Research course

Intelligent Mobility PhD

Royal College of Art · School of Design

Visit the institution website for COVID‑19 updates

Entry requirements

The programme welcomes applications from candidates from across the world and of all ages, including those with academic and professional backgrounds. Applications are considered in terms of quality of proposal, quality of practice (where appropriate), readiness to undertake a research degree at this level and supervisory capacity.

Now accepting applications for the September 2022 intake. Visit the RCA website for entry requirements and the application process.

Months of entry


Course content

The Intelligent Mobility research programme explores novel vehicle types, services, and integrated city solutions. Study at the World's number one ranked art and design university for seven consecutive years (2015-2021) in the QS World University Subject Rankings.

The Intelligent Mobility MPhil/PhD programme promotes critical and thoughtful research and design in the development of future mobility. It provides a design-led disruptive research environment focussing on new ways of designing vehicles, experiences, spaces and infrastructure that address societal issues. Whilst always open for suggestions, we welcome in particular proposals aligned to one or more of our Intelligent Mobility Design Centre studios, approaching mobility distinct yet complementary perspectives.

  1. The Automotive Transitions Studio focus is on vehicle design, exploring the paradigm shifts in the car industry, its transition to sustainability and its connection with car design heritage, material culture, fashion, and people’s aspirations.
  2. The People and Places Studio approaches mobility from an integrated systems perspective and explores future urban mobility services; the design of mobility environments, experiences and the development of mass transport within our urban and extended environments.
  3. The Humanising Technology Studio focuses on user experience and human factors that have been formed and transformed through trends in new mobility solutions and technologies. Topics include the creation of meaningful experiences; understanding fears, hopes and aspirations; and designing for experiential changes in current and future mobility.

The RCA also offers a Design MRes, a one year, full-time taught degree that provides effective preparation for PhD study.

Online Open Day

To find out more about this programme, watch the replay of our Research Open Evening from 13 October, 2021 (from 52:45).

Department specialisms

Automotive Transitions, People and Places, Humanising Technology

Fees and funding

Visit the RCA website to find out more about scholarships and funding opportunities.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PhD
    full time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    • Distance learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Intelligent Mobility Design Centre