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Vacancy: Assistant/associate professor in operations research and artificial intelligence for airline operations


At the University of Twente, we are excited to be part of the Kickstart AI initiative, which aims to leverage the power of artificial intelligence (AI) in The Netherlands. Join our university and our partner KLM Royal Dutch Airlines as an assistant/associate professor, and use research and education to impact science, airline operations and society at large.

Are you looking for an ambitious environment, in which you can carry out ground-breaking academic research in collaboration with KLM, while teaching Artificial Intelligence and Operations Research? Join our team and get ready to make a significant, sustainable impact on science and society.

Check out this unique position below and apply!
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Digital transformation

The key to airline profitability is striking the right balance between the various factors that affect operational performance. Airlines that take a data-driven, action-oriented and digitally supported approach have the best chance to emerge stronger from the COVID-19 crisis. We address the biggest challenge that airlines will continue to face: integrated decision-making across the organisation and changing planning horizons.                    Read more...

“AI has access to real-time data, such as weather, traffic, track-and-trace and other sensor information. It can handle this abundance of information and make sense of it. It can find patterns humans wouldn’t find, making all kinds of decision-making problems a lot easier to resolve, such as planning, scheduling, routing, workflows and more.”
Martijn Mes, Associate Professor, High-Tech Business and Entrepreneurship Group, UT

Part of the Kickstart AI initiative

This joint UT-KLM position is the result of a collaboration between the Operations Decision Support (ODS) department of KLM and the Industrial Engineering and Business Information Systems (IEBIS) section within the High-Tech Business and Entrepreneurship (HBE) department at UT. As an Assistant/Associate Professor and part of the Kickstart AI initiative, you will work in close collaboration with both these departments, splitting your time between UT in Enschede and the ODS offices in Schiphol Oost.

AI makes a world of difference

In this position, you will perform cutting-edge scientific research, inspired by the challenges and problems in airline operations, and you will consult at KLM on the digitisation of airline operations and logistics. KLM’s many operational processes are intensely interconnected, affecting passengers, crew, ground staff, as well as flights and profitability. ‘Using AI will enable smart decisions and quicker responses to changes,’ says Dennis Prak, Assistant Professor Industrial Engineering and Business Information Systems at UT. ‘For example, if an aircraft needs to be suddenly taken out of service, AI can help us determine the number of swaps required and the best combination of short and long delays to avoid cancellations and create an adapted schedule. It takes only a few minutes, but it can make a huge difference in terms of profit, time, and passenger experience.’

Bridging theory and practice

In your role at UT, you will be (co-)teaching and coordinating courses in our Bachelor, Master, and Executive programmes, supervising PhD students, and supervising students in their graduation assignments. For example, we offer the Minor Aerospace Management & Operations, which is open to students from different programmes. The course focuses on operation decisions and looks at questions such as, ‘What happens at an airport?’, or ‘What decision does an airline face?’ As a university, we tend to focus on the theoretical side of things. However, being partially positioned with KLM means you will give practical meaning to the theory you teach.

“There is something really special about a position such as this one. The fact that it is fifty per cent at a university and fifty per cent at a company offers a unique blend of theory and practice that will definitely benefit both organisations.”
Dennis Prak, Assistant Professor, Industrial Engineering and Business Information Systems, UT
Interested in contributing to research and consulting at KLM, while also teaching at UT?
Then this position is the perfect fit for you!
“The High-Tech Business and Entrepreneurship (HBE) team is very international and diverse. I immediately felt welcomed. It offers the perfect working environment. And the equal share of research and teaching tasks is ideal.”
Patricia Rogetzer, Assistant Professor, High-Tech Business and Entrepreneurship (HBE) Group, UT