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Team Openings

We are currently accepting applications for researchers on a rolling basis. Please see the information below. We encourage you to apply sooner rather than later.

We also welcome brief expressions of interest for other roles that can strengthen our research and maximize our positive impact, which you can send to


This position offers a lot of flexibility with few requirements other than the production of high-quality research on moral circle expansion and digital minds. We are open to a variety of research methods: qualitative (e.g. historical case studies, interviews, conceptual analysis), quantitative (e.g. surveys, behavioral experiments, analysis of existing industry and survey data), or mixed methods. As of 2023, most of our research has been psychological experiments and surveys, so we are especially interested in projects more closely related to the fields of human-computer/robot/AI interaction and ‘macro’ social science (e.g., sociology, economics).

Research Topics

Our main research focus is digital minds: artificial intelligences (AIs) that are not merely intelligent in the sense of problem-solving ability, but have mental capacities such as experience and agency. We see this as an important, neglected, and tractable research area for ensuring future AI systems are safe and beneficial, and interest in it has grown significantly in recent months with ChatGPT, Bing AI, and other advances in large language models. Because this is such a new field, a lot of our research so far has been big-picture scoping and laying groundwork for future projects. Over the next few years, we hope to help build a robust body of theoretical and empirical digital minds literature. Our publications to date include:

At this time, we are particularly interested in work on human-computer/robot/AI interaction and ‘macro’ social science (e.g., sociology, economics) where we see important projects beyond the specializations of our current staff (primarily social and cognitive psychology). Overarching questions for the field of digital minds include:

When SI was founded in 2017, we were primarily focused on farmed animals as the frontier of humanity's moral circle. We continue to do some work on animal issues but don’t expect it to be a key focus for a 2023 hire. We expect our future research on animal issues to be similar to our previous research, most of which is listed on our Reports page.


We want all of our research to be thoroughly vetted and publically available, and we are open to various publication formats. Our previous publications have been white papers, working papers, academic journal articles, blog posts, newspaper and magazine articles, conference presentations, and a book. The best publication format depends partly on the content and audience of the work, as well as how we can support early-career researchers because some publication formats may be more useful for their professional development.

Specific Tasks and Duties

This is, in general, what our researchers work on:

More Information

Required Attributes

Preferred Attributes

We encourage you to apply even if you don't meet some or any of these:

Application Process

This is our plan for the application process, for your convenience:

Apply Now

Click here to apply to the Researcher position (Google Form).

Please note that the application form requires a Google account for uploads. If you do not have a Google account you may send your responses and materials to

Sentience Institute is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive equal consideration for employment regardless of their race, color, religion, age, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, or veteran status.

Please contact with any questions. We know job applications can take a lot of time, and we will do our best to be considerate of your schedule throughout our hiring process.

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