Smart Cities Postdoctoral Associates (2021) – NYU Center for Urban Science and Progress (CUSP)


New York University’s Center for Urban Science and Progress (CUSP) is an interdisciplinary research center dedicated to the application of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in the service of urban communities across the globe. Using New York City as our laboratory and classroom, we strive to develop novel data- and technology-driven solutions for complex urban problems. CUSP’s research and educational initiatives seek to improve city services; optimize decision-making by local governments; create smart urban infrastructures; address challenging urban issues such as crime, environmental pollution and public health; and inspire urban citizens to improve their quality of life.

We seek postdoctoral researcher applicants with a strong academic record to join CUSP and advance the mission stated above. Successful applicants are expected to work on interdisciplinary projects that contribute to methods development and foundational knowledge in their core disciplines, as well as to novel data- and technology-driven applications. Applicants from groups that are traditionally underrepresented in STEM are strongly encouraged to apply, as are those with unconventional career paths and backgrounds who are eager to contribute to CUSP’s mission. Ideal candidates should meet the following criteria:

  • Evidence of, or strong interest in, conducting broad interdisciplinary research across physical and natural sciences, computer and data science, the social sciences, and/or engineering with urban and social progress applications.
  • Strong communication skills
  • Strong record of publication
  • Experience and/or interest in mentoring graduate and undergraduate students.
  • Record of, or interest in, activities to engage underrepresented groups in the field
  • Interest in grant writing and establishing a record of externally funded research
  • Outreach experience (with stakeholders, city agencies, community) and transitioning research into practice is encouraged, but not required.

Applicants must identify at least two CUSP affiliated faculty members ( who would serve as mentors; proposed research must span areas of expertise. Successful applicants will be expected to start new projects and collaborations and/or engage in existing projects with sponsoring faculty. We encourage applications in a wide range of areas of specialization, including but not limited to:

  • Urban machine learning, data science, and AI (e.g., computer vision, photogrammetry, remote sensing)
  • Robotics with potential urban applications (e.g., autonomous transportation, automation in urban areas, urban navigation and mobility, infrastructure management, human-robot interaction)
  • Smart mobility and emerging transportation safety solutions
  • Cyber-security and privacy in smart cities and critical infrastructure (e.g., communication, energy and transportation systems)
  • Improving city and urban infrastructure operations and governance through data and multimedia technology (including data management, curation, integration, AR/VR, visualization, and analytics)
  • The intersection of urban infrastructure systems and technology with social justice, environmental justice, and equity
  • Environmental sensing/sensor development for urban applications; urban Internet of Things
  • Data analytics for environmental engineering design and decision making in urban environments (e.g., water/wastewater quality and infrastructure, air quality, energy and climate, sustainability)
  • Smart infrastructure modeling and operations (e.g., sensing, energy efficiency, 3D modeling and data analytics)
  • Smart and connected health
  • Resilience of urban centers to natural hazards (earthquakes, hurricanes, wildfires, pandemics), including climate change mitigation and adaptation
  • Additional topics at the intersection between these and other relevant areas of research in the smart cities and urban science domains.

Smart Cities Postdoctoral Associates are full-time, non-tenured positions for two years, with annual appointments renewed based on satisfactory performance. The positions will be based at CUSP’s state of the art facility in Brooklyn. The starting salary is $75k/year with competitive benefits, plus funds for travel and professional development. The tentative start date is September 1, 2021.

Responsibilities: Conduct groundbreaking research both independently and as part of interdisciplinary teams; contribute to existing projects under the supervision of sponsoring faculty, and start new projects and research collaborations as appropriate; participate in the development of funded research proposals; build bridges between CUSP and other Tandon/NYU labs, groups, and centers; publish in top venues in smart cities, urban science, and/or their fields of specialization; contribute to scholarly life at CUSP through the organization of seminars, mentoring of students and other service; and teach (or co-teach) one course per academic year.


Doctoral degree in a relevant field, and an active agenda of research and publication with a strong focus on data or computing, smart cities, urban science and infrastructure, or other areas with potential for direct application to cities. See above for additional qualifications.

Application Instructions

Applicants should submit the following as part of the application package:

  • Curriculum vitae
  • Personal statement (no longer than two pages): this document should provide an overview of your work, and outline previous academic contributions to your field, your experience or promise for interdisciplinary research, mentoring experience/interest, and include a statement on your commitment to diversity.
  • Statement of research interests (no longer than two pages): the statement of research interests should include the names of two or more CUSP-affiliated faculty who would have substantial intellectual overlap with the applicant’s interests and likely program of research, and can act as mentors/collaborators.
  • A figure illustrating the candidate’s past and envisioned research roadmap is encouraged in both statements.
  • Contact information for two references; the search committee will reach out to recommendation letter writers at a later date.

Applications received by January 31st, 2021 will receive full consideration. Any questions may be directed to Yury Dvorkin (

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

For people in the EU, click here for information on your privacy rights under GDPR:

NYU is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is committed to a policy of equal treatment and opportunity in every aspect of its recruitment and hiring process without regard to age, alienage, caregiver status, childbirth, citizenship status, color, creed, disability, domestic violence victim status, ethnicity, familial status, gender and/or gender identity or expression, marital status, military status, national origin, parental status, partnership status, predisposing genetic characteristics, pregnancy, race, religion, reproductive health decision making, sex, sexual orientation, unemployment status, veteran status, or any other legally protected basis. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons of minority sexual orientation or gender identity, individuals with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply for vacant positions at all levels.

Sustainability Statement

NYU aims to be among the greenest urban campuses in the country and carbon neutral by 2040. Learn more at