Fully Funded PhD Studentship Information Storage and Retrieval / Natural Language Processing



The Department of Information Science and The National Archives (TNA) are jointly offering a fully-funded PhD studentship to UK/EU applicants. The UK/EU university tuition fee will be paid and recipients will also receive a tax-free stipend at the EPSRC standard rate (£13,726 for 2013/14). 

The National Archives (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/) in Kew is the UK government’s official archive, containing over 1,000 years of history, up to and including a unique archive of all government web sites consisting of over 1 billion web pages. It gives detailed guidance to government departments and the public sector on information management and advises others about the care of historical archives. It has a lead role in the wider archive and information profession, and is active in information research. 

The collection, management and access of email messages is becoming an increasingly urgent challenge in information research. Knowing what and where messages have been stored, who has done what to them, what is in them, which are important, what the relationships are between them and the wider patterns this reveals, are all crucial to the good storage and retrieval of digital information and decisions about whether they should be preserved. This exciting PhD topic will involve contributing to the area of Email Classification and Categorisation which will span a number of fields including Information Retrieval, Natural Language Processing, and Social Network Analysis.  

The Department of Information Science is looking to continue its track record in this area, as it currently holds the best f-measure score for retrieving knowledge key phrases from email messages. Further information can be found at: http://www.drthomasjackson.com/eke.html

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Applicants should have:

  • A first class honours or a good upper second class degree in computer science, information management, or a similar area.
  • Programming skills
  • Understanding of Information Retrieval and Information Management.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills.

The successful applicant will join the Department of Information Science, which has a thriving PhD community, and be supervised by Prof Tom Jackson and Professor Graham Mathews. Time will be spent at both Loughborough University and at The National Archives, as the datasets cannot leave The National Archives. The successful candidate will be required to gain appropriate UK government security clearance. 

How to Apply

You are required to apply for PhD research in the normal way, but also include a statement (no more than 500 words) on “The issues surrounding email classification and categorisation in a large organisation”. This could include, for example, the approaches you might take; the impact of these approaches on archived emails and emails sent in real time; legal aspects, etc. http://www.lboro.ac.uk/study/apply/research/ 

You should clearly state that you wish your application to be considered for a fully funded studentship offered by the Department of Information Science and The National Archives. Deadline for submission of full application is Tuesday 28th May 2013 and it is anticipated that interviews will take place during the week commencing 3rd June 2013. It would be preferable for the successful candidate to commence studies on 1st July 2013.

Informal enquiries about the research project should be made to Prof Tom Jackson at [email protected] or on 01509 635666. Enquiries about the application process can be made to Lynda Langton at [email protected] or on 01509 223081.

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