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Principal Investigator & Team Lead, IBM

Teodora Sandra Buda

Job title
Principal Investigator & Team Lead
Computer Science
8 Years
  1. PhD in Computer Science, University College Dublin
Favourite subjects in school
Maths and Physics
The best thing about my job
The diversity of potential activities enable me to explore and learn something new every day. The competitive, fast paced dynamics of my work also intrigues me.

It requires hard work and dedication, added to the ambition and perseverance of being always up to speed and date with ongoing technologies.]

My Main Tasks

- Researching and developing new Machine Learning approaches, some leveraging Deep Learning, such as for anomaly detection & time series forecasting. 

- Planning various projects strategies, defining end goals, and working to build coherent plans for projects within our group.  

- Task management across multiple projects, evaluating outputs, and managing the associated roadmaps.  

- Help define new and future technical core contributions within future projects targeting new areas of artificial intelligence and machine learning.

- Prepare and review documents such as deliverables for ongoing projects and proposals for potential future projects

- Prepare and review scientific publications & attend conferences, ensuring upskilling in the domain and be up to date with ongoing trends and state of the art.


Sometimes it can be challenging to keep up with the dynamicity and pace that technology moves at. Once on this career path you need to be constantly up to date with the newest developments. In my role, your eagerness to learn can be as important as the number of years of experience you have.

Who Influenced Me

I have always been fascinated by science, solving problems and study. Lots of assignments requiring the ability to solve math and physics problems guided me towards this career direction as well, and I enjoy reading and learning in general. In addition, my parents had a great role in mentoring me in my choice as they observed what I was best at in school with an external eye.

Work/Life Balance

Yes in general, though I don’t see my work or job as something separate from my life, that I need to do strictly from 9 to 5, and that doesn’t bring me joy. Hence sometimes it’s difficult to stop because you are eager to do more.

Most Useful Aspects of my Education 

My PhD research was conducted in collaboration with industry, hence I was able to interact with Software Engineers, address real problems in my research, and make contacts for future employment opportunities. Beyond my PhD, I was always interested in travelling and hence sought internships and exchange opportunities, such as AIESEC internship in Brazil, ERASMUS exchange during my undergrad in Spain, Odysseus internship in Ireland and BEST summer school in Poland.

Useful Work Experience

Research internships/fellowships (both in academia and industry). Placements during summer holidays.

Top Tip!

Pick a college that has this type of internships, exchange opportunities, or placements available, not just in industry and local, but worldwide as well, as it can have a huge beneficial impact on your practical work experience but also on your life as it opens your mind.