I am a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) affiliated with the Vision, Learning, and Control (VLC) group in the School of Electronics and Computer Science (ECS) at the University of Southampton.

I specialize in computer vision and machine learning for artificial general intelligence. I am committed to teaching AI/machines to comprehend the world through multimodal data, enabling them to achieve animal-level, or human-level, or superhuman-level general intelligence. My current focus is on making machine learning models more capable and controllable to understand the physical world, through scaling and aligning compute, data, models, and tasks for deep learning. I am interested in exploring machine learning methodologies, including generative modeling, continual learning, and affective computing.

UK-based/International PhD Positions:

We are currently seeking PhD students to join the VLC group at the University of Southampton. This exciting opportunity is ideal for individuals passionate about researching one of the following topics: 1) Generative AI, 2) Protecitve AI, and 3) Emotional AI, in the context of Computer Vision and Machine Learning. Successful applicants for these PhD positions will have the chance to receive studentships funded by the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences at the University of Southampton. Each studentship covers tuition fees and provides a stipend for a duration of 3.5 years. These positions are open to students from UK, Horizon Europe qualifying countries and other countries. Note that as a result of the UK rejoining Horizon Europe, students from countries eligible for Horizon Europe are entitled to home-level tuition fees rather than international fees. This change has the potential to enhance their likelihood of obtaining PhD scholarships. Check out our published adverts (advert 1 and advert 2) or go for the pre-application detailed below!

The supervision team for these PhD projects consists of esteemed individuals from the University of Southampton's VLC group. This includes Prof. Dr. Adam Prugel-Bennett, who serves as the group head, and myself, Asst Prof. Dr. Zhiwu Huang. As a team, we will work closely to provide guidance and supervision throughout the duration of the PhD project. Our team has an impressive track record of publications in this field, exemplified by our recent work on the paper titled "Freestyle Layout-to-Image Synthesis". This paper has been accepted as a highlight (10% of accepted papers, 2.5% of submissions) for CVPR 2023 and introduces a versatile generative model capable of producing realistic and imaginative images, such as a "warehouse running on a railroad" or "a hornless unicorn sitting on a bench," based on an input segmentation layout.

By undertaking the PhD project, the successful candidate will develop a deep understanding of novel algorithms in computer vision, machine learning, and generative modeling. Furthermore, they will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the vibrant culture of the VLC group. This includes engaging in activities like coffee morning talks, away days, journal clubs, and group conferences, fostering a stimulating and collaborative research environment. Additionally, we believe that the position holders will benefit from various opportunities to expand their experience and knowledge beyond the scope of the PhD project, contributing to their personal and professional growth.

Application Procedure

To initiate the application process, kindly submit your pre-application package to me at Zhiwu.Huang@soton.ac.uk. The package should include your CV, transcript of courses, and a concise statement outlining your research interests.

Southampton-based Openings:

I am always looking for talented and motivated students who are interested in doing research with me on 1) generative computer vision, 2) continual machine learning, and 3) artificial general intelligence. Students with either EE or CS background are highly encouraged to apply.

Should you be already a University of Southampton student and is thinking of doing your PhD/MPhil dissertation in the areas listed above then please feel free to contact me at Zhiwu.Huang@soton.ac.uk and arrange a meeting for more discussions.

International Collaborations:

I am keen to collaborate with any outstanding academics as well as visiting students/academics who are interested in the research on 1) generative computer vision, 2) continual machine learning, and 3) artificial general intelligence.

Should you be interested in these collaborations, please don’t hesitate to reach me at Zhiwu.Huang@soton.ac.uk .

NOTE: I apologize in advance that I might not be able to reply to each individual query/application regarding PhD/MPhil/Intern/Visiting opportunities unless there is a good fit and you are a strong candidate.