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AI for the study of Environmental Risks (AI4ER)

EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in the Application of Artificial Intelligence to the study of Environmental Risks (AI4ER)

Climate change is the defining issue of our time and Artificial Intelligence (AI) is one of the most powerful tools at our disposal to combat it. Students in the AI4ER CDT will be embedded in the outstanding research environments of the University of Cambridge and the British Antarctic Survey, and will learn both the scientific foundations and the practical skills that will help them address problems arising from climate change. Students will apply leading edge computational approaches to address critical global environmental challenges by exploiting vast, diverse and often currently untapped environmental data sets.

Example PhD projects in the CDT include:

  • Using cutting-edge AI techniques to model both weather and climate
  • Identifying changes in land use from space-based observations
  • Modelling changes in rainfall in mountainous regions due to climate change

The programme consists of a one-year Master of Research (MRes) course, which includes two terms of formal teaching in the form of lectures, practicals and a team challenge, as well as a three-month research project.

On successful completion of the MRes, students will typically join a three-year PhD research project closely supervised by faculty in one of 13 constituent departments or the British Antarctic Survey.

AI for the study of Environmental Risks (AI4ER)

Eligibility criteria

Applicants must hold a 2.1 or higher in any of the following subjects:

  • Natural sciences (e.g. physics, chemistry, earth sciences, biology)
  • Engineering
  • Computer science
  • Mathematics

Those who hold undergraduate degrees from non-UK institutions can check the required equivalency here.

Ideal candidates will have some practical experience in applying machine learning/AI to an environmental problem, however the ability to show an understanding of this topic, within the application form, will also be considered i.e. a statement that indicates an interest in environmental risk must be supported by how AI can help with the problem.

Funding

We are able to provide full funding for up to 6 UK residents and a select handful of students from the EU and overseas. Please refer to our website for further details.

In addition, two fully-funded studentships linked to projects on algorithmically quantifying and certifying the carbon offset and biodiversity value of nature-based solutions are available via the Cambridge Centre for Carbon Credits (4C). Interested students are encouraged to reach out to 4C faculty to identify potential areas of research overlap.

How to apply

Applications can be submitted online from 15 September via the University of Cambridge Postgraduate Course Directory page and searching for AI4ER. As part of the application you will need to submit a statement of interest plus answer some specific questions (details can be found on the ‘How to Apply’ pages of our website). The deadline for applications is 5 January 2023.

Applicants should ensure that they review our website prior to applying to ensure they have a thorough understanding of the programme and its aims and objectives.

We strongly encourage applications from under-represented groups.


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