[Comp-neuro] PhD position in Insect-Inspired AI at Edinburgh

Barbara Webb bwebb at inf.ed.ac.uk
Mon Oct 19 20:34:18 CEST 2020

The Insect Robotics lab at the University of Edinburgh, led by Professor 
Barbara Webb, has a fully-funded PhD studentship (3 years fees and 
stipend) available to study 'Insect-Inspired AI'. The position could 
commence any time from now.

The project will develop an alternative architecture for intelligent 
autonomous systems based on the insect brain. Insects are hugely 
successful at a number of tasks that are still major challenges for 
artificial intelligence, including rapid learning from minimal data and 
sophisticated navigation and robust coordination of behaviour in dynamic 
environments. The focus of the work will be to obtain a functional 
understanding of the computations occurring in the insect ‘mushroom body’ 
(MB) neuropil. Specifically, the PhD topic is to understand how the input 
and output organisation of the MB support adaptive and context dependent 
associative learning of complex sensory patterns for the control of 
behaviour. This will be applied to robot navigation tasks.

A suitable candidate would have a strong first degree in computing, maths 
or engineering; ideally with some background in computational 
neuroscience, neuromorphic computing, robotics or similar topics; and a 
strong interest in obtaining biological understanding of brain mechanisms 
for control of behaviour.

Interested candidates should in the first instance contact Professor 
Barbara Webb <B.Webb at ed.ac.uk>.

More details about graduate study at the 
School of Informatics and the formal application process can be found 
here: https://www.ed.ac.uk/informatics/postgraduate/research-degrees
The University of Edinburgh is a charitable body, registered in
Scotland, with registration number SC005336.

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