View All Vacancies

Research Fellow in Statistics


Location:  Highfield Campus
Salary:   £30,942 per annum
Full Time Fixed Term - 24 months
Closing Date:  Wednesday 20 November 2019
Interview Date:   Friday 20 December 2019
Reference:  1193219PJ

Applications are invited for a 24-month position of Research Fellow in Statistics within the Southampton Statistical Sciences Research Institute and the School of Mathematical Sciences at the University of Southampton. The post holder will have a close collaborative relationship with colleagues in the School of Engineering Sciences at Southampton, as part of the EPSRC-funded “CerTest” project.

The main focus will be the Bayesian design of experiments to collect data to calibrate multi-scale models to facilitate the validation and certification of composite materials in aerospace applications. The position will be directly supervised by Professors David Woods (Statistics) and Janice Barton (Engineering), and will interact closely with the wider project team led by Professor Ole Thomsen (Bristol, Engineering).   

CerTest – full title ‘Certification for Design - Reshaping the Testing Pyramid’ – is £6.9M research investment (programme grant) of the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). CerTest is a close partnership between academic partners at the Universities of Bristol (lead), Bath, Exeter and Southampton, with strong industrial and stakeholder support from Airbus, Rolls Royce, BAE Systems, GKN Aerospace, Centre for Modelling and Simulation, the National Composites Centre and the Alan Turing Institute, and close interaction with the European Aviation Safety Agency. CerTest addresses barriers to validation and certification of composite aerostructures posed by the so-called ‘building block approach’ (or ‘testing pyramid’), which is the backbone of current validation and certification processes. CerTest represents a decisive step towards ‘virtual testing’ on the structural scale, which aims to reduce development cost and time to market, as well as to enable more structurally efficient and lightweight composite aerostructures that are essential for meeting future fuel and cost efficiency challenges. 

The core research challenges in CerTest are strongly multidisciplinary. The research is conducted through close collaboration between the universities and with the industrial partners by a team of academics and postdoctoral fellows, supported by a group of PhD and EngD studentships.

For more information about CerTest see: 

To deliver the overarching objectives of CerTest it is necessary to develop methodologies that enable high-fidelity and robust testing of composite aero-structures on the component and sub-structure levels. A key part of the novel research will be to design the testing approach and to integrate the  physical testing with multi-scale modelling in a closed feed-back loop, so that the models inform the choice of physical tests and the test outputs inform and update the models. The research will  focus on the development of methods for the optimal design of experiments under a Bayesian learning approach to characterise  load response, intrinsic features, defects and damage. 

This role will require a combination of technical and scientific skills, and the ideal candidate should hold a PhD in Statistics, relevant areas of Applied Mathematics or quantitative areas of Engineering. Experience in Bayesian modelling and computation and/or design of experiments would be highly desirable, along with experience in and/or enthusiasm for engineering applications and computational modelling. 

This post is being offered on a full-time basis, with funding for up to 2 years, starting as soon as possible after **2 January 2020**.

Informal enquiries are encouraged and may be made to Professor David Woods, telephone +44 (0)23 8059 5117, email:

You should submit your completed online application form at The application deadline will be midnight on the closing date stated above. If you need any assistance, please call Hannah Farrance (Recruitment Team) on +44 (0) 23 8059 2507. Please quote reference 1193219PJ on all correspondence.

Applications will be considered from candidates who are working towards or nearing completion of a relevant PhD qualification. The title of Research Fellow will be applied upon completion of PhD. Prior to the qualification being awarded the title of Senior Research Assistant will be given.

Athena SWAN Bronze Award holder: Mathematical Sciences and S3RI

The closing date for this job opportunity has now passed, and applications are no longer being accepted for this position

Further details:

We aim to be an equal opportunities employer and welcome applications from all sections of the community. Please note that applications from agencies will not be accepted unless indicated in the job advert.

Login to your account


Forgotten your password?

Register for an account

Mindful Employer Disability Confident Leader HR Excellence In Research Stonewall Diversity Champion Athena Swan Silver Award - University of Southampton Committed to being an Inclusive Employer Technician Commitment