Research Game Developer
University of California, Santa Cruz - Santa Cruz, CA

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Assistant, Associate or Full Project Scientist

The Center for Games and Playable Media (CGPM) invites applications from outstanding scientists for a Project Scientist position of Research Game Developer on the IMMERSE project, a game-based cultural training system. The research game developer will participate in research on autonomous character AI and social simulation, perform development on the autonomous character and social simulation architectures, and author character behaviors and social simulation primitives within the architecture, including the animation solution for character animation. The successful candidate will be expected to author or co-author papers for publication in conferences and journals, and attend and present work at professional conferences.

IMMERSE is a projected funded under the DARPA Strategic Social Interaction Modules program. The goal of the project is to produce a game-based training environment that teaches people how to be "good strangers", supporting the practice of skills necessary to have successful social interactions when in novel culture and language contexts. This will be accomplished via virtual dramatic scenarios, realized within the Unity game engine, in which the player interacts with computer-controlled autonomous characters in high-consequence social environments, learning how to quickly recognize and navigate the social interactions norms in these environments. At UC Santa Cruz, the project is run within the Expressive Intelligence Studio, one of the research groups within the Center for Games and Playable Media. Our approach will build upon the autonomous character and story management technologies successfully demonstrated in the interactive drama Fa├žade, and the social simulation system successfully demonstrated in the experimental game Prom Week. Both these games were previously developed within the Expressive Intelligence Studio. The UC Santa Cruz team will be coordinating with four other teams working on IMMERSE - the other teams are developing the pedagogical AI, the full-body immersive interface, and art assets.

In recognition of the fact that some qualified applicants will not have a Ph.D., or wish to focus on implementation rather than research activities, this position is cross-listed as Programmer/Analyst 3 (Staff Employment Opportunities: Search Postings, Job Number 1203664)

RANK: Assistant Project Scientist, Step 1 - Full Project Scientist, Step 4.

SALARY: Commensurate with qualifications and experience and subject to availability of appropriate funding.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Ph.D. in Computer Science or relevant field, with some research or industry experience in game AI, particularly autonomous characters, social simulation or AI-based interactive storytelling. Demonstrated significant, original, and creative contributions to a research or creative program or project.

PREFERED QUALIFICATIONS: Five or more years research or industry experience in game AI, particularly autonomous characters, social simulation or AI-based interactive storytelling.

TERM OF APPOINTMENT: The initial appointment is for one year, with the possibility of extension through March, 2015. Should the hiring unit propose reappointment, a review to assess performance will be conducted. In addition, reappointment is contingent upon availability of funding.

START DATE: As soon as possible after closing.

TO APPLY: Applicants should send a letter of application, curriculum vitae, copies or URLs of not more than three research papers, and the names and contact information for three references who would be willing to provide letters of recommendation to the IMMERSE project director: Dr. Daniel Shapiro . Email applications are strongly preferred.

Alternative mailing address:
Dr. Daniel Shapiro
Computer Science Department
1156 High Street, M/S: SOE-3
Santa Cruz, CA 95064

Please refer to position #T12-43 in your reply.

CLOSING DATE: Position is open until filled. To ensure full consideration, applications must be received by May 25, 2012. Applications received after this date may not be considered.

UC Santa Cruz faculty make significant contributions to the body of research that has earned the University of California the ranking as the foremost public higher education institution in the world. In the process, our faculty demonstrate that cutting-edge research, excellent teaching and outstanding service are mutually supportive.

The University of California, Santa Cruz is an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity Employer, committed to excellence through diversity. We strive to establish a climate that welcomes, celebrates, and promotes respect for the contributions of all students and employees.

Inquiries regarding the University's equal employment opportunity policies may be directed to: Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the University of California, Santa Cruz, CA 95064; (831) 459-2686. Under Federal law, the University of California may employ only individuals who are legally able to work in the United States as established by providing documents as specified in the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. Certain UCSC positions funded by federal contracts or sub-contracts require the selected candidate to pass an E-Verify check. More information is available here or from the Academic Personnel Office at (831) 459-5579.

If you need assistance due to a disability please contact the Academic Personnel Office at 499 Clark Kerr Hall (831) 459-5579. This position description is available in alternate formats, which may be requested from Academic Personnel at (831) 459-5579.



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