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Machine Learning Intern, Causal Representation

Recursion Pharmaceuticals

Recursion Pharmaceuticals

Software Engineering
Quebec City, QC, Canada
Posted on Thursday, May 11, 2023

Your work will change lives. Including your own.

The Impact You’ll Make

Recursion is transforming the drug discovery process by integrating automated cell biology assays, diverse data sets, and advanced analytics. We are seeking a research intern who is enthusiastic about discovering the potential of causal representation learning in the realm of industrialized drug discovery. As a research intern, you will help develop new causal representation learning techniques and assess their performance using Recursion's extensive cell imaging data. You will be working alongside a team of Machine Learning Research Scientists, contributing to the development of innovative learning algorithms that enable us to derive new biological insights from large-scale interventional datasets. In this role, you will:

  • Design and implement novel causal representation learning methods, taking into consideration the constraints on data generating processes defined by current 'omics technologies.
  • Implement and evaluate the performance of these methods using Recursion's 9 petabytes of data.
  • Develop robust evaluation techniques for assessing the quality of learned representations.

At Recursion, we are passionate about open science, and you will be encouraged to work towards publishing any noteworthy findings at top machine learning conferences (NeurIPS, ICML, ICLR, etc.). Join us at Recursion and become a part of a team that is redefining drug discovery through state-of-the-art technology and machine learning.


This position is based at our offices in Montreal, housed at Mila - Quebec AI Institute, the largest AI institute in the world. We prefer in-person collaboration, but will consider remote work for this position.

The Team You’ll Join

You will be joining the Emerging Machine Learning team in Montreal. This team works on developing the next generation of machine learning approaches for drug discovery.

The Experience You’ll Need

Any combination of the following experience will make you well-suited for the role:

  • Experience working on developing causal representation learning techniques or understanding the identifiability properties of existing representation learning techniques (e.g. nonlinear ICA, disentanglement via sparse perturbations / interventions, etc.).
  • Experience working with state of the art self- / unsupervised learning techniques such as SimCLR, CLIP, Masked Autoencoders, etc.
  • Any prior experience working at the intersection of biology and machine learning will be an advantage.

The Values That We Hope You Share:

  • We Care: We care about our drug candidates, our Recursionauts, their families, each other, our communities, the patients we aim to serve and their loved ones. We also care about our work.
  • We Learn: Learning from the diverse perspectives of our fellow Recursionauts, and from failure, is an essential part of how we make progress.
  • We Deliver: We are unapologetic that our expectations for delivery are extraordinarily high. There is urgency to our existence: we sprint at maximum engagement, making time and space to recover.
  • Act Boldly with Integrity: No company changes the world or reinvents an industry without being bold. It must be balanced; not by timidity, but by doing the right thing even when no one is looking.
  • We are One Recursion: We operate with a 'company first, team second' mentality. Our success comes from working as one interdisciplinary team.

Recursion spends time and energy connecting every aspect of work to these values. They aren’t static, but regularly discussed and questioned because we make decisions rooted in those values in our day-to-day work. You can read more about our values and how we live them every day here.

More About Recursion

Central to our mission is the Recursion Operating System, or Recursion OS, that combines an advanced infrastructure layer to generate what we believe is one of the world’s largest and fastest-growing proprietary biological and chemical datasets and the Recursion Map, a suite of custom software, algorithms, and machine learning tools that we use to explore foundational biology unconstrained by human bias and navigate to new biological insights which may accelerate our programs. We are a biotechnology company scaling more like a technology company. Recursion is proudly headquartered in Salt Lake City.

Learn more at, or connect on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Recursion is an Equal Opportunity Employer that values diversity and inclusion. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected under applicable federal, state, local, or provincial human rights legislation.