Research Associate, Remote Onboarding Framework

Alan Turing Institute London United Kingdom Research Programmes
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Company Description

Named in honour of Alan Turing, the Institute is a place for inspiring, exciting work and we need passionate[FD1] , sharp, and innovative people who want to use their skills to contribute to our mission to make great leaps in data science and AI research to change the world for the better.

Please find more information about us here



We are looking for two candidates to work on the Trustworthy Digital Infrastructure for Identity Systems project. They will work closely with the Principal Investigators, the Technical Development Manager, other PDRAs and programme management staff across the team.

The project and roles sit within the Finance and Economics Programme which brings together leading experts in data science, machine learning, finance and the social sciences, from both academia and industry to tackle the most challenging questions by producing world-leading research with significant impact. The programme works closely with government and the industry to exploit the potential of new technologies in the financial sector and economic research, and to position the UK as the leader in these areas. The programme is led by the Programme Director, Lukasz Szpruch.


Many developing economies suffer from the issue where citizens cannot access formal identity[1]. To overcome this issue introducers are used to formally vouch for a citizen that they know but who has no way of proving who they are. The introducer will travel to the onboarding centre with the citizen so that they can be committed to the identity system and gain access to the benefits that this provides. The alternative is where the onboarding ‘centre’ travels to remote communities that has a concentration of citizens with no formal identity, but does have at least one trusted person that can act as an introducer. Both solutions unfortunately are expensive and logistically problematic.

The purpose of this research is to explore the opportunities of crowd sourcing the onboarding of citizens onto a country’s digital identity system to persons of authority within the community. The goal is to provide the means whereby the introducer can use a mobile device and follow a process that enables self-verification and for them to also provide witness to the citizen’s existence. This process will support the capturing of some level of biometrics in the process which could be sufficient to provide a full, or provisional, identity for the citizen. This project will explore the risks to the process and the individuals, it will also address anomaly detection methods to determine inappropriate behaviours in the onboarding process. Outputs will include prototype code that supports the verification of the proposal and how it will be implemented.

Role deliverables

  • A framework that enables remote onboarding for citizens with no formal identification
  • A prototype that demonstrate the end-to-end process
  • Final report and publication on process / findings

This role is aimed at individuals at Research Assistant level, who have not yet completed their PhD, however, postgraduate applicants will also be considered.


  • Scope, pilot and deliver high quality research activity under the Direction of the Principal Investigator and Programme Director:
  • Drive collaboration with academic experts and broader research partners from across the Turing and the wider Turing community
  • Publish and disseminate high-quality research papers and publications detailing research output and project case-studies.
  • Become part of the broader partnership team and be expected to engage on a regular basis with the partner.
  • Present, disseminate and explain our work at internal and external events hosted by Turing and/or the partner.
  • Contribute to the life of the Institute and support its community.
  • To undertake appropriate administration tasks
  • Support the Principal Investigator and research group in the design and development of the research programme.


  • Research Assistant: Near completion of higher degree or equivalent level of professional qualification in Mathematics, Computer Science or closely related discipline.
  • Research Associate: PhD in Mathematics, Computer Science or a closely related discipline, or equivalent level of professional experience
  • Experience of developing biometrics for mobile applications.
  • Knowledge of issues of exclusion, privacy, fraud and risk in identity systems.
  • Track record of programming and software development.
  • Track record of the ability to initiate, develop and deliver high quality research aligned with the research strategy indicated by the PI and any industrial stakeholders and to publish in peer reviewed journals and conferences.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills with the ability to clearly communicate complex, specialist or conceptual information/research findings clearly and persuasively to diverse audiences. This will include the ability to explain technical concepts to technical and non-technical audiences.

Other information


If you are interested in this opportunity, please click the apply button below. You will need to register on the applicant portal and complete the application form including your CV and covering letter. If you have questions about the role or would like to apply using a different format, please contact us on 020 3970 2148 or 0203 862 3340, or email [email protected].

CLOSING DATE FOR APPLICATIONS: Tuesday 7th February 2023 at 23:59

We reserve the right to close this vacancy early or to interview suitable candidates before the closing date if enough applications are received.

If you are applying for more than one role at the Turing, please note that only one Cover Letter can be visible on your profile at one time. If you wish to apply for multiple roles and do not want to overwrite your existing Cover Letter, please apply for the role using the button below and forward your additional cover letter directly to [email protected] quoting the job title.


This full-time post is offered on fixed term basis for 6-months from the date of appointment (possibility of extension). The successful candidate must be in post no later than 01 June 2023. Research Assistants will be appointed at an annual salary of £36,236. The salary range for Research Associates is £38,850 - £46,200.

This offer includes our excellent benefits, including flexible working and family friendly policies,

Candidates who have not yet been officially awarded their PhD will be appointed as Research Assistant at a salary of £36,236 per annum.

The Alan Turing Institute is based at the British Library, in the heart of London’s Knowledge Quarter.

We are currently assessing the results of our hybrid working trial, which ran for six months. We will soon publish a long-term workplace policy: as a guide, we anticipate this will be between 2-4 days per month. Some roles may require the jobholder to spend a greater number of days in the office, but the hiring manager will be able to confirm this during the interview.


The Alan Turing Institute is committed to creating an environment where diversity is valued and everyone is treated fairly. In accordance with the Equality Act, we welcome applications from anyone who meets the specific criteria of the post regardless of age, disability, ethnicity, gender reassignment, marital or civil partnership status, pregnancy and maternity, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation.

We are committed to making sure our recruitment process is accessible and inclusive.

This includes making reasonable adjustments for candidates who have a disability or long-term condition. Please contact us at [email protected] to find out how we can assist you.

Please note all offers of employment are subject to continuous eligibility to work in the UK and satisfactory pre-employment security screening which includes a DBS Check.

Full details on the pre-employment screening process can be requested from [email protected].