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PhD Studentship in Developing machine learning strategies for the forecasting of disease and vice incidence in pigs

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  • Full or part time
    Prof I Kyriazakis
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Number of awards:

Start date and duration:
23 September 2019 for 4 years.

Newcastle University is offering a unique studentship opportunity to join an interdisciplinary team with world class reputation in the area of precision and digital farming.

The western world has ever-increasing needs for cheap and safe food sources and, hence, enhancing livestock efficiency in farms, while ensuring adequate well-being conditions for animals becomes crucial. Machine learning algorithms are key to develop innovative analytical approaches to inform better management decisions in agricultural systems.

This studentship will develop approaches based on machine learning (ML) and predictive analytics to forecast production trends and the incidence of disease and vice (e.g. tail biting) in pigs. Through the partnership with AHDB we will have access to high value pig industry datasets, and the studentship will investigate innovative strategies on processing this wealth of data with ML to extract knowledge that can inform farm management and policy.

The studentship requires highly motivated candidates interested in applying their computing/mathematical skills to a real-life problem that will improve the health and welfare of animals.

Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) (

Name of supervisor(s):
Professor Ilias Kyriazakis ( and Dr Jaume Bacardit

Eligibility Criteria
The successful applicant will have a minimum of an upper second class UK honours degree, or equivalent, in computing science, mathematics, applied mathematics, statistics or related disciplines, and preferably an MSc degree in the same or similar areas. Applicants with a degree related to data science are particularly encouraged.

The award is available only to UK or EU/EAA nationals who have three years’ residence in the UK prior to the date of the start of the award.

How to apply:
You must apply through the University’s online postgraduate application system. To do this please ‘Create a new account’

All relevant fields should be completed, but fields marked with a red asterisk in the application portal must to be completed. The following information will help us to process your application.

You will need to:

insert the programme code 8010F in the programme of study section
select PhD in Agriculture and Rural Development (FT) – Animal Science as the programme of study
insert the studentship code NES014 in the studentship/partnership reference field
attach a covering letter and CV. The covering letter must state the title of the studentship, quote reference code NES014 and state how your interests and experience relate to the project
attach degree transcripts and certificates and, if English is not your first language, a copy of your English language qualifications.

Funding Notes

100% of UK/EU tuition fees paid and annual living expenses of £15,009 (full award).

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