PhD Studentship: Next Generation Machine Learning for Data Analysis

University of Southampton
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Job Description

We are seeking highly qualified candidates for doctoral positions on the research of Machine Learning (ML).

We are looking for a MSc in applied mathematics, computer science, operations research, statistics, engineering, mathematics, or a related discipline with strong theoretical training.

The project focuses on the theory, algorithms and applications for ML based on generalised nonconvex low-rank models. The goals include designing faster algorithm, understanding the working principle behind ML, applying ML to solve application problems.

This research is a mathematics-heavy project, it is not just about applying method X on data Y. You are expected to learn, understand, and develop theory to prove that why method X will work, when will method X work and how fast will method X converge.

You will have the flexibility to choose a topic within the range of this project.

Area/ Topics:

  • Nonsmooth Nonconvex Optimisation
  • Optimisation on manifold
  • Analysis of optimisation algorithm by differential equations
  • Submodularity and Combinatorial Optimisation
  • Graph-theoretic machine learning
  • Numerical Analysis / Numerical Linear Algebra
  • Tensor-based signal processing
  • Optimal transport for machine learning
  • Foundation of machine learning via Clifford-Grassmann algebra
  • Foundation of machine learning via Subtropical algebra

What we offer

  • High quality training to do theoretical machine learning
  • Exciting theoretical research topics
  • Flexible research environment


  • good mathematical skills
  • good programming skills in a numerical language (such as MATLAB, Python, or Julia)

Desirable skills

  • good communications skills, both written and oral, in English

Before you make a decision, go to for more information, and contact Andersen Ang to discuss any details of the project.

Entry Requirements

A very good undergraduate degree (at least a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent). Evidence of good mathematical skills

Closing date: Applications will be considered in the order that they are received, the position will be considered filled when a suitable candidate has been identified.

Funding: We offer a range of funding opportunities for both UK and international students, including Bursaries and Scholarships. For more information please visit PhD Scholarships | Doctoral College | University of Southampton Funding will be awarded on a rolling basis, so apply early for the best opportunity to be considered.

How To Apply

Apply online: Search for a Postgraduate Programme of Study ( Select programme type (Research), 2024/25, Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, next page select “PhD Computer Science (Full time)”. In Section 2 of the application form you should insert the name of the supervisor Dr Andersen Ang

Applications should include:

Research Proposal

Curriculum Vitae

Two reference letters

Degree Transcripts/Certificates to date

For further information please contact:

The University of Southampton is committed to promoting equality, diversity, and inclusivity as demonstrated by our Athena SWAN award. We welcome all applicants regardless of their gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation or age, and will give full consideration to applicants seeking to study part time. The University of Southampton takes personal circumstances into account, has onsite childcare facilities, is committed to sustainability and has been awarded the Platinum EcoAward.

Company Info.

University of Southampton

The University of Southampton, situated in Southampton, England, stands as a distinguished public research institution and a founding member of the esteemed Russell Group of research-driven universities in the United Kingdom. Spanning seven campuses, its primary location lies within the Highfield area of Southampton. This hub is complemented by four additional campuses within the city: Avenue Campus, home to the School of Humanities; the Natio

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