Postdoctoral Associate – AI for Science

Postdoctoral Associate – AI for Science

Cornell University embraces diversity and seeks candidates who will contribute to a climate that supports students, faculty and staff of all identities and backgrounds. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented and/or marginalized identities to apply.



The Cornell University AI for Science Institute (CUAISci) hosts the Eric and Wendy Schmidt AI in Science Postdoctoral Fellowship, a program of Schmidt Futures. This program supports postdocs pursuing collaborative research projects using AI to accelerate scientific discovery. Postdocs will engage in a variety of research, training, and learning opportunities to advance broad and deep adoption of AI tools across multiple scientific domains. Postdocs will become part of a global network of AI-trained researchers and be at the forefront of AI-led scientific innovation.

We seek applications for the next cohort of postdocs, to begin Fall 2023. Selected postdocs will work in a scientific domain whose primary discipline and mentor is in STEM but not in computer science, operations research, or applied mathematics.

Research Themes:

The initial research themes identified for the fellowship program at CUAISci include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • AI for Materials Discovery
  • AI for Physics
  • AI for the Biological Sciences
  • AI for the Sustainability Sciences

For potential mentors, please see the list of CUAISci-affiliated faculty and researchers, as well as Cornell webpages of other faculty and researchers in science and engineering domains.


Postdocs are expected to engage with cross-disciplinary teams to learn AI and foster deep integration of AI concepts and techniques to their scientific area. The postdoc is expected to serve as the bridge between domain scientists and AI experts, with the ability to show other domain scientists the power of AI to improve and expand studies in their field.

Selected postdocs are expected to fully participate in all program activities and be an active member of their Cornell cohort, as well as their counterpart cohorts at other program sites around the world. This will involve participating in seminars and workshops, auditing courses, publishing in high-impact scientific journals, and attending conferences. Attendance at the annual Eric and Wendy Schmidt AI in Science Postdoctoral Fellowship, a program of Schmidt Futures conference is required.

Postdoc research projects are not intended to be seed grants for new projects. We aim to support postdoc research for projects that already have preliminary results, or that are part of a long-term science program. Further, this program is meant to produce use-inspired basic and applied research with a strong AI component, driven by real-world scientific applications.

Science faculty mentors are expected to sufficiently engage with their postdoc mentee, providing training and learning opportunities, as well as career guidance. Mentors must develop an Individual Development Plan with their selected fellow, and update the plan as needed.

Application Process:

1. Postdoctoral applicants must identify a primary Cornell faculty mentor in their scientific domain. Suggested mentors can be found via the website, but are not limited to those listed.

2. Applicants, in conjunction with the Cornell science faculty mentor, will draft a proposal that includes a clear description of the topic, the AI component, and an AI mentorship plan.

3. Applications will be evaluated on (i) intellectual merit and scientific excellence, (ii) AI for science potential, (iii) cross disciplinary connections, (iv) broader societal impact, and (v) diversity, equity, and inclusion experiences and vision.

4. Applications will be evaluated by a review panel.

5. A short list of applicants will be interviewed via Zoom.

6. Applications are due on April 15, 2023. Review of applications will continue until all spots are filled.

7. The intended start date is September 1, 2023.


Requirements and Qualifications:

A major goal of this program is for postdocs to learn how to use AI to solve problems in their scientific domains. Successful candidates must exhibit excellence in their scientific domain, and show evidence of strong quantitative skills. While we do not expect a candidate to possess a deep understanding of AI, proficiency in AI will be considered in the selection process. Applicants must hold a PhD prior to their start date.

Applicants must have a science mentor and intended department for appointment. Science mentors must be faculty members in a relevant field and department, for example in the College of Engineering, the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, or the College of Arts and Sciences. The primary discipline and department of both the postdoc and mentor must not be in computer science, operations research, or applied mathematics.

Support and Benefits:

Selected postdocs will be appointed as endowed employees at Cornell University in a department identified according to the criteria above. Starting salary is $74,160 plus endowed employee benefits.

Application Materials:

Please submit applications by the due date to Dr. Rebecca Dillon. Applications should be submitted as a single pdf and named as ApplicantLastName_ApplicantFirstName-Science.pdf. Applications should contain the following:

  • Applicant’s CV
  • Applicant’s transcript showing proof of PhD or letter from current PhD advisor stating intended completion date
  • Research proposal
  • Maximum 3 pages, 11-point font, 1-inch margins, single spaced
  • Will be reviewed according to the evaluation criteria listed in the Application Process section
  • Letter of support from selected Cornell domain science mentor
  • 2 other reference letters


Pay Range:

Refer to Posting Language

Pay Ranges:

The hiring rate of pay for the successful candidate will be determined considering the following criteria:

  • Prior relevant work or industry experience.
  • Education level to the extent education is relevant to the position.
  • Academic Discipline (faculty pay ranges reflects 9-month annual salary)
  • Unique applicable skills.

As part of the university's comprehensive vaccination program, all Cornell employees are required to have and provide proof of an FDA-or WHO-authorized or approved COVID-19 primary vaccination or have obtained a university-approved disability/medical or religious exemption, regardless of their role and work location.


Employment Assistance:

For general questions about the position or the application process, please contact the Recruiter listed in the job posting or email

If you require an accommodation for a disability in order to complete an employment application or to participate in the recruiting process, you are encouraged to contact Cornell University's Office of Institutional Equity and Title IX at voice (607) 255-2242, or email at

Applicants that do not have internet access are encouraged to visit your local library, or local Department of Labor. You may also visit the office of Workforce Recruitment and Retention Monday - Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. to use a dedicated workstation to complete an online application.

Notice to Applicants:

Please read the required Notice to Applicants statement by clicking here. This notice contains important information about applying for a position at Cornell as well as some of your rights and responsibilities as an applicant.

EEO Statement:

Diversity and Inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We are a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities. We also recognize a lawful preference in employment practices for Native Americans living on or near Indian reservations. Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students, and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose, and contribute creative ideas to further the university's mission of teaching, discovery, and engagement.


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Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose and contribute creative ideas to further the university's mission of teaching, discovery and engagement. With our main campus located in Ithaca, NY, Cornell's far-flung global presence includes the medical college's campuses on the Upper East Side of Manhattan and Doha, Qatar, as well as the Cornell Tech campus located on Roosevelt Island in the heart of New York City.

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