Ethical and Theoretical AI Lab - Chair Professor/Professor of Practice/Professor/Associate Professor

Ref: 4865

Hong Kong Baptist University

Hong Kong

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Role Managed by:

Felix Chan

Research Associate

t: +852 3702 6493


Primary Practice Group: Higher Education and Research

Salary & Benefits: Commensurate upon experience

Closing Date:


Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU), ranked 262 in the QS world rankings and in the world top 75 in THE’s World Impact survey (2020), has defined six conceptual interdisciplinary research “Laboratories” to enable academics from different backgrounds to work together on common sets of problems and to contribute to the positioning of this young and dynamic University as a research-led liberal arts institution of global significance.  

Details of the six interdisciplinary research labs can be found on the HKBU Research website . 

The Ethical and Theoretical AI Lab is one of the six labs.  One of the aims is to build research strength in the study of the ethical and social implications of AI and of related foundational challenges in the development of future AI. The focus on AI ethics is a natural choice in light of the existing mass of experts in applied ethics and humanities research at HKBU. It will also be a timely and significant endeavour, because the explosive development of AI technologies has already given rise to a host of challenging moral and societal issues. Future developments of AI are expected to pose grand questions about human dignity and, as some luminaries have warned, to expose humanity to a serious existential risk.  We are now shifting our efforts from making machines do more things to making sure that machines can do the right thing. This shift is exactly the research focus of the Lab.

The lab will also pursue key theoretical inquiries in AI research that are closely related to the theme of ethical AI. Examples include Explainable AI, Validation AI, and Emotion AI.

The Role

Five senior scholars will be recruited in the immediate future to lead the Lab’s research agenda. Consistent with the interdisciplinary nature of the Ethical and Theoretical AI Lab initiative, these leading scholars will find appropriate academic homes in departments across the university, including, for example, the Department of Religion and Philosophy, the Department of Translation, Interpreting, and Intercultural Studies, the Department of Humanities and Creative Writing, the Department of Computer Science, the Department of Mathematics, or relevant departments in the School of Communication and the School of Business. It is expected that one or more of the five positions will be filled by applicants with expertise in mathematical modelling and algorithmic development, as these relate to central issues in theoretical and ethical AI.

Expertise in one or more of the following areas would be a major advantage:

  • AI Ethics (the foundations of moral machines)
  • Machine Behavior
  • Cognitive Science
  • AI Validation
  • Explainable AI (and Symbolic AI)
  • Foundations of Emotion AI/Affective Computing
  • Computational and Cognitive Linguistics
  • AI and Digital Humanities

Colleagues recruited will have access to seed money and appropriate research facilities/support, as well as a generous array of competitive research funding from Hong Kong’s Research Grants Council, the Innovation and Technology Commission, and other external sources.

The Ideal Candidate

Interested candidates should have relevant expertise, a proven research record, and the readiness to contribute to an interdisciplinary research team.  They should be talented, motivated and committed to the Lab to make it a sustainable research hub. 

Appointment Terms

The above positions are on tenure-track with initial appointment on three-year fixed-term contracts.  Re-appointments thereafter will be subject to mutual agreement and availability of funding.  Tenured appointments, if applicable, are expected to be attained within six years.  Rank and salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.

How to Apply

HKBU will be supported in this appointment process by the executive search firm Perrett Laver. Applicants are invited to submit their applications which should include the following:

  • a cover letter
  • an up-to-date CV

You may apply, or download further information about the role, via this page.

Initial enquiries and requests for information may be directed in confidence to Dr. Felix Chan by email via this page. Review of applications is on-going and will continue until the positions are filled.

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