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EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Robotics and Autonomous Systems

EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Robotics and Autonomous Systems

Heriot-Watt University and the University of Edinburgh are jointly offering an exciting opportunity to study a PhD through an innovative 4-year PhD training programme, drawing on our extensive experience with postgraduate teaching and research supervision in the area of Robotics and Autonomous Systems.

Robots have the potential to revolutionise the world's economy and society over the next twenty years, working for us, beside us and interacting with us. The Robotics and Autonomous Systems (RAS) area was highlighted by the UK Government in 2013 as one of the 8 Great Technologies that underpin the UK's Industrial Strategy for jobs and growth. The UK urgently needs graduates with the technical skills and industry awareness to create an innovation pipeline from academic research to global markets, in application areas including manufacturing, assistive/medical robots, offshore energy, environmental monitoring, search and rescue, defence, and support for the ageing population.

EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Robotics and Autonomous Systems

We are recruiting students who have, or expect to obtain, a 2i or higher in Engineering, Computer Science or related subjects such as Maths, Physics, Computational Linguistics. Applicants from a Psychology background with a strong technical background and/or experience in statistical research methods are also welcome.

EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Robotics and Autonomous Systems

Year one comprises a taught element aimed at filling in gaps in knowledge that you may need for your PhD and providing you with foundation skills in research for RAS. With your supervisor, you will agree a flexible Technical Learning Portfolio based on your proposed research area, your current knowledge and previous education. You are expected to spend approximately 50% of your time on taught courses and 50% exploring your PhD topic, reading papers and conducting a literature review, which will go in your first-year report.

During year two, you will focus on your PhD but there will be a Group Project based on a real-world problem, as well as prestigious speaker and personal development events and courses (#Cauldron). The goal of the group project is to promote and encourage cross-disciplinary and co-creation approaches to working.

In year three, you have the possibility of an international placement with industry or an academic Project Partner, to expose you to different working environments and cultures, scientific excellence and broaden your horizons and employment opportunities.

Year 4 will focus on finishing the PhD but also includes further training on innovation and industry-readiness and the opportunity to apply for funding to seed start-up ideas.

EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Robotics and Autonomous Systems

Why join us?

  • Flexible programme structure allows students to tailor courses to match research area of interest in year one, ensuring students have a strong general grounding in responsible research, current theory, methods and applications as a solid foundation for their PhD research.
  • Opportunity for international placement in prestigious research laboratory in year three.
  • Bespoke #Cauldron training programme to provide non-technical skills such as understanding of technology translation, creativity, and entrepreneurial processes.
  • Gateway seminars with prestigious speakers.
  • Fund to seed innovation.
  • Fully funded posts available for UK/EU students: limited posts for overseas students

In addition to the above, our cohort approach ensures students receive a warm welcome to the CDT with a bespoke induction event. Cohort building continues with a team-building weekend, mandatory attendance by year one students at our regular 'Gateway' seminars; group projects; and opportunities to participate in team challenges such as Amazon Alexa, and outreach activities such as the Edinburgh International Science Festival.

More information and how to apply: