2 PhD's for Design research with Data and AI to Servitize Professional Printing

Eindhoven University of Technology
January 22, 2023
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2 PhD's for Design research with Data and AI to Servitize Professional

Printing

We are seeking two Industrial Design PhD candidates for the “Design, Data and AI in Servitizing Professional Printing” research project.

Position

PhD-student

Irène Curie Fellowship

No

Department(s)

Industrial Design

FTE

1,0

Date off

22/01/2023

Reference number

V51.6199

Job description

Project background

Canon Professional Printing (CPP), formerly Océ, is a leading multinational manufacturer of high-end digital inkjet printing hardware and software for professional printing markets. CPP solutions are used by variety of customers in different markets, having different business models.

In addition to supporting diverse businesses, CPP printing solutions are also used in varied ways and workflows, at different scales and process integrations. Even between two similar types of customers there might be considerable differences in how they organize their work, both at company and at operator level.

To address this diversity, CPP is developing the Pigment Design System as one design system across the whole hardware and software portfolio. Pigment Design System is the basis for all UIs, making them highly flexible and customizable for an optimal and personalized experience. How users configure and interact with these UIs gives CPP an understanding about customer workflows and how CPP products are used in these workflows.

  • Through this research done by means of Pigment Design System, CPP aims to better understand customers and customer roles through collecting and analysing interaction flows and contextual data, and
  • to help customers get more value from the CPP solutions by means of better workflow integration, AI-supported personalization and advanced analytics.
  • This project offers two 4-year design-research PhD positions. To address the goal of Canon Professional Printing, we will, together with the CPP design and R&D teams, focus on two clusters of research questions around UI/UX and functionality/service:

    1. How can data and AI techniques help in getting more insight in how users compose their UI ecosystem based on the applications provided within the Pigment Design System. More specifically, we want to address the following questions:

  • Which Pigment functionalities are used by which roles?
  • How much are the applications active and used per role?
  • What are the primary and secondary applications?
  • What UI optimizations per specific environment are recommended to boost productivity and improve accessibility of service offerings?
  • 2. How can data and AI techniques help in getting more insight in how different users utilize printers and software in their workflows. More specifically, we want to address the following questions:

  • Which products and (functionalities within the products) are prominently used or entirely absent in each environment?
  • Which functionalities are used in combination?
  • What bottlenecks can be found in customer workflows?
  • Which optimized workflows for each environment are recommended to prevent redundancies and discover missing solution opportunities?
  • This project aims to generate new knowledge and actionable methodological advances regarding workflow design for smart operator support, workflow- oriented and servitized predictive maintenance, and finally the use of digital twins in the user interface design of high-tech systems. The project will be part of the EAISI program and therefore share, learn, and disseminate within the EAISI community and through the TU/e master programs Data Science and AI, AI in Engineering Systems. The project aims for open-access publishing of widely applicable methods and is organized to enable close collaboration and colocation of researchers from the project partners. The project leverages ongoing methodological developments in the Industrial Design department with other regional industries (for example, e/MTIC MEDICAID project), and will use and contribute to the ‘Data-AI in Design' efforts at TU/e and beyond.

    You will be part of an innovative multi-disciplinary team

    The two PhD positions will be embedded in a multidisciplinary academic and industrial supervision team to tackle the challenges in a timely and effective way. The research will be carried out in three phases: contextual research, data-supported design, and evaluation and iteration.

    Design Research PhD position 1: understanding customers and customer roles

    In this design research position, the PhD student will explore how to use data-enabled design methods to understand and evaluate the context, the roles, and the workflows of CPP customers. During the first phase he/she will be carrying out contextual research by means of in-depth functional data collection and qualitative methods. In the second phase he/she establishes data-supported design. In the third phase he/she will be leading the evaluation.

    Design Research PhD position 2: designing new workflow integrations with AI-supported personalization

    In this design research position, the PhD student will explore how to design for and evaluate workflow integrations and work with advanced analytics to develop AI-supported personalization tools. During the first phase, he/she will be generating propositions based on the insights in the design of adaptive, personalized user interfaces in the Pigment design system. In the second phase, he/she will design and implement new UIs and workflow support. In the third phase, he/she will follow the evaluation and iterate accordingly.

    Methodologically, we will rely on data-supported ethnography, data-enabled design, and research-through-design, and leverage CPP's data platform and analytics expertise. Throughout the project, we see opportunities to work with advanced artificial intelligence to steer real-time data collection, product and UI adaptation and the modelling of workflows. Given the multi- disciplinarity of EAISI researchers and partners, we will be able to rely on experts in data mining, process mining, federated learning, and hybrid machine-learning approaches to further refine analysis and design propositions. The two PhD candidates will closely collaborate and share design research methods, data, AI models, and technological platforms as complementary focus points of each PhD position.

    The PhD students will explore the questions by applying the research through design methodology with hands-on designing and prototyping in close contact with the CPP R&D teams, users, and stakeholders of the Pigment Design System such as UX architects, UX designers, Visual UX Designers, Quality Leads and Workflow Architects. These will be closely involved in the co-creation process.

    Eindhoven University of Technology (T U/e, www. tue.nl) is one of Europe's leading research universities. The Eindhoven area, in the southern part of the Netherlands, is one of Europe's top 'innovation ecosystems', with many high-tech companies and institutes. TU/e is intertwined with many of these companies and institutes, and research at TU/e is characterized by a combination of academic excellence, industrial relevance and societal interweaving. The Department of Industrial Design (ID) of the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e), founded in 2001, is a maturing department with over 650 students, both Bachelor and Master, and around 40 research staff members and about 10 lecturers. The mission of the department of Industrial Design at TU/e is Research on and Education in the Design of Systems with Emerging Technologies in a Societal Context.

    The PhDs will be under the supervision of Prof. dr. Lin-Lin Chen and Dr. Mathias Funk in the Department of Industrial Design at Eindhoven University of Technology. The project will be executed in collaboration with Canon Production Printing, Venlo; Frederique de Jongh of CPP is closely involved in the supervision of the PhD students. At the TU/e, the positions are situated within the research cluster of ‘Future Everyday'. The Future Everyday cluster investigates the everyday interactions between individual people and the highly interconnected technology that surrounds them. Researchers in the Future Everyday cluster measure, model and design for the user experience when individuals interact with social-technological networks in their homes, at work, in transit, while doing sports or going out.

    Job requirements

    Requirements for Position 1

  • A Masters degree in an Industrial Design related discipline (e.g. Interaction Design, UX Design, Design Research). Masters degree needs to be obtained before the prospective starting date of this position.
  • A design portfolio demonstrating skills and knowledge in contextual design exploration, digital fabrication, and interactive prototyping (of AI- enabled solutions), user evaluation test design & execution skills.
  • A commitment to research through design, reflection, and co-design.
  • Ability to conduct and deliver high quality research both independently and as part of an interdisciplinary team.
  • Ability to work with data and interpreting data visualizations
  • Good conceptual design skills for UI and data visualization.
  • Openness, interest, and good soft skills to work closely with people from other disciplines and across organizations.
  • Eager to learn and tackle complex industrial challenges. Experience working in an industrial (design) context is a plus.
  • Fluency in English is a must (written and spoken), Dutch (spoken) desirable.
  • Eager to spend part of your time on-site with project partners (CPP in Venlo) to fully apprehend and profit from the expertise, capabilities and facilities of Canon as the industrial partner.
  • Requirements for Position 2

  • A Masters degree in a relevant technical discipline (e.g., Computer Science, Data Science, Industrial Design). Masters degree needs to be obtained before the prospective starting date of this position.
  • A demonstrable skill set and knowledge in working with data and applied artificial intelligence; e.g., databases, data modelling, machine learning, knowledge representation, digital twins etc. This can be through formal qualifications such as a degree or minor, or through relevant work shown in a portfolio.
  • Hands-on programming skills for AI and data visualization. Knowledge and skills in Programming languages (e.g., Python, SQL, Java, JavaScript), Data Visualization Libraries and tools (e.g. D3, Processing), 3D digital models and visualization tools (e.g., Unity, Three.js), and eager to further develop these skills.
  • A commitment to research through design, reflection, and co-design.
  • Affinity with contextual design explorations, digital fabrication, and interactive prototyping (of AI-enabled solutions).
  • Affinity with user research and user evaluation.
  • Good conceptual design skills for UI and data visualization.
  • Ability to conduct and deliver high quality research both independently and as part of an interdisciplinary team.
  • Openness, interest, and good soft skills to work closely with people from other disciplines and across organizations.
  • Eager to learn and tackle complex industrial challenges. Experience working in an industrial (design) context is a plus.
  • Fluency in English is a must (written and spoken), Dutch (spoken) desirable.
  • Eager to spend part of your time on-site with project partners (CPP in Venlo) to fully apprehend and profit from the expertise, capabilities and facilities of Canon as the industrial partner.
  • Conditions of employment

    A meaningful job in a dynamic and ambitious university, in an interdisciplinary setting and within an international network. You will work on a beautiful, green campus within walking distance of the central train station. In addition, we offer you:

  • Full-time employment for four years, with an intermediate evaluation (go/no-go) after nine months. You will spend 10% of your employment on teaching tasks.
  • Salary and benefits (such as a pension scheme, paid pregnancy and maternity leave, partially paid parental leave) in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.
  • A year-end bonus of 8.3% and annual vacation pay of 8%.
  • High-quality training programs and other support to grow into a self- aware, autonomous scientific researcher. At TU/e we challenge you to take charge of your own learning process.
  • An excellent technical infrastructure, on-campus children's day care and sports facilities.
  • An allowance for commuting, working from home and internet costs.
  • A Staff Immigration Team and a tax compensation scheme (the 30% facility) for international candidates.
  • Information and application

    About us

    Eindhoven University of Technology is an internationally top-ranking university in the Netherlands that combines scientific curiosity with a hands- on attitude. Our spirit of collaboration translates into an open culture and a top-five position in collaborating with advanced industries. Fundamental knowledge enables us to design solutions for the highly complex problems of today and tomorrow.

    Information

    Do you recognize yourself in this profile and would you like to know more? Please contact the hiring manager dr. Mathias Funk, email m.funkattue.nl. General information about the Department Industrial Design, candidates will find on https:// www. id.tue.nl.

    Visit our website for more information about the application process or the conditions of employment. You can also contact HR Services Industrial Design, tel. +31(0) 40 2475336, e-mail: HR-IndustrialDesignattue.nl .

    Are you inspired and would like to know more about working at TU/e? Please visit our career page.

    Application

    We invite you to submit a complete application by using the apply button. The application should include the following documents (all in English):

  • a written application letter with a clear motivation section
  • a portfolio
  • a curriculum vitae
  • The deadline for applications is 22 January 2023. However, if you are interested, we invite you to apply as soon possible. Selection will begin immediately and continue until the position has been filled.

    Please note that a maximum of 5 documents of 2 MB each can be uploaded via the apply now button. If you have more than 5 documents you will have to combine them.

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