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Digital Roads of the Future


The call for applicants for Cohort 3 is now closed.

A total of 27 FUTUREROADS fellowships are available for the most talented researchers from around the world.

The aim is to recruit, train and support individual fellows over 36 months, who wish to contribute towards a future where advances in data and materials science enable the physical road infrastructure assets to be cognisant of their state, and able to communicate it to their digital twin and robotic systems.

This involves a transformational step change from assumption-based to information-rich modelling, manual to self-sensing health monitoring, and negative to positive social and environmental outcomes.

MSCA and 24 Industry partners are funding the programme. UOC and Industry partners are working together to deliver successful training, supervision and inter-sectoral short visits and secondments for fellows.

Who can apply?

The programme is open for all applicants who meet the MSCA mobility rules for fellows. The first cohort of 6 fellows were recruited in June 2022. A second call for up to 12 fellows was open in July 2022 and a third call for up to 11 fellows has now opened. 

The fellowship is designed to support post-doctoral researchers with up to 2 years of postdoctoral research experience (after completion of the PhD) at the time of applying. Applicants with 3-4 years of postdoctoral research experience will be considered in exceptional cases. 

Check your personal eligibility below.

How to apply

For better understanding of the process, we suggest to first watch the video with brief overview on "How to prepare the application?

Applicants should follow these steps before making an application:

Step 1: Read the Call for Applicants

Step 2: Read the Guide for Applicants 

Step 3: Contact an eligible primary supervisor (as per the Guide for Applications) to discuss your intended application

Step 4: Download Ethics Form and Project Description & Plan template

Step 5: Fill out Ethics Form and Project Description & Plan template

Step 6: Please check you have included

Step 7: Go to the University portal and follow the application steps listed

Step 8: Submit application

When to apply

Application timeline for cohort 3:

  • Opening of call: 16 March 2023
  • Deadline for applications: 16 June 2023
  • Evaluation period: approximately 8 weeks
  • Applicants will receive answers: August 2023
  • Fellowship period begins: December 2023

Dates in this section will be updated for future application rounds.

Further details on the research challenges can be found in the Call for Applicants document. General outline of the ongoing research can be found here within the research section of this website.

Personal eligibility

  • PhD degree or evidence of completing PhD degree requirements and waiting to receive the degree
  • 0-2 years of postdoctoral research experience (after completing the PhD) in any Future Roads scientific areas. Applicants with 3-4 years of postdoctoral research experience will be considered in exceptional cases.
  • Be available to start their fellowship on their cohort start date.
  • Comply with the MSCA Mobility rule, i.e., applicants must not have resided or carried out their main activities (work, studies, etc.) for more than 12 months in the UK in the three years immediately prior to the application deadline. The latter excludes time spent as part of a procedure for obtaining refugee status under the Geneva Convention, compulsory national service, and/or short stays such as holidays are not considered.

Why apply?

The fellowships are focused primarily on digital twins, smart materials, data science, automation and robotics, and sustainability solutions for the road infrastructure industry. The programme allows applicants to have the freedom to develop their own ideas with access to excellent facilities.

FUTUREROADS will enhance fellows’ understanding of the methodologies and approaches of other scientific disciplines at the highest level. The aim is also to establish a multidisciplinary training platform to strengthen researchers’ capabilities such that they are capable to work anywhere in Europe and, therefore, attracting researchers from around the globe to Europe and contributing to the European goals of increasing the numbers of researchers with innovation skills in Europe.

The programme supports incoming fellowships for postdoctoral researchers on a competitive basis. It aims at high-potential individuals primarily interested in following a career in the transportation infrastructure sector or academia.

What is included in a fellowship?

Successful applicants will receive an employment contract and will be entitled to an individual mobility and research budgets.

Fellows are offered career development support and training events to develop their non-scientific skills.

They are expected to take part in teaching activities at UOC and are encouraged to apply for additional competitive funding.


Check out FAQs for some answers, or

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Selection committee

  • Ms. Jemma Andrews (Chair), University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • Kevin Walker, National Highways, United Kingdom
  • Timothy Hall, Costain Group Plc, United Kingdom
  • Prof. John Miles, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • Prof. Maria del Carmen Rubio Gámez, University of Granada, Spain
  • Dr. Chengxu Zhou, University of Leads, UK