Full time/ fully funded PhD Studentship in Adaptive Thermal Comfort

We’re looking for outstanding computer-scientist, environmental scientist or human-geographer with a passion for promoting environmental sustainability and commercial innovation to join our group!  Funding for 3 years, commencing October 2017. Deadline 29th May 2017.

Energy used for heating represents over 50% of domestic energy use in UK, and has increased by 1/3rd in the past 40 years.  To respond to our climate change commitments, we must radically reduce the amount of energy associated with heating and cooling buildings.  Current systems do not work in harmony with outdoor temperatures, and are not responsive to occupants or the actual use of indoor space.

This PhD studentship represents a unique opportunity to systematically explore an entirely different approach to controlling indoor temperature based on fine-grained sensing and control.  We will be creating experimental testbeds, innovative control and UI systems and working with stakeholders on an entire building scale, to explore this issue ‘in situ’.

The system will be co-created and evaluated in a unique multidisciplinary research-industry collaboration across School of Computing & Communications (pervasive systems), Lancaster Environment Centre (social-geography), Hardy & Ellis Inventions Ltd (H&E), and Lancaster University facilities.

We thus welcome applications for individuals who are enthusiastic about working as part of a multidisciplinary team and making a difference. We are open to:

  1. Computer Science (software/systems): algorithms and ubicomp systems to enable adaptive indoor temperatures in response to internal/external factors;
  2. Computer Science (HCI): new user interfaces/ HCI for stimulating cultural change (encouraging active participation) to achieve comfort in partnership with the new system;
  3. Environmental Science/ Human-Geography: understanding the spatial and temporal changes in the use of space and comfort practices that result.

Depending on background, applicants should be numerate and possess effective written and verbal communication skills.  Good programming, numerical modelling, data analysis, HCI/user-studies, spatial/GIS, qualitative analysis skills, an advantage. There is flexibility for the research to follow the candidate’s emerging areas of interest.  It is not expected that candidates will already possess the complete skill-set required to conduct this research, but they must demonstrate a willingness to learn and to collaborate with others.

EU/UK graduate tuition fees are fully funded at £15,000/year, non-EU/UK graduate fees are subsidised from £17,510/year to £13,315/year (they need to provide evidence of how they plan to meet the shortfall at application). Tuition is fully funded at £4195. International students must clarify how they will cover the £13,315.

Please make informal contact to Prof. Adrian Friday or Dr. Mike Hazas, ideally sending a CV to discuss possible research directions and your suitability.

Full time/ fully funded PhD Studentship in Computing for Sustainability

We’re looking for outstanding students with a passion for exploring how computing can promote environmental sustainability to join our group! Funding for up to 3.5 years, commencing October 2017. Deadline 29th May 2017.

Addressing major societal challenges including rising energy demand and resiliency in the face of environmental change, will require massive transformations in how we use energy and resources.

The energy impacts of IT systems is increasingly significant to the planet, and these impacts are increasing exponentially. How can we understand and transform this energy footprint? Smart environments offer considerable potential for rethinking how and when energy is used to support everyday life. How can we shift and reshape energy demands in the home or be used to support better but lower energy ways of living?

We create innovative ubicomp systems to explore this problem experimentally with end-users. See examples from our previous published work studying energy impacts of IT in the home, network impacts of mobile devices, direct vs. indirect energy in cooking, and creating smarter environments for managing indoor temperature.

Our group draws on a multi-disciplinary literature, so we welcome applicants from computer science or a related area, with interests ranging from software systems (ubicomp), human-computer interaction (HCI), and data rich/ sensor systems (pervasive data science).

The studentship covers £14,475 annual stipend plus tuition fees at the Home/EU rate (currently £4,121). Overseas students are welcome to apply, but are to independently fund additional fees required.

Please make informal contact to Prof. Adrian Friday or Dr. Mike Hazas, ideally sending a CV to discuss possible research directions and your suitability.