Distributed Multilateral Trust Model in 5G/6G Mobile Communication Networks

Eligibility: UK/International (including EU) graduates with the required entry requirements

Funding details: Bursary, tuition fees, additional allowances

Duration: Full-time – between three and three and a half years fixed term

Application deadline: October 25 2023

Interview dates: Will be confirmed to shortlisted candidates

Start date: January 2024

To find out more about the project, please contact Dr. Faouzi Bouali


This PhD project is part of the Cotutelle arrangement between Coventry University, UK and Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia.

The successful applicant will spend the 1st year at Deakin University and the following year at Coventry University and then the final 1.5 years at Deakin University.

The supervision team will be drawn from the two universities.

Project details

The emerging fifth/sixth generation (5G/6G) of mobile communication networks will enable real-time communications for a wide range of state-of-the-art and artificial intelligence (AI)-driven applications, such as connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs), tactile communications, intelligent internet of medical things, and connected robotics, which will accelerate the digital transformation of vertical industry sectors and significantly reshape our economies and lives. Because 5G/6G wireless networks are more open and diverse than previous generations, cyber security is a critical challenge they should intrinsically deal with to avoid introducing additional vulnerabilities into the sectors they are supporting. At the same time, given that 5G/6G networks could be potentially controlled by many operators using different management architectures, their security requirements cannot be met by the standard security trust architecture, which frequently relies on the security perimeter at network boundaries. Collaboration among different control domains using different management modes is critical for 5G/6G security architectures. This necessitates the provision of a multi-party and cross-domain trust system capable of supporting the coexistence of multiple trust models. To address this challenge, this proposal aims to develop a distributed multilateral trust model that is customisable, provable, and measurable.


Bursary, tuition fees, additional allowances


The successful candidate will receive comprehensive research training including technical, personal and professional skills.

All researchers at Coventry University (from PhD to Professor) are part of the Doctoral College and Centre for Research Capability and Development, which provides support with high-quality training and career development activities.

Candidate specification

Applicants must meet the admission and scholarship criteria for both Coventry University and Deakin University for entry to the cotutelle programme.

  • Applicants should have graduated within the top 15% of their undergraduate cohort. This might include a high 2:1 in a relevant discipline/subject area with a minimum 70% mark (80% for Australian graduates) in the project element or equivalent with a minimum 70% overall module average (80% for Australian graduates).
  • A master's degree in a relevant subject area, with overall mark at minimum Merit level. In addition, the mark for the master's dissertation (or equivalent) must be a minimum of 80%. Please note that where a candidate has a 70-79% and can provide evidence of research experience to meet equivalency to the minimum first – class honours equivalent (80%+) additional evidence can be submitted and may include independently peer – reviewed publications, research – related awards or prizes and/ or professional reports.
  • Language proficiency (IELTS overall minimum score of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in each component)
  • The potential to engage in innovative research and complete the PhD within a prescribed period of study.

For an overview of each university’s entry requirements please visit:



Please note that it is essential that applicants confirm that they are able to physically locate to both Coventry University (UK) and Deakin University (Australia).

Additional requirements
  • Strong background in 5G/6G wireless networks and their cyber security requirements. Prior experience in conducting cybersecurity analysis of 5G/6G wireless networks is a clear advantage.
  • Detailed knowledge of the architecture and protocol stack of 5G and Beyond (5G/B5G) networks with experience carrying out link- and system-level simulations of wireless networks using publicly available tools (e.g., NS3, OMNeT++ and Matlab).
  • Strong knowledge and experience in designing/applying artificial intelligence (AI)/machine learning (ML) techniques.
  • Excellent analytical, problem-solving, and software engineering skills, with prior experience implementing AI/ML algorithms using well-known frameworks (e.g., PyTorch and TensorFlow).
  • Experience in conducting theoretical and practical analysis.
  • Aspiration to achieve high-quality research contributions and publications in leading conferences and journals.

To find out more about the project please contact:  Dr. Faouzi Bouali

How to apply

All applications require a covering letter and a 2000-word supporting statement is required showing how the applicant’s expertise and interests are relevant to the project.  

All candidates must apply to both universities. 

Apply to Coventry University Apply to Deakin University
 Queen’s Award for Enterprise Logo
University of the year shortlisted
QS Five Star Rating 2023