Invitation to participate in Centre for Doctoral Training in Multi-Modal Imaging and Inclusive AI

Message from the University of St Andrews:

We would like to invite members of the Tay Cities Clean Growth platform to participate in our PhD placement scheme. We hope that our programme could be highly synergistic with the strategic aims of your business, as AI is now integrating into the business landscape across all sectors.

At the University of St Andrews, we like to think creatively about how to train the next generation of scientists to tackle tough problems. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is reshaping a world where we are bombarded with images of all types and sizes and speeds. I am highlighting that a team of scientists lead by Prof. Vivienne Wild is currently preparing a proposal that would create a Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in AI. Our CDT would fund 60-70 PhD students over 8 years to deploy AI to grapple with complex imaging data, while also pioneering ways to increase inclusivity and sustainability in the field of AI. An outline of our project entitled UKRI AI CDT in multi-dimensional imaging: inclusive AI for the Arts and Sciences is attached. A link to the scheme is here:

We hope to strengthen our bid by speaking with organisations who might consider fully or partially funding PhD students. We are hoping to get letters of support for a funding application from businesses that might be interested in a PhD placements.

We are specifically looking for partners who can host 3-month internships, support widening participation programmes, and fund and/or co-supervise PhD students.

Our community-led interdisciplinary CDT will be built with principles of inclusion and social responsibility at our roots,
with a key goal of widening participation in AI both by students and supervisors. We have two widening participation programmes at undergraduate and postgraduate level, to boost the skills and confidence of students under-represented in the AI industries. Our students will receive core training in AI-based image analysis, then spend 3.5 years embedded in
centres for research and teaching excellence in St Andrews, working alongside recognised experts to develop a deep
understanding of the full data cycle from collection through analysis and dissemination.

The training programme will facilitate the sharing of knowledge between traditional academic silos: students will learn how related techniques can be applied across different domains, from science to medicine to arts, but also appreciate how to integrate domain-specific knowledge to avoid common AI pitfalls such as over-fitting or extrapolation. Our widening participation programme will bring students from diverse academic and social backgrounds to the field of AI. We will empower all participants to take responsibility for the social and environmental implications of their work, understanding the potential for AI-based methods to be exclusive rather than inclusive, and help them learn how to minimise the environmental costs of massive computational analyses.

Perhaps you have a dataset (not necessarily imaging!) that you would love to have analysed for you? Perhaps your organisation would like to better understand how AI will affect you and your community in the future? Perhaps you want to employ our students post-PhD?

We are looking for industry, public sector, charities, international partners and individuals to:

  • Provide 3-month placement opportunities for our students, allowing them to gain transferrable skills for careers beyond academia, or international experience to broaden their horizons. These placements need not be related to “multi-dimensional imaging”, but could be in education, policy etc. (student placements can be fully-funded by the CDT);
  • Co-fund Widening Participation programmes for underrepresented groups
  • Co-fund, fully fund and/or co-supervise PhD students on AI applications to multi-dimensional imaging datasets of mutual interest.

If you are interested in being involved, please contact the P.I., Prof. Vivienne Wild ( or our external partners liaisons Prof. Andrea di Falco ( and Dr. Stefan Pulver ( and we will be delighted to discuss any opportunities further.