• Nathaniel Byrne

Turing@Birmingham Newsletter, 15 January 2021

Calls & Opportunities

Applications open for 2021-22 Enrichment scheme

Now entering its sixth year, the Enrichment scheme offers students currently enrolled on a doctoral programme at a UK university the opportunity to undertake a 6-, 9-, or 12-month placement at the Turing or at one of the two new locations in the scheme.

For the first time this year we are partnering with the Jean Golding Institute at the University of Bristol and the Leeds Institute for Data Analytics at the University of Leeds to offer a new exciting opportunity for Enrichment students to engage with an even more diverse community of researchers located in three areas in the country. Students continue their PhD in conjunction with their current supervisor, while enriching their research and making new collaborations during their time spent on the scheme. Enrichment places are offered part-time or full-time with a choice of three different start dates. Find out more.

Applications close on 2 February 2021

Data Science for Social Good Summer Programme:

Fellow Applications Open

The University of Warwick is organising the 2021 DSSGx summer programme in partnership with the Ludwigs Maximilian University Munich and supported by The Alan Turing Institute. The programme will run over 12 weeks from 7 June to 27 August 2021, and will be entirely online due to COVID-19. They are seeking masters and PhD students to participate, and are interested to attract projects to work on, sponsorship, etc.

DSSGx gives aspiring data scientists the opportunity to refine their data science skills through intense training, and by working in small supervised teams on real-world data mining, machine learning, and data science projects. Participants will work with global non-profit organisations and government bodies to make a real-world social impact with their data, by improving their services, interventions, and outreach. Fellows are offered a stipend.

If you have a passion for data science, care about the social good, and love to work in an international team of top talent, you are invited to apply before 31 January 12:00 (GMT).

Find out more and apply.

Call for applications: Reinforcement Learning Study Group

The Reinforcement Learning Study Group invites participants to tackle a single reinforcement challenge provided by the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl). Researchers will brainstorm and engineer data science solutions, presenting their work at the end of the event.

For full details of this format, including the time commitment involved, please read our event page carefully.

Applications close on 25 January 2021

Call for Papers

The 13th International ACM Conference on Web Science in 2021 (WebSci’21) is an interdisciplinary conference where a multitude of research disciplines converge with the purpose of creating a greater insight into a complex global Web than the sum of their individual parts. We invite participation from diverse fields including computer and information sciences, communication, economics, informatics, law, linguistics, philosophy, political science, psychology, and sociology.

The ACM Web Science Conference will run as an online conference, where authors will present their work remotely to online participants. There is one format for submission. All contributors will submit an abstract (max 400 words) followed by a full paper of between 6 and 10 pages (inclusive of references, appendices, etc.).

Please email Nathaniel Byrne for full details. Abstract submission deadline is 12 February 2021

Call for Data Study Group challenges related to the theme of dementia

In September 2021, Turing Data Study Groups, in conjunction with the UK Dementia Research Institute (UK DRI) and the Deep Dementia Phenotyping (DEMON) Network will host a themed Data Study Group event. The event seeks to draw on a range of expertise across disciplines to better understand dementia-causing disorders and champion new diagnosis approaches, treatment, provision and prevention.

We are looking for six dementia related projects to feature in this thematic Data Study Group. Projects must have a dementia focus and can investigate any area, be it in detection, prevention or treatment. This is an ideal opportunity to generate exploration avenues, testing a proof of concept, kick starting a larger project and knowledge transfer. We particularly welcome proposals from charities, research institutes, healthcare arms or industry interested in neurodegeneration.

Please share with data scientists and research groups in your networks who are interested in dementia research. Find out more and submit a challenge.

Sign up to Turing Interest Groups

The Institute has announced 15 new Turing Interest Groups have launched. Interest Groups aim to promote research collaboration, share knowledge, and communicate emerging scientific concepts to the wider Institute and beyond, around a shared area of interest in data science and AI. These are:

Express your interest to join the Turing’s reviewer pool

Expressions of interest are now welcomed for reviewing Turing initiatives from the Turing Community and beyond. As the Institute is growing, there are an increasing number of activities within the Turing that require advice from expert and generalist reviewers. These include recurrent work linked to academic programmes (e.g. Enrichment Scheme / Data Study Groups / Training Provision), and the review of externally proposed projects that Turing engages with.

We are hoping to create a reviewer pool of individuals who hold diverse expertise and who can be guided by an established framework to ensure transparent and consistent reviewing across these programmes. Find out more and express your interest.

Events at the University of Birmingham

1st February – 26th February 2021

Metabolomics Data Processing and Data Analysis

This online course explores the tools and approaches that are used to process and analyse metabolomics data. You will investigate the challenges that are typically encountered in the analysis of metabolomics data, and provide solutions to overcome these problems.

Please see Birmingham Metabolomics Training Centre's website for course details and more information.

Events at the Alan Turing Institute

The Turing is committed to working flexibly and staying connected - we’ve reconfigured to virtual engagement. You can watch highlights of our past events at the video archive on YouTube.

Research programmes showcase

The Alan Turing Institute is pleased to invite you to its first Research Programmes Showcase, a new event series connecting the Turing’s University Partners to its research programmes. The events will:

  • Provide valuable insight into how you can get involved

  • Offer the opportunity to learn more about the research ambitions, partners and key projects of each programme

  • Feature a presentation and panel discussion via an audience Q & A session

  • Include a networking session with key members of the programme

You can find details of all scheduled events below, the public policy programme will be announcing their date shortly. To book your place, click on the event title:

Wednesday 20 January, 12:45 - 14:00

Tools, Practices and Systems seminar

Imane Hanoufi, Postdoctoral Research Assistant, QMUL, will present work in progress from "Raphtory: A practical system for the analysis of dynamic graphs". This will be followed by Ben Steer, Raphtory researcher and CEO of Chorograph, who will discuss his experience of building a start up based on an open source project as a doctoral student. Ben has also recently defended his thesis - congratulations to Dr Steer! Register now.

You can find out more information about the project through the Turing blog: Just add time: the dizzying potential of dynamic graphs.

Thursday 18 February, 15:00 - 17:00

Urban analytics monthly meet up

This series brings together members of the urban analytics research community once a month for presentations and discussion of recent research, hosted by the Turing’s Urban Analytics programme. The next meeting will take place online.

Turing ‘sandpit’ events on themes of the Greater Manchester local industrial strategy

The University of Manchester’s Institute for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence (IDSAI) is hosting four Turing ‘sandpit’ events in January and February 2021, based around the major themes of the Greater Manchester Local Industrial Strategy, with input from the related Turing programmes. The sandpits will focus on the following themes: Health and Care Innovation; Advanced Materials and Manufacturing; Clean Growth and Digital Transformation. Funding is available to support collaborative feasibility studies (£10k-£15k) co-developed at the sandpit events. To register your interest, complete the EOI form.

Community Events

22 January 2021, 14:00 – 18:00 GMT

Cambridge Centre for AI in Medicine’s Inaugural Event

In a webinar format packed with a stellar line-up of speakers and several audience Q&A sessions, our Inaugural Event will explore new horizons in machine learning for medicine, in particular the transformations now taking place at the critical interface between machine learning, medicine and bioscience.

For more information and to register, click here.

Wednesday 27 January, 17:00 GMT

ClientEarth Live – AI and climate change

What happens where AI meets the battle against climate change? In this one-hour webinar, renowned musician and ClientEarth Trustee Brian Eno will be introducing inventor, entrepreneur and scientist, Danny Hillis and Turing Chair of Board of Trustees and ClientEarth Chair, Howard Covington, who will explore the themes that will determine how the decade unfolds.

Register now.


23- 24 March 2021

The Turing Presents: AI UK

Following the postponement of the event this year, we are pleased to confirm the event will now take place 23 - 24 March 2021.

The Alan Turing Institute continues to pursue its ambitious goals: by advancing world-class research in data science and artificial intelligence (AI), training and inspiring the leaders of the future, and shaping the public conversation. AI UK, a dynamic two-day event, will see the Turing host an unrivalled showcase featuring the very best of UK academic work in AI and machine learning.

Further information will follow in due course, including the release of additional tickets.

Alan Turing Institute News

Institute offices at The British Library to remain closed

Our offices will remain closed. Our plans to reopen were always subject to any rapid developments and this decision has been taken in the light of the new health and safety advice, rising rates of infection and the guidance to ‘only go to work if you must’.

Virtual access to the Institute

You can also stay connected to the Turing via: Twitter, LinkedIN, Instagram and Facebook.

Thanks for your continued support.

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