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PhD position : Impacts and social issues of quantum science and its applications: a proposed framework for responsible innovation (M/F)

This offer is available in the following languages:
Français - Anglais

Date Limite Candidature : mercredi 28 juillet 2021

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General information

Reference : FR3391-AMEFAV-001
Date of publication : Wednesday, July 7, 2021
Scientific Responsible name : Isabelle Lacroix et Amélie FAVREAU
Type of Contract : PhD Student contract / Thesis offer
Contract Period : 36 months
Start date of the thesis : 1 October 2021
Proportion of work : Full time
Remuneration : 2 135,00 € gross monthly

Description of the thesis topic

Quantum science is now at a turning point where prototypes of disruptive quantum technologies have been demonstrated in the laboratory and are emerging in commercial applications. As for the emerging technologies of the last twenty years (GMOs, nanotechnologies, AI), the consideration of the ethical and social stakes and impacts, at the same time as the development of science and applications, seems to be essential today, in order to better consider and frame the linkage of these developments to societies, which are themselves in motion (carrying major challenges such as climate change, etc.). Accompanying the development of quantum science by doctoral work in SHS will allow to anticipate the benefits and risks, and to bring out the key social and ethical issues. The following tasks are to be accomplished:
Establish a state of the art of quantum science and its applied fields.
Identify the actors and stakeholders within the complex network of quantum in ecosystems.
To bring out the ethical and social impacts and issues in order to define a framework for analyzing quantum innovation that integrates by design the SHS imperatives that promote responsible use. This last point will be the core of this work. The thesis work will be based on reflections proposing a responsible framework around other emerging technologies and will ensure that the accelerated development of quantum technologies is integrated into this logic of responsible uses and innovations.

Work Context

The International Laboratory LN2 (Nanosystems and Nanotechnologies Laboratory) has been developing research involving the human and social sciences for several years, through its "Impacts, Uses and Society" axis (https://www.usherbrooke.ca/ln2/fr/recherche/axe-impacts-usages-et-societe/). This research is involved in the analysis of technological development and their implementation in society (especially emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and quantum technologies). The laboratory is mixed, i.e. it is supported by both French (CNRS, UGA, INSA, ECL, etc.) and Quebec (University of Sherbrooke, Interdisciplinary Institute of Technological Innovation) supervisors. It is within this framework that we propose the topic of a PhD: "Impacts and social issues of quantum science and its applied domains: proposal of an analytical framework for responsible innovations". This is a co-tutored thesis (see conditions below). It is supported in France by the FR Innovacs (https://innovacs.univ-grenoble-alpes.fr/), and in Quebec by the UMI LN2.

Constraints and risks

Profile and requirements:
- Master's degree in philosophy or master's degree in political science or sociology, with a minimum average of 12/20.
- Strong interest in technological environments and taste for interdisciplinarity.
- Good adaptability and autonomy required.
- Financed doctorate. Travel to France and Quebec also covered as part of the doctorate. Thesis written in French.
- The registration is attached to the INNOVACS Research Facility. The first two years are spent in Quebec, at the University of Sherbrooke. The student will be admitted to the Department of Philosophy and Applied Ethics, via the doctoral pathway in applied ethics and politics (Université de Sherbrooke-UMI LN2). Required to take courses in Quebec (15 credits).

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