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PhD student (4-year position) in Behavioural aspects of Internet-of-Things: user skillsPosted by: University of Twente
Posted date: 2017-Aug-10
The latest phase of technological development, the Internet-of-Things (IoT), is composed of everyday devices implemented with microprocessors and sensors (e.g., sound, movement, temperature) beyond the rectangular confines of PCs, laptops, tablets and smartphones. The technology has been finding wide applicability and is expected to deliver great benefits to its users. The possibilities range from better healthcare as a result of health monitoring through wearables to less energy consumption as a result of smart thermostats. However, many of the possibilities that are emphasized in popular media are techno-utopian promises. The IoT combines device-device, device-person and person-person networked technologies. The devices and persons involved create a complex, omnipresent system in which IoT devices can go unnoticed and make autonomous decisions. So far, behavioral factors necessary to understand the impact of the IoT have been largely ignored, and we know little about the key driver for benefitting from the IoT: skills. To ensure more equal opportunities, the aim of this PhD project is to investigate inequalities in IoT skills among the general user population.
After interpreting the IoT system, the PhD candidate will develop a theoretical framework for IoT skills, which is scientifically relevant because it requires a new approach: the IoT differs from prior phases of technological development. The next step will be actual measuring the identified IoT skills. Although performance tests are labor-intensive, the measurement of IoT skills should include actually using the IoT. Participants should take part in enacting situations that require the use of the actual IoT. The goal in the project is to create tasks that involve situations that are closely linked to real-life challenges. These tasks will be administered in performance tests (for energy and for health) in a lab environment. Three data sources are used: data generated by the IoT devices, successful assignment completion and thinking-aloud data. To quantify the effect of the several potential IoT skill determinants, a survey will be administered to the participants of the tests.
You have a master’s degree in communication science, sociology, educational science, or a related field. In addition, you:
Your application should include the following documents:
Applications should be uploaded via www.utwente.nl/vacatures/en > vacancies > current vacancies. The application deadline is September 10th, 2017. Interviews will be held in September. Since only three documents can be uploaded per application, please combine documents if needed.
Your primary supervisor will be dr. Alexander van Deursen, at University of Twente. Please visit his website for an overview of his research: www.alexandervandeursen.nl.
Conditions of employment
A four-year full-time Ph.D. position, starting November 1 (preferred), 2017. The gross salary is € 2.222,-- per month in the first year going up to € 2.840,-- in the fourth year. On top of this, you receive a holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary and an 8.3% end-of-year bonus. You will have a budget for traveling to SIENNA workshops and to international conferences. We offer excellent auxiliary terms of employment, such as professional and personal development programs; a secondary remuneration package; a dynamic environment with enthusiastic colleagues; an organization focusing on internationalization and a high degree of responsibility and independence.
The University of Twente. We stand for science and technology, high tech, human touch, education and research that matter. New technology which drives change, innovation and progress in society. The University of Twente is the only campus university in the Netherlands; divided over five faculties we provide more than fifty educational programs. The University of Twente has a strong focus on personal development and talented researchers are given scope for carrying out pioneering research. The Faculty of Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences strives to hold a leading position in their fields in relation to the science and technology research programs of the University of Twente. In all these fields, the faculty provides bachelor, master and professional development programs.