years from the initial date of hire (or 10 years from April 1, 2013 for fixed-term employees already at RIKEN prior to this date).

In principle, the first two months of employment is considered a trial period.
Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. Commuting and housing allowances will be provided. Social insurance will be applied. Mandatory membership in the RIKEN Mutual Benefit Society (RIKEN Kyosaikai).

This position falls under the specialized duties discretionary work system; one working day will be calculated as 7 hours and 30 minutes.

Days off include public holidays, New Year's holidays (Dec. 29 - Jan 3), and RIKEN Foundation Day.
No smoking on site (designated smoking areas available).
These and other provisions are in accordance with RIKEN regulations.

RIKEN is promoting a Gender Equality Program by taking various measures to create a workplace where both men and women are able to give full rein to their talents and abilities. When applicants are judged to be equally qualified on the basis of fair and impartial criteria, women applicants will be given preference.

Also, eligible for an exemption from repayment for category 1 scholarship loans provided by the Japan Student Services Organization before fiscal year 2003, and eligible applying for the MEXT Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research (Kakenhi).

Application and required documents

Required documents

  • 1.Complete CV or CV (with photo and email address)
    * Write the RIKEN job ad number “W20119”, indicated in the parentheses next to the job title, in the RIKEN job ad number section in the upper right corner of your CV.
  • 2.List of research achievement and publications (Mark ○ within 5 major papers, and divide them into original papers, reviews, patents, etc.)
  • 3.A letter of recommendation (including one from the current supervisor, If available)
  • 4.Research proposal.
  • 5.List of competitive external funds obtained (e.g. Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research [Kakenhi]; indicate whether you are the representative researcher or the collaborator)
  • 6.Consent form for handling personal information based on GDPR
    If you are a resident of the European Economic Area (EEA), you are required to submit the document, "Consent form for handling personal information based on GDPR" with your signature.
    * You will find detailed information about General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) on the following website:
    Data protection | European Commission

How to apply

Send the PDF formatted application by email to csth-jinji [at] ml.riken.jp
(Recommendation letters must be emailed directly from the reference to csth-jinji [at] ml.riken.jp)

Note: Application documents will not be returned.


Open until the position is filled

Handling Personal Data

Submitted documents are strictly protected under the RIKEN Privacy Policy and will be used only for the purpose of applicant screening. Personal information will not be disclosed, transferred or loaned to a third party under any circumstances without just cause.

Selection process

Application screening, interview and oral presentation by selected applicants

Start of employment

From 2021.4.1 (negotiable)

Contact Information / Send application to

RIKEN Science and Technology Hub Promotion Section
Science and Technology Hub Promotion Division,
RIKEN Cluster for Science, Technology and Innovation Hub (RCSTI)
Email: Email: csth-jinji [at] ml.riken.jp
For inquiries, please send an email.


Updated as of December 16, 2020: "Salary and benefits"