PhD Studentship in Geotechnical Engineering


City University London is a global University committed to academic excellence with a focus on business and the professions and an enviable central London location.

The University attracts over 17,000 students (35% at postgraduate level) from more than 150 countries and academic staff from over 50 countries. Its academic range is broadly-based with world leading strengths in business; law; health sciences; engineering; mathematical sciences; informatics; social sciences; and the arts including journalism and music.

City is in the top 5% of universities in the world according to the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2011/12 and in the top 30 UK Universities according to the Times Higher Education Table of Tables 2012. It is ranked in the top 10 in the UK for graduate-level jobs and the top 12 for starting salaries (The Sunday Times University Guide 2012). Fifteen of its subject areas were identified as undertaking world-leading or internationally-excellent research in the last Research Assessment Exercise.

City has embarked on a strategic transformation to strengthen still further its position as a leading global University.

Applications are invited for a research studentship for 3 years (leading to a doctorate degree) to undertake a programme of research and study on geotechnical centrifuge modelling using a micro geomechanics approach. The studentship will be within the Department of Civil Engineering in the School of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences at City University London.

Centrifuge modelling is an effective way of predicting the behaviour of geotechnical structures. Recent investment in centrifuge testing facilities has broadened the range of applications but in most cases, soil fabric has been disregarded. The proposed PhD project aims to construct models with more realistic soil fabrics so that the link between micro properties and the macro response of the soil can be established. This study will make use of 3D tomography and image analysis techniques to provide fundamental understanding about the role of the internal topology of the soil on the mechanical behaviour -at field stress levels.

Also Read  MPhil/PhD Scholarship Growth, Employment, Distribution, and Cohesion in the EU

The successful candidate will work on an interdisciplinary project that combines the extensive centrifuge modelling expertise at City University with forefront developments in image processing. The candidate is expected to develop links within the 3D imaging community and to contribute to the development of a research group of international standing in experimental micromechanics of geomaterials at City University.


The PhD candidate will be responsible for undertaking research under the supervision of Dr Fonseca and Professor Taylor on the topic of geotechnical centrifuge modelling using a micro geomechanics approach.

The candidate will be responsible for reporting the results of the research in agreement with the standards set by the University and submitting papers for peer review journals or relevant international conferences.

Person Specification

We invite applications from enthusiastic individuals, who are able to work independently and have a good honours degree (at least a 2:1 or equivalent) in Civil Engineering and preferably hold a Master degree. Knowledge of C++ and Matlab (or python) is required.

Additional Information

The project will be supervised by Dr Joana Fonseca and Professor Neil Taylor. The studentship is £16,000, per annum plus fees, for 3 years and is open to both home (EU) and overseas students.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Dr Joana Fonseca, Department of Civil Engineering, School of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences, City University London, Northampton Square, EC1V 0HB, Tel: +44 20 7040 0214 or via email: prior to making a formal application. Applicants should send their CV and a covering letter describing their motivation for applying for the post by email to Dr Fonseca.

Also Read  School of Healthcare/ Cloth workers Research Studentships: 2013 Wounds / Continence: In Conjunction with the Clothworkers Centre for Textile Materials Innovation for Healthcare (CCTMIH) Initiative

Closing date: 6 September 2013

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *