Systems Research NYC

Systems Research NYC

The Systems research group in NYC investigates a wide variety of topics within distributed systems, operating systems, and networking, as well as the theory relevant to these areas. In addition to “traditional” systems research, we also engage in deep collaborations with other research groups in the NYC lab, including world experts in machine learning, computational social science, and economics.

We are passionate about building principled systems: we study the algorithmic and data structural questions that arise during system creation, and incorporate these results into our work. We are equally passionate about interdisciplinary research: our cross-group collaborations have led to multiple tech transfers with product groups, resulting in real business impact. In all of our work, a top priority is to publish at the best academic conferences and journals, in systems and beyond.

We are a new group and are actively hiring. We typically have one postdoc position open each year, in addition to summer (and non-summer) internships. Please see our call for postdocs below (start date: July 2018).

Postdoc Position

Call for Postdocs

Deadline for Full Consideration: December 21, 2017

Microsoft Research NYC seeks outstanding applicants for a postdoc in the area of systems.

Microsoft Research offers an exhilarating and thriving environment for cutting-edge, multidisciplinary research, both theoretical and applied, with access to an extraordinary diversity of big and small data sources, an open publications policy, and close links to top academic institutions around the world. We seek applicants from all areas of systems with a passion and demonstrated ability for independent research, including a strong publication record at top research venues. The start date for this position is on or after July 2018.

Microsoft Research New York City is the most recent MSR lab, comprising thirty full-time researchers and postdocs working in machine learning, computational social science, algorithmic economics, information retrieval, social media, and recently, systems. The lab is highly collaborative and interdisciplinary, and is actively engaged with the local academic and tech communities. The systems research group at MSR NYC investigates a wide variety of topics within distributed systems, operating systems, and networking, as well as the theory relevant to these areas. Examples of “traditional” systems project topics include: distributed storage and indexing, scalable abstractions for multicore machines, end-to-end caching algorithms, video streaming, replication and fault tolerance protocols, and others.

We also engage in deep collaborations with other research groups in the NYC lab. Examples of cross-group projects include:

  • Systems + Machine Learning: We are building a Decision Service that enables any service to make optimal contextual decisions of any kind, such as which news articles to show to a user or how long to wait for an unresponsive VM. Our engine creates a fully-automated loop of randomized experimentation, data collection, learning, and deployment, and arrives at optimal decisions exponentially faster than the state-of-the-art. We have deployed the Decision Service in several product groups, including MSN, Azure Front Door (our edge proxy), and customer support calls, as well as in external companies like Complex and TrackRevenue.
  • Systems + Computational Social Science: We are building a real-time social analytics engine for answering complex queries about live social media streams like the Twitter firehose and Facebook newsfeeds. For example, we are using the engine to detect “viral” stories, or stories that exhibit structural diffusion that goes beyond the simple “popularity” counts reported by websites today. We are working closely with the Bing Social team to surface these results on Bing home and search pages.

We are passionate about building principled systems: we study the algorithmic and data structural questions that arise during system creation, and incorporate these results into our work. We are also passionate about interdisciplinary research: our cross-group collaborations have led to multiple tech transfers with product groups, resulting in real business impact. In all of our work, a top priority is to publish at the best academic conferences and journals, in systems and beyond.

Some of the above work represents collaborations with other research labs and with nearby universities such as Princeton, Columbia, NYU, and Yale. For a list of recent publications, please see the MSR NYC Systems Research website.

Postdoc Opportunities

Postdoc researcher positions provide an opportunity to develop your research career and to interact with some of the top minds in the research community, with the potential to have your research realized in products and services that will be used world-wide. Postdoc researchers are invited to define their own research agenda and demonstrate their ability to drive forward an effective program of research.

Successful candidates will have a strong academic record and strong publications in conferences or journals. Applicants must have completed the requirements for a PhD, including submission of their thesis, prior to joining Microsoft Research. Postdocs are typically hired for a one or two-year term appointment following the academic calendar, starting on or after July. Postdocs receive a competitive salary and benefits package, and are eligible for relocation expenses. Applicants with tenure-track offers from other institutions will be considered, provided they are able to negotiate deferring their start date to accept our position.

How to apply

To apply, submit an online application on the Microsoft Research Careers website any time after October 1, 2017. For full consideration, all materials, including reference letters, need to be received by December 21, 2017. In completing your application, please be sure to follow these additional instructions:

  1. In addition to the CV and names of three referees (including your dissertation advisor) that the online application will require you to include, please upload the following three attachments with your application:
    • two or three conference or journal articles, book chapters, or equivalent writing samples;
    • an academic research statement (approximately 3-4 pages) that outlines your research achievements and agenda.
  2. Indicate that your research area of interest is “Computer Systems and Networking” and that your location preference is “New York”. Include “Siddhartha Sen” as the name of a Microsoft Research contact (you may include additional contacts as well). Note: If you do not mark these preferences, it is very unlikely that we will receive your application.

After you submit your application, a request for letters will be sent to your list of referees on your behalf. Note: The application system will not request reference letters until after you have submitted your application. Please alert your letter writers in advance so that they will be ready to submit your letter by our application deadline of December 21, 2017. You can check the progress on individual reference requests by clicking the status tab within your application page.

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