UCSF announces Postdoc in Bioethics

Start Date: Fall/Winter 2019 (flexible date)

The Program in Bioethics at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) seeks applications for a Postdoctoral Scholar at 100% percent time.

Position Overview

This is a full-time 12-month appointment with the potential for renewal contingent on funding. The successful applicant will work with a small, interdisciplinary ethics team within a study on the development of artificial intelligence (AI)/machine learning (ML) approaches to newborn and pharmacogenetic screening. The project is sponsored by the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub and is a collaboration of researchers from UCSF, UC Berkeley, and Stanford. The position will primarily be located at the UCSF Mission Bay Campus, but will require local travel to interact with researchers and postdocs at the UCSF Program in Bioethics, the UCB Ethics and Regulation Group for Innovative Technologies, and the Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics.

The ethics team is led by Barbara Koenig (UCSF), Jodi Halpern (UCB), and David Magnus (Stanford). Potential lines of inquiry that may arise in the project include: 1) Issues of informed consent, disclosure and return of results, and governance/oversight related to secondary uses of data. 2) The use and formation of language and metaphors to describe the research and convey findings to the public. And finally, 3) emerging ethics issues related to AI/ML, including issues of inclusion and accuracy, that have only recently been elucidated.


Responsibilities will include the following:
1. Organize and conduct ethnographic observations and interviews within the context of the larger study.
2. Systematic review of the literature for the most recent research related to biobanking, newborn and pharmacogenetic screening, use of patient data and consent, and community engagement around emerging technologies.
3. Develop reports and manuscripts for co-authored publication.
4. Project management including:
• Coordinating efforts of the three bioethics centers related to the overall project
• Preparation of slides and presentations
• Annual and other reporting, including human research protection

Required Qualifications:

• Doctoral-level degree in sociology, anthropology, ethics, philosophy, bioethics, public health, Science and Technology Studies, or other relevant discipline, with fewer than two years of post-PhD research, by the start date.
• Demonstrated record of accomplishment in research and data analysis.
• Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively (both written and spoken English)
• Ability to independently identify and complete tasks as well as meet deadlines.
New Position Announcement
Postdoctoral Scholar Sought: Bioethics and Innovative Technologies

Desired Qualifications:

• Exceptional research and literature review skills spanning the scientific aspects of genetic screening/testing, AI/ML, as well as bioethics and the social sciences.
• Record of conducting social science and/or bioethics research and publishing in these areas.
• Experience working on an interdisciplinary team.
• Demonstrated experience with grants/contracts.


The University of California San Francisco is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status.


Salary and benefits are based on the UCSF Postdoc Salary Scale and can be found here. Salary and benefits are competitive with other postdoctoral positions in the Bay Area, and include eligibility for campus housing at UCSF.

To apply:

Send the following materials as a single PDF file to Matty Norstad (matthew.norstad@ucsf.edu) by September 6th, 2019:
a. a letter summarizing your research experience and interest in the position,
b. your curriculum vitae,
c. the names and contact information only for three potential referees (do not solicit reference letters unless requested), and,
d. a brief academic writing sample.


Direct inquiries about the position to Matty Norstad (matthew.norstad@ucsf.edu).

For more information check out the full advertisement for the Bioethics & Innovative Technologies Postdoc.