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UK INDEMAND RESEARCH CENTRE
PhD studentships in Product Lifetimes, Resource Use and Sustainable Consumption

Applications are invited for up to two fully funded research studentships to be based at Nottingham Trent University in the new £11m UK INDEMAND research centre, a RCUK-funded collaboration with the universities of Cambridge, Bath and Leeds.

Increased product longevity provides an important means of achieving reductions in materials and energy consumption. In its latest Waste Policy review the Government proposed an economy in which resources are used sustainably ‘through design for longer life, upgrading, re-use or repair' and encouraged companies to ‘design and manufacture goods that are more efficient, durable, repairable and recyclable.'

In a rapidly expanding research programme Nottingham Trent University is working with designers, engineers, marketers, economists, sociologists and others to explore the challenge of increasing product lifetimes. Our aim is to enhance knowledge and understanding in order to develop credible proposals for change. The programme covers a range of sectors, including buildings, industrial machinery and equipment, vehicles, electrical and electronic goods, furniture, and DIY and home improvement goods.

We are keen to hear from prospective research students with an interest in this exciting field of research. Your proposal should address one or more of the following topics:

  • Consumer preferences and market demand for premium quality products
  • The growth of ‘discount retailers' and the affordability of quality
  • Economic implications of increased product lifetimes
  • Community-based social innovation for product longevity 
  • Design for upgradability and/or adaptability
  • Trade-offs between durability and recyclability
  • How and why products depreciate in value over time
  • Business models and systems of provision for repair and reuse.

The successful applicants will start in either January or October 2014.

Entry requirement
Applicants for MPhil or PhD should normally have a minimum of a first or second-class degree or a Masters degree in a relevant discipline.

Award
The studentships will pay UK/EU fees and provide a maintenance stipend linked to the RCUK rate (currently £13,590 per annum) for up to three years. Applications from non-EU students are welcome, but a successful candidate would be responsible for paying the difference between non-EU and UK/EU fees. (Fees for 2013/14 are £11,600 for non-EU students and £3,900 for UK/EU students and are likely to rise in subsequent years.)

Eligibility
Applications can be accepted from UK/EU and also International students. The minimum English language proficiency requirement for candidates who have not undertaken a higher degree at a UK HE institution is an overall IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score of 6.5 with minimum sub-scores of 6.0 in all component sections (writing, reading, listening and speaking) or an overall TOEFL score of 94-95 (internet based – IBT) with a minimum score of 22 in each of the four components.

Applying
For informal enquiries about these studentships, please contact Professor Tim Cooper: t.h.cooper@ntu.ac.uk

For an application pack, please email: gradschool@ntu.ac.uk

Please return completed application forms, with copies of academic and English proficiency (if applicable) certificates, and two academic references via email to: gradschool@ntu.ac.uk

The closing date for receipt of completed application forms is Monday 2 December 2013 at 09:00. School of Social Sciences VCS Supporting Information
 

RAE Unit of Assessment: 34

Funding Notes
The studentships will pay UK/EU fees and provide a maintenance stipend linked to the RCUK rate (currently £13,590 per annum) for up to three years.

Applications from non-EU students are welcome, but a successful candidate would be responsible for paying the difference between non-EU and UK/EU fees. (Fees for 2013/14 are £11,600 for non-EU students and £3,900 for UK/EU students


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