A PhD is a 3-4 year research-based training experience. As well as preparing you for a potential career in academic research, and allowing you to make a personal scientific contribution, a PhD will teach you crucial skills that are just as relevant in a developing industry such as that based on synthetic biology. For example, you will learn not only key experimental/modelling/programming skills as appropriate, but also how to collaborate in an inherently interdisciplinary environment, and how to interface with scientific literature that is of direct relevance to companies developing cutting-edge products.
We are part of a team that runs the EPSRC-funded Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Biodesign Engineering. This cohort-based scheme has an integrative training programme that covers experimentation, automation, coding, data science and entrepreneurship applied to the design, realisation and optimisation of novel biological systems for diverse applications.
The CDT is being led by Imperial College with the University of Manchester and University College London as partners. All students will undertake the MRes in Systems and Synthetic Biology at Imperial College in their first year, with an extended project at the lead-supervisor institution, followed by a 3 year PhD registration in that host institution.
Our aim is to build an inclusive cohort of students with diverse skillsets from life sciences, engineering and physical/computational backgrounds. We therefore encourage applications from students that reflect this diversity.
Opportunities for PhDs also exist outside the CDT. To enquire, it is best to contact the research group leaders directly (the earlier in the academic year, the better). Be sure to also look out for opportunities on our twitter feed @IC_CSynBio.