Title: Visualizing image construction in astrophysics  
 
Keywords: information visualization, HCI, activity traces, astrophysics, scientific activity, scientific processes, STS.
Description: 
This post-doc position is part of the Episteme project. Our overall goal is to study how the “digital milieu” influences scientific processes and to what extent the way of carrying scientific activity has evolved and been transformed. Our approach is multi-disciplinary (computer-science, astrophysics, philosophy) and consists in studying how researchers work with data : How they process it, how they collaborate on it, how they represent it, etc.
The present postdoctoral researcher will collaborate with an epistemology post-doc on the analysis and visualization of astrophysicists’ activity (from CEA Saclay IRFU [1]). Together they will study the so-called “ground segment” processes that  go from reception of satellite data on the ground and their calibration, to the production of scientific imagery and publications. Two astrophysical fields will be studied: star formation and cosmology, with a focus on the star forming region  RCW36/VelaC and the GOODS galaxy deep field observed with the Herschel  space observatory. 
Based on traces of the scientific process, the post-doc will work on three categories of visualization tools: 
  •  for the epistemology team, so that they can analyse, and interpret the traces of scientific activity; 
  •  for the  scientists themselves, so that they reflect on their own activity and get insights on the way it is conducted; 
  • for the general public so that it can develop an understanding of astrophysics scientific activity. 
The project is well funded and will provide an excellent environment for publishing in leading venues in HCI and Infovis.  
The postdoc is part of the Episteme project (2014-2018) and funded by the French National Research Agency (ANR). Episteme is a multi-disciplinary  project involving astrophysicists, historians,  philosophers, computer  scientists and media specialists from IRI Centre  Pompidou, CEA Saclay  IRFU, LIRIS University of Lyon 1, LINA University  of Nantes, France  Télévisions, Mediapart and Centre d’Histoire sociale  du 20ème siècle  University of Paris I).
Duration: 24 months, beginning Fall 2015. 
Workplace: LINA, University of Nantes, frequent travels to Paris (Saclay) are to be expected. 
Profile: PhD with honours in HCI, Datavis, activity analysis, interest for humanities. Good programming skills. 
Salary: > 2000€ net, depending on experience and qualification  
How to apply: send CV + motivation + 2 references to yannick.prie@univ-nantes.fr and aurelien.tabard@univ-lyon1.fr 

 

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