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PhD Studentship Opportunity in Creative Intelligence: Unsupervised Representation Learning for Computational Creativity

University of Surrey

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Guildford
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: £20,000
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 6th June 2019
Closes: 15th July 2019

Studentship description

The Centre for Vision Speech and Signal Processing (CVSSP) seeks applications from high quality students for a studentship co-supervised with Adobe Research, California, on the topic of AI and Computational Creativity exploring topics in unsupervised representation learning using deep neural networks. The student will be based at CVSSP in the UK with opportunity for internship and travel to Adobe in the Bay Area during the project. 

By joining CVSSP you will be accessing the newly formed Centre for Doctoral Training in Audio-Visual Machine Perception (CDT-AVMP) at the University of Surrey. The CDT-AVMP offers an enhanced 3.5 year doctoral training programme to address industry demand for individuals with cross-disciplinary scientific expertise in AI and Machine Perception, working in teams with integrated professional skills in software, project management, innovation and understanding of ethics and regulation of AI and data science research. 

The project will investigate unsupervised and self-supervised methods to learn computational models of creativity from large volumes of digital creative work. The PhD will focus upon developing new deep learning techniques to understand and synthesize many forms of creative output, including digital artwork, user experiences (e.g. UI layouts). It will explore how these models could be incorporated into AI-enabled tools, and designers can co-create with those tools in closed loop to enhance their creative process. 

The project will explore learning disentangled representations of content structure and style via self-supervised networks, and generative models for in-flow design recommendations to help guide novice designers or apply stylistic transformations to designs. 

Adobe will be closely involved in the supervision of this project and opportunities exist for internship and travel to Adobe HQ in Silicon Valley during the project. 

This project will begin on the 1st October 2019. 

Entry requirements

  • A first class or 2:1 honours degree (or equivalent overseas qualification) in an appropriate discipline (e.g. engineering, computer science, signal processing, applied mathematics, and physics). 
  • You should be able to demonstrate excellent mathematical, analytic, programming skills. 
  • Previous experience in computer vision, machine/deep learning, or augmented reality would be advantageous. 


Funding will provide an annual tax-free stipend of approximately £20,000 and coverage of the home/EU tuition fees for 3.5 years. Based at Surrey. Opportunity for internship and travel to Adobe in the Bay Area.

How to apply

Applicants should apply through our PhD course page Please clearly state the studentship title in your application. 
For enquiries contact Dr John Collomosse ( indicating your areas of interest and including your CV with qualification details (copies of transcripts and certificates).

Application enquiries

Professor John Collomosse, 01483 686035

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