Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click on 'Find out more' to see our Cookie statement.

The European Commission has announced the funding of a new Innovative Training Network, led by Oxford University, which will train PhD students in Machine Learning Skills to address Climate Change.

iMIRACLI (innovative MachIne leaRning to constrain Aerosol-cloud CLimate Impacts) brings together leading climate and machine learning scientists across Europe with non-academic partners, such as Amazon and the MetOffice, to educate a new generation of climate data scientists.

The project will start in 2020, with students beginning their projects in September 2020, kicking off with a summer school held at Oxford. It will fund 15 PhD student across Europe, with three of them directly supervised in Oxford (two in Physics, one in Statistics). Oxford is the overall lead of the project and Philip Stier, Professor of Atmospheric Physics at Oxford University, is the lead PI. 

Each student will have a climate science and a machine learning supervisor as well as an industrial advisor. All students will have secondments to their industrial partners as well as to the co-supervisor.   

While there is now general acceptance that Climate Change is being influenced by human activity, with historic agreements such as the Paris agreement aiming to keep global mean temperature rise below 2oC of pre-industrial levels, the understanding of climate change at a quantitative level is still subject to large uncertainties. This is to a large extent because of the uncertain role of clouds in the climate system. 

It is this quantitative understanding of the role of clouds for climate change that the consortium of nine Universities, led by the University of Oxford, will address with an innovative programme of study that provides each PhD student with co-mentorship and supervision from a climate and data scientist.

Machine Learning, underpinned by Artificial Intelligence, has undergone rapid advances in recent years and offers new tools to study, analyse and learn from the mass of data being collected by Earth Observations. 

Modern satellites, airborne and ground-based instruments provide unprecedented observational data that coupled with Machine Learning techniques can enable the coupling of predictions and real-world observations. 

Prof Philip Stier, said: ‘Machine Learning has the potential to unlock unique in-depth understanding of the climate system from vast climate datasets. However, this requires a new generation of experts with substantial knowledge of both climate and data science. We will train and shape a new generation of climate data scientists, with a solid foundation in climate science and a competence in the latest machine learning techniques.’

The new Training Network, named "innovative MachIne leaRning to constrain Aerosol-cloud CLimate Impacts", or iMIRACLI, will be led by the University of Oxford and includes the University of Leipzig, Stockholm University, ETH Zurich, the University of Edinburgh, Universitat de Valencia, University College London, the German Aerospace Center (DLR), Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne and the University of Jena, together with the non-academic partners Amazon, The Alan Turing Institute, MetOffice, Iris.ai, GAF AG and FastOpt.

Details of the opportunities will be advertised widely from the Climate Processes group website as well as the iMIRACLI Twitter (@iMIRACLI_ITN). 

Similar stories

Oxford research given significant boost to develop lithium-rich battery cathodes

Materials science Research

A team of scientists, including those based at the University of Oxford as part of the Faraday Institution CATMAT project, researching next-generation cathode materials have made a significant breakthrough in understanding oxygen-redox processes involved in lithium-rich cathode materials.

Lack of prey is causing puffin chicks to starve leading to population declines

Research Zoology

New research from the University of Oxford’s Department of Zoology has used innovative technology to study causes of declines in puffin populations in the northeast Atlantic, and found that a lack of prey near some major breeding colonies is driving puffin chicks to starve, ultimately leading to population declines.

Could South African mine wastes provide a feasible storage method for millions of tonnes of CO2?

Climate change Engineering Research

An article written for the University's Science Blog by Liam Bullock (Engineering Science), Zakhele Nkosi and Maxwell Amponsah-Dacosta.

Engineering Science team awarded joint UK-Ireland funding to research ocean wave breaking

Engineering Funding Research

£1.1m multi-institution project aims to assist the development of offshore renewable energy in challenging sea conditions.

Joining the spots: leopard print fashion and big cat conservation

Research Zoology

Researchers at the Department of Zoology's Wildlife Conservation Research Unit explore the extent of public interest in leopard print fashion, and whether this interest could be harnessed for the benefit of the animals through a ‘species royalty’ initiative.

‘Citizen scientists’ help researchers gather new insights into polar bear behaviour

Citizen science Research Zoology

Oxford University is working with Canadian researchers on a first-of-its-kind project that will engage citizen volunteers to help advance knowledge about polar bear behaviour in a changing environment by analysing a decade’s worth of images captured by trail cameras.

Similar stories

Oxford research given significant boost to develop lithium-rich battery cathodes

Materials science Research

A team of scientists, including those based at the University of Oxford as part of the Faraday Institution CATMAT project, researching next-generation cathode materials have made a significant breakthrough in understanding oxygen-redox processes involved in lithium-rich cathode materials.

Lack of prey is causing puffin chicks to starve leading to population declines

Research Zoology

New research from the University of Oxford’s Department of Zoology has used innovative technology to study causes of declines in puffin populations in the northeast Atlantic, and found that a lack of prey near some major breeding colonies is driving puffin chicks to starve, ultimately leading to population declines.

Could South African mine wastes provide a feasible storage method for millions of tonnes of CO2?

Climate change Engineering Research

An article written for the University's Science Blog by Liam Bullock (Engineering Science), Zakhele Nkosi and Maxwell Amponsah-Dacosta.

Engineering Science team awarded joint UK-Ireland funding to research ocean wave breaking

Engineering Funding Research

£1.1m multi-institution project aims to assist the development of offshore renewable energy in challenging sea conditions.

Joining the spots: leopard print fashion and big cat conservation

Research Zoology

Researchers at the Department of Zoology's Wildlife Conservation Research Unit explore the extent of public interest in leopard print fashion, and whether this interest could be harnessed for the benefit of the animals through a ‘species royalty’ initiative.

‘Citizen scientists’ help researchers gather new insights into polar bear behaviour

Citizen science Research Zoology

Oxford University is working with Canadian researchers on a first-of-its-kind project that will engage citizen volunteers to help advance knowledge about polar bear behaviour in a changing environment by analysing a decade’s worth of images captured by trail cameras.