Innovative solutions to improve antibiotic stewardship and reduced AMR in veterinary practices

This studentship aims to determine if the Antimicrobial Resistance Simulator tool (AMRSim | Welcome) can be used to change the behaviour of veterinary staff towards infection control that subsequently results in reduced infection rates and therefore improve animal health and welfare.

Start date

1 April 2022


3 years

Application deadline

Funding source

University of Surrey and Zoetis

Funding information

Fully funded, including fees, stipend and training.


Applications are invited for a prestigious three-year, Zoetis, Glasgow School of Art, University of Plymouth and University of Surrey (School of Veterinary Medicine) fully-funded PhD studentship, commencing in April 2022.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) remains a global challenge for animal and human health, and novel intervention strategies are urgently sought. This studentship aims to determine if AMRSim - developed through AHRC-funded projects, AMRSim and VIPVis can be used to change the behaviour of veterinary staff towards infection control that subsequently results in reduced infection rates and therefore improve animal health and welfare.

The student will work with academic and clinical colleagues to pilot AMRSim before fuller evaluation of different ways of implementing AMRSim in a variety of companion animal veterinary practices. There are several potential ways for a practice to use AMRSim: face to face workshop; web- or tablet- based for self-paced individual learning. A key component of this PhD will be to determine which delivery format has the biggest impact on changing behaviours. The second component is to determine whether the use of AMRSim in veterinary practice results in fewer post-surgical infections, less environmental contamination, and reduced antibiotic prescribing.

The successful applicant will be registered with the University of Surrey and based in the School of Veterinary Medicine (Guildford), with field work undertaken in local veterinary practices. Occasional visits to the Glasgow School of Art and the University of Plymouth may also be required.

The supervisors for this project are Professor Roberto La Ragione (University of Surrey), Professor Mark Chambers (University of Surrey), and Dr Kayleigh Wyles (University of Plymouth).

The advisors for this project are Dr Dynatra Subasinghe (University of Surrey) and Professor Alastair Macdonald (Glasgow School of Art). 

Relevant publications 

Alastair S. Macdonald, Mark A. Chambers, Roberto La Ragione, Kayleigh Wyles, Matthieu Poyade, Andrew Wales, Naomi Klepacz, Tom R. Kupfer, Fraje Watson & Shona Noble. 2021. Addressing Infection Risk in Veterinary Practice through the Innovative Application of Interactive 3D Animation Methods. The Design Journal.

Kupfer, T.R., Wyles, K.J., Watson, F., La Ragione, R.M., Chambers, M.A., & Macdonald, A.S. 2019. Determinants of hand hygiene behaviour based on the Theory of Interpersonal Behaviour. Journal of Infection Prevention.

Related links

School of Veterinary Medicine Glasgow School of Art Zoetis AMRSim University of Plymouth

Eligibility criteria

This exceptional research opportunity requires a candidate with an interest in antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and who holds a good first degree (2:1 or above) in a relevant subject such as biology, microbiology or veterinary medicine. The project will involve microbiology-based laboratory work, together with assessment of perceptions, understanding, and behaviours pre- and post- implementation of AMRSim. Therefore, a sound understanding of microbiology is required and some background in psychology/behavioural science would be highly desirable. However, if required, full training will be provided.

English Language requirements 

Full details on country-specific entry requirements can be found on the Veterinary Medicine and Science programme page

How to apply

Applications should be submitted via the Veterinary Medicine and Science programme page on the "Apply" tab. Please clearly state the studentship title and supervisor on your application.

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Application deadline

Contact details

Roberto La Ragione
14 AX 01
Telephone: +44 (0)1483 686399

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