Monday, November 28, 2022

The World Dynamics Project

Our colleagues Pierluigi Crescenzi, Emanuele Natale and Paulo Bruno Serafim have been doing some work on what they call the World Dynamics project, whose goal is to provide a modern framework for studying models of sustainable development, based on cutting-edge techniques from software engineering and machine learning. 

The first outcome of their work is a Julia library that allows scientists to use and adapt different world models, from Meadows et al.'s World3 to recent proposals, in an easy way.

IMHO, this is a fascinating and timely research effort. I encourage readers of this blog to try the current version of the Julia library, which is still under development. It would be great if this library contributed to "an open, interdisciplinary, and consistent comparative approach to scientific model development" and I hope that global policy makers on environmental and economic issues will use similar tools in the nearest future.

Thanks to Emanuele, Paulo and Pierluigi for their work. I'll be following its future development with great interest.

If you speak Italian, I strongly recommend this podcast, in the GSSI-SISSA Sidecar series, in which Pierluigi discusses economic growth with Michele Boldrin.

Saturday, November 12, 2022

Two faculty positions in Computer Science at Reykjavik University

My department has advertised two full-time, permanent faculty positions at any rank . Theoretical Computer Science is not the department's highest priority in hiring at this moment in time, but it is mentioned as one of the areas of interest, alongside Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, Data Science and Machine Learning, and Software Engineering. Do consider applying if you are theoretically minded, your work has, or has the potential to have, impact on any of those fields, and you'd like to join our academic family and relocate to Iceland. The call is below and at, where the application form can be found.

Two faculty positions in Computer Science at Reykjavik University

The Department of Computer Science at Reykjavik University invites applications for two full-time, permanent faculty positions at any rank in the fields of Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, Data Science and Machine Learning, Software Engineering, and Theoretical Computer Science. For one of the positions, we will give preferential treatment to excellent applicants in Software Engineering, broadly construed. However, the primary evaluation criterion is scientific quality. Outstanding candidates in other areas of Computer Science are encouraged to apply as well. See for the link to the application form.  

We are looking for energetic, highly qualified academics with a proven international research record and excellent potential in their field of study. We particularly welcome applications from researchers who have a strong network of research collaborators, can strengthen internal collaborations within the department, have the proclivity to improve their academic environment and its culture, and have the drive and potential to flourish in our environment. The Department of Computer Science at Reykjavik University is characterised by a flat hierarchical structure and every faculty member is expected to act like a principal investigator regardless of their level of employment.  
Apart from developing their research career, the successful applicants will play a full part in the teaching and administrative activities of the department, teaching courses and supervising students at both graduate and undergraduate level. Applicants with a demonstrated history of excellence in teaching are preferred.
Salary and rank are commensurate with experience. Successful applicants receive a relocation budget, some seed research funding in the first two years of their employment and support for one PhD student. Among other benefits, Reykjavik University offers its research staff the option to take research semesters (sabbaticals) every three years of satisfactory teaching and research activity and provides some additional financial support during those semesters.  
The positions are open until filled, with intended starting date in August 2023. Later starting dates can be negotiated, but preference will be given to candidates who can take up their position in August 2023. The deadline for applications is January 27, 2023. The review of the applications will begin in late January 2023 and will continue until the positions are filled.
A PhD in Computer Science or a related field is required. Applications should be submitted through the university’s online application submission system and should include the following documents:

  • a cover letter specifying whether the candidate is applying for appointment as an assistant, associate, or full professor,
  • a CV with a full list of publications, 
  • links to three to five major publications, 
  • a research statement, 
  • a teaching statement, 
  • supporting material regarding excellence in teaching, if available, and 
  • any other relevant information the applicant wishes to supply.
Please arrange to have three letters of recommendation sent directly to (subject “Faculty Positions in CS”) with a copy to Professor Luca Aceto (, Chair of the Department of Computer Science. Informal communication and discussions on any aspect related to the positions are encouraged, and interested candidates are welcome to contact the chair of the search committee, Associate Professor María Óskarsdóttir (, for further information.
Department of Computer Science at Reykjavik University
The Department of Computer Science at Reykjavik University is research intensive and carries out research-based teaching in all its degree programmes. It offers undergraduate and graduate programs in Computer Science and Software Engineering, a combined undergraduate program in Discrete Mathematics and Computer Science, two graduate programs in Data Science and one in Artificial Intelligence and Language Technology. From the autumn semester 2023, the department will also offer an MSc in Digital Health. At the time of writing, it is home to 26 faculty members, seven of whom are women, five postdoctoral researchers, and 32 PhD students representing altogether over 20 different countries. In 2022, the department had 740 students registered for its BSc and MSc programmes.

The department provides an excellent working environment in which a motivated academic can have an impact at all levels and has a career-development framework that encourages and supports independence in academic endeavours.  

The department is home to several research centres producing high-quality collaborative research in areas such as artificial intelligence, data science, financial technology, information systems, language technology, software systems, and theoretical computer science, among others; for more information on those research centres, see
For further information about the Department of Computer Science at Reykjavik University and its activities, see
Reykjavík University
On the Times Higher Education rankings for 2023, Reykjavik University is ranked among the 350 best universities world-wide, first among Icelandic universities, and 18th among Nordic ones. Moreover, it was ranked 12th amongst the best small universities in the Times Higher Education rankings 2022, when it was in first place along with eight other universities for the average number of citations per faculty and 53rd amongst all universities established fewer than 50 years ago.  

Iceland is well known for breathtaking natural beauty, with volcanoes, hot springs, lava fields and glaciers offering a dramatic landscape. It consistently ranks as one of the best places in the world to live. It offers a high quality of life, is one of the safest places in the world, with high gender equality, and strong healthcare and social-support systems. It was in second position in the 2021 UN World Happiness Report, which correlates with various life factors. Reykjavik is a vibrant and cosmopolitan city, which provides an ideal environment for combining cultural and family activities with an active lifestyle.