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We have 49 Biodiversity PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships



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Biodiversity PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

We have 49 Biodiversity PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

A PhD in Biodiversity provides you with the opportunity to study an ecosystem in detail during a three-year project. Whether you’re working in a tropical rainforest, a city, or the ocean, you’ll be investigating the factors that have been influencing biodiversity or trying to develop ways of reducing the impact.

What’s it like to do a PhD in Biodiversity?

As a Biodiversity PhD student, you’re likely to spend time doing field work and collecting samples that you’ll later analyse in the laboratory. Depending on your exact project you’ll spend more or less time in the laboratory, but regardless, you’ll gain a range of skills and experience in your field.

Some typical research topics in Biodiversity include:

  • Impacts of mining/quarries on biodiversity
  • Conservation management plans
  • Developing artificial habitats to reduce the loss of biodiversity
  • The effect of climate change on biodiversity
  • Effectiveness of National Pollinator Strategy
  • The effects of deep-sea plastic on sea life (cross over with Marine Biology)

A general day will consist of surveying your ecosystem of interest and recording data or testing samples previously taken in the laboratory. You’ll also spend time chatting to your supervisor and colleagues about your methods and results and plan your next set of observations and experiments. At the end of your PhD, you’ll produce a thesis of around 60,000 words and have a viva exam to defend your work.

The majority of Biodiversity PhD programmes are advertised projects that come with full funding attached. While the project is pre-determined to a degree, you are responsible for choosing where to take the work along the way.

Proposing your own project in Biodiversity is uncommon, as you’ll have to find a supervisor with research interests that overlap with your project, they need to have the connections to send you to your ecosystem of study, and you must find funding to cover both PhD and bench fees.

Entry requirements

The entry requirements for most Biodiversity PhD programmes involve a Masters in a subject directly related to Biology, with experience in Environmental Biology desirable, at Merit or Distinction level. If English isn’t your first language, you’ll also need to show that you have the right level of language proficiency.

PhD in Biodiversity funding options

The Research Council responsible for funding Biodiversity PhDs in the UK is the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC). They provide fully-funded studentships including a stipend for living costs, a consumables budget for bench fees and a tuition fee waiver. Students don’t apply directly to the BBSRC, you apply for advertised projects with this funding attached.

It’s uncommon for Biodiversity PhD students to be ‘self-funded’ due to the additional bench fees. However, if you were planning to fund yourself it might be achievable (depending on your project) through the UK government’s PhD loan and part-time work.

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Population genomics of insect communities

Declines in insect populations and species are arguably one of the most concerning symptoms of the biodiversity crisis, given their importance in underpinning food webs and ecosystem processes. Read more

Standing nonheritable variation in bacteria

The aim of this multi-disciplinary project is to develop quantitative methods to measure variation and selection, and their impacts on the dynamics of bacterial populations under changing environmental conditions. Read more

Developing a Novel Soil Health Assessment Framework for Sustainable Land Management

PhD Studentship. Developing a Novel Soil Health Assessment Framework for Sustainable Land Management. Supervisors. Dr Samuel Eze (Director of Study), Dr Simon Jeffery (Second supervisor). Read more

The impacts of anthropogenic noise on bats - experimental studies to identify thresholds and inform industry guidance

An opportunity to apply for a funded full-time PhD in the College of Health, Science and Society, UWE Bristol in partnership with the Milner Institute of Ecology and Evolution at the University of Bath. The studentship will be funded by UWE Bristol and RSK Biocensus Ltd. . Read more

Microbial adaptations for life within the plastisphere

The project aims to better understand the plastisphere ecosystem and the adaptations that have been evolved in marine organisms to colonize, live and consume plastic surfaces. Read more
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Understanding microbial processes in the deep Pacific

The deep seafloor covers about 70% of the Earth’s surface and is home to a diversity of life, mainly microorganisms. To survive in this extreme environment where there is no sunlight, often extremely cold and at very high hydrostatic pressures (e.g. Read more

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