Informatics Drake Studentship

Qualification: PhD

Department: School of Informatics

Application deadline: 18th March 2020. Interviews w/c 20th April 2020

Start date: September 2020



Dr John Drake and Professor Edmund Burke

Project Title

Mathematical Models and Algorithms for Allocating Scarce Airport Resources

Project Description

The School of Informatics at the University of Leicester invites applications for a fully funded PhD studentship to work on a project funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council. OR-MASTER aims to develop new mathematical models and algorithms for solving complex, large-scale airport resource allocation problems. We will seek to combine aspects of airport operations, air traffic flow management, and large-scale, deterministic, stochastic and dynamic optimization to develop and evaluate advanced models and exact, meta and hyper-heuristic solution algorithms. Our ultimate goal is to develop decision support capabilities for airport capacity allocation and management

The Programme represents a strong partnership between academia, the air transport industry and policy makers. Over the six years of the Programme, OR-MASTER will involve close collaboration with a host of international organisations that will support the project, providing real-world data, insights and expertise. Our partners are National Air Traffic Services (NATS) in the UK; Eurocontrol (managing air traffic across Europe); Park Air Systems; KLM Air France; Zurich Airport and Athens International Airport; the research organisations linked to the national air navigation services for Italy and Spain (SICTA and CRIDA); SESAR (Single European Sky research body); the Airport Services Association; Goldair Handling; ACI Europe (Airports Council International); the HALA! SESAR network of leading researchers in Europe working in the area of Air Traffic Management automation; NEXTOR II (National Centre of Excellence for Aviation Operations Research); the MIT International Centre for Air Transport Research (MIT-ICAT) in the USA; and DLR, the German Airspace Research Centre. 



This College of Science and Engineering studentship includes:

• A full UK/EU tuition fee waiver for 3.5 years
• An annual tax free stipend. For 2019/20 it is £15,009 
• Research Training Support Grant (RTSG)

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Candidates are normally expected to have a 2.1 or 1st class honors degree in Computer Science, Mathematics, Operations Research or related discipline, from a UK University or an equivalent standard from an overseas university. 

The successful candidate must have a strong programming background, as well as good analytical and communication skills. The student is expected to work as part of a team and independently, and to prepare clear reports and research papers. An understanding of mathematical optimization techniques, heuristic and hyper-heuristic search is highly desirable although not mandatory.

The University of Leicester English language requirements apply where applicable.

Informal enquiries

Informal enquiries

Project enquiries

Dr John Drake

Application enquiries

How to apply

How to apply

To apply please use the Apply button at the bottom of the page.  Select September 2020 entry.

  • In the funding section of the application please indicate you wish to be considered for the Informatics-Drake Studentship. 
  • In the proposal section please provide the name of the supervisors and the project title. 
  • Include a CV and a personal statement explaining your interest in the project and why we should consider you together with all other relevant application documents.



UK/EU applicants only