go to top scroll for more


Projects: Projects for Investigator
Reference Number EP/Y030702/1
Title UKRI AI Centre for Doctoral Training in AI for Sustainability
Status Started
Energy Categories Energy Efficiency(Residential and commercial) 20%;
Energy Efficiency(Transport) 20%;
Not Energy Related 60%;
Research Types Training 100%
Science and Technology Fields PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS (Applied Mathematics) 10%;
PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS (Computer Science and Informatics) 50%;
ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Electrical and Electronic Engineering) 10%;
ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Mechanical, Aeronautical and Manufacturing Engineering) 10%;
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Professor EH Gerding

Sch of Electronics and Computer Sc
University of Southampton
Award Type Standard
Funding Source EPSRC
Start Date 01 April 2024
End Date 30 September 2032
Duration 102 months
Total Grant Value £8,787,058
Industrial Sectors Environment
Region South East
Programme Artificial Intelligence CDTs 2023 Call
Investigators Principal Investigator Professor EH Gerding , Sch of Electronics and Computer Sc, University of Southampton (99.991%)
  Other Investigator Dr A Nayak , Southampton Business Schoo, University of Southampton (0.001%)
Dr HF Calvo-Pardo , Sch of Economic, Social & Political Sci, University of Southampton (0.001%)
Professor SD Ahipasaoglu , Sch of Mathematical Sciences, University of Southampton (0.001%)
Dr L Armstrong , Sch of Engineering, University of Southampton (0.001%)
Dr S Gauthier , Sch of Engineering, University of Southampton (0.001%)
Dr S Stein , Sch of Electronics and Computer Sc, University of Southampton (0.001%)
Dr D Georgiadou , Sch of Electronics and Computer Sc, University of Southampton (0.001%)
Dr R Pau , Sch of Electronics and Computer Sc, University of Southampton (0.001%)
Dr V Yazdanpanah , Sch of Electronics and Computer Sc, University of Southampton (0.001%)
  Industrial Collaborator Project Contact , QinetiQ Ltd (0.000%)
Project Contact , National Oceanographic Centre, NERC (0.000%)
Project Contact , Jaguar Land Rover Limited (0.000%)
Project Contact , IMEC, Belgium (0.000%)
Project Contact , Shell International Ltd (0.000%)
Project Contact , Embecosm Limited (0.000%)
Project Contact , Senseye Limited (0.000%)
Project Contact , Airbus SAS, France (0.000%)
Project Contact , UK Green Building Council (0.000%)
Project Contact , Thales UK Limited (0.000%)
Project Contact , NquiringMinds Ltd (0.000%)
Project Contact , Connected Places Catapult (0.000%)
Project Contact , Pragmatic Semiconductor Limited (0.000%)
Project Contact , Mind Foundry Ltd (0.000%)
Project Contact , Absolar Solutions (0.000%)
Project Contact , Ada Mode (0.000%)
Project Contact , Amazon Web Services EMEA SARL (0.000%)
Project Contact , Appriss Retail (0.000%)
Project Contact , Basck (0.000%)
Project Contact , Empati Limited (0.000%)
Project Contact , Gemeente Amsterdam (0.000%)
Project Contact , Good Energy (0.000%)
Project Contact , Intellium AI (0.000%)
Project Contact , M&G Real Estate (0.000%)
Project Contact , Maritime UK Solent Limited (0.000%)
Project Contact , Solar Americas Capital (0.000%)
Project Contact , Southend-on-Sea Borough Council (0.000%)
Project Contact , The Environment Centre tEC (0.000%)
Project Contact , The Solent Cluster (0.000%)
Web Site
Abstract Environmental sustainability is one of the greatest challenges the world is facing, with many organisations and countries including the UK setting ambitious targets to reduce emissions and waste and increase renewable energy production. Technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) are seen as a key enabler to achieve these targets. This CDT will address this need by training future leaders in the application of AI to engineer a more environmentally sustainable future. Crucially, the students will not only have a fundamental understanding of AI, but they will also be able to identify the opportunities where sustainability challenges can be addressed using these tools, as well as understanding the business and social implications and needs. Stakeholder meetings and follow-up surveys have identified this type of system-level thinking as one of the key training requirements besides technical ability. Indeed, without considering People, Profit, and Planet together, solutions are unlikely to be adopted on a wide scale. Further to that, our unique selling point is that students will be trained with a view to directly respond to industry and societal challenges identified from our pool of 30 non-academic stakeholders which we will continuously refresh and grow.Together with our network of stakeholders, we have identified 5 themes as the focus for the research: (1) Sustainable Operations and Circular Economy, (2) Sustainable Transport and Logistics, (3) Energy and Buildings, (4) AI for Biodiversity and (5) Sustainable AI. The first 4 deal with specific application areas where AI can improve environmental sustainability. For example, AI can be used to make transport more efficient including shipping and realise targets for net zero. AI can also be used to better manage energy use and production e.g. through intelligent electric vehicle charging and decentralised energy markets. Theme 5 deals with hardware, software, and social/business solutions to deal with the sustainability of AI itself. For example, ChatGPT-v3 is estimated to have cost an equivalent of over 550 tons of CO2 to train. This can be addressed by building low-powered hardware and algorithms, and understanding the quality/cost trade-offs. Interdisciplinary projects and projects that span multiple themes are particularly encouraged.Alongside AI, sustainability is a core theme of our training, which has a range of sustainability-themed cohort activities, including innovation camps, hackathons and outreach activities, as well as regular team exercises where sustainability practices in organisations are scrutinised, re-scoped and improved. The aim is to produce a sustainability mindset whilst creating a collaborative team spirit and have an immediate impact in the operations within organisations. In addition, equality, diversity and inclusion principles are embedded throughout the CDT, from recruitment activities, to training of the management and supervisory team, as well as accommodatingstudents with diverse backgrounds through a flexible training approach. Throughout, responsible research and innovation will be at the forefront and integrated within the training. This will be enhanced by our close collaboration with the Responsible AI (RAI) UK centre.Whilst there are bespoke compulsory modules, a range of optional modules from 3 different faculties are offered to supplement any gaps in knowledge depending on the chosen topic of research. These range from technical subjects such as machine learning and embedded devices to economics and supply chain management. In addition, an extensive range of online and short training workshops will be available throughout the CDT, from software carpentries for data analysis to training around policy (e.g., how to engage with government and writing policy documents) and commercialisation. These training and cohort-building activities provide students with more than a PhD, and significantly enhance their employability.
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 17/04/24