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EPSRC and MOD Centre for Doctoral Training in Complex Integrated Systems for Defence and Security

About us

Find out more about what we do.

The Defence and security sector plays a vital role in ensuring the UK is safe, secure and prosperous.

The EPSRC and MOD Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Complex Integrated Systems for Defence and Security (CISDnS) is a £13M partnership between the University of Southampton, The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), the Ministry of Defence, and numerous industry partners. It is focused on training future leaders, researchers and technologists to address the sector’s significant skills shortage at the doctoral, research and innovation leadership level.

Our diverse research community

CISDnS will form, nurture and deliver a multiskilled, multigenerational cohort. It will bring together recent first-degree graduates, experienced defence sector employees, those transitioning to civilian roles or returning to study, as well as those with non-traditional academic backgrounds.

Working together in an industry co-created training environment, students will be part of a friendly and supportive community, developed through cohort building activities, training and events, managed by a dedicated team of academic leaders and administrative staff.

The programme

Training will be built around a systems-based approach to deliver graduates who can adapt throughout their careers to rapid scientific, military and political change. The doctoral training programme will be delivered through an innovative, flexible, and modular design that provides students with significant levels of flexibility, including the provision of multiple routes to a doctorate.

The CDT is organised into three key themes connected by their focus on complex integrated systems challenges:

  • Digital
  • Physical 
  • Biological

The research focus is multidisciplinary by design, extending beyond engineering and physical sciences, to environmental and life sciences, social sciences and medicine. 

Research topics will be guided by the sector but will focus on the strategic areas of maritime, aeronautical, aerospace, medical and electronic systems. These are linked by cross-cutting themes including acoustics, AI, autonomy, control, cyber, digital twins, geo-spatial, human factors, human-machine interaction, and advanced materials.