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We have 73 Built Environment PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships



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Built Environment PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

We have 73 Built Environment PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

A PhD in Built Environment is closely related to Architecture, but takes a slightly more technical view of the subject area, incorporating research in Construction and Engineering alongside traditional architectural topics.

What’s it like to do a PhD in Built Environment?

PhDs in Built Environment offer doctoral students the chance to undertake interdisciplinary research in Architecture, Construction and Engineering, exploring the ways in which these subjects inform one another. Possible research topics include:

  • Air quality
  • Building acoustics
  • Building quality management
  • Civil and structural engineering
  • Construction industry
  • Construction law
  • Energy efficiency
  • Surveying
  • Sustainability
  • Thermography

The nature of Built Environment as a study area means that there are likely to be many real-world applications resulting from your research, such as the use of concrete as a building material.

Entry requirements

The entry requirements for a typical PhD in Built Environment usually involve a Bachelors and a Masters degree in a related subject. You’ll also need to submit a compelling research proposal detailing your study plans. Any professional experience in Built Environment or Architecture that you have will strengthen your application.

PhD in Built Environment funding options

In the UK, PhDs in Built Environment are funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), depending on the focus of your research. This funding will provide a tuition fee waiver and a living cost stipend. You may submit your own research proposal before being considered for funding, or apply for a project that already has funding attached.

It’s also possible to apply for a PhD loan to help with the costs of a doctorate in Built Environment (although this can’t be combined with Research Council funding). Other options for financial support include university scholarships, graduate teaching assistantships and charities.

If you’re considering a part-time PhD in Built Environment, it may also be worth asking your employer if they’re happy to sponsor you.

PhD in Built Environment careers

A PhD in Built Environment prepares you for employment in a range of industrial sectors, from construction and civil engineering to architectural practice and urban consultancy work. It also provides you with a great platform to begin a full-time career in research or university teaching.

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Ensuring carbon savings occur in practice: Consequential life cycle assessment of construction materials

PhD in Civil Engineering. Full time. The University of Bath Institute for Sustainability and the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero are inviting applications for the following funded PhD project commencing in October 2023. Read more

Optimising the energy and ventilation performance of double skin facades in extreme climates (On campus-Dubai)

Building façades play an important role in protecting indoor environments and transforming the occupant experience. Conventional façades, if not designed appropriately can risk leading in to a high Energy Use Intensity (EUI), increased infiltration and thermal discomfort. Read more

Scholarships in Place-based Thinking and Making

In the last few years, the concept of place-based thinking and making has been of growing interest. This has accelerated following emergence from lockdown, which had a detrimental impact on the economy of culture, especially the arts. Read more

Socio-techno-economic feasibility of floating bifacial (double-sided) solar photovoltaic panels

  Research Group: Institute of Sustainable Built Environment
Project Ref. JWS2023-MGUL. The project aims to investigate the potential of bifacial photovoltaics (PV) in floating PV plants. Floating PV are an emerging technology where a solar PV system is placed on a body of water and can be deployed as an alternative to land-based solar farms in areas where land is scarce. Read more

The impact of positive soundscapes in indoor built environments

  Research Group: Institute of Sustainable Built Environment
Project Ref. JWS2023-LG. Acoustics research at Heriot-Watt University aims at integrating engineering and perceptual approaches to reduce noise in the built environment and improve quality of life. Read more

Mechanical, Physical and Chemical Properties of Historic and New Earthen Construction

  Research Group: Institute of Sustainable Built Environment
Project Ref. JWS2023-CK. Historically, earthen construction was the most widely used form of building across the world, including adobe, mudwall, cob and rammed earth. Read more

Low energy alternative binders for low carbon contemporary architectural design & repair of cultural heritage buildings

  Research Group: Institute of Sustainable Built Environment
Project Ref. JWS2023-AF. Lime has been used successfully for many centuries and is an essential repair material for the sympathetic conservation of the built heritage. Read more

Building Intergenerational Age-Friendly Cities and Communities

  Research Group: The Urban Institute
Project Ref. JWS2023-RW. The World Health Organisation Age-Friendly Cities and Communities agenda has provided a framework for the development of cities and communities that enable social participation, independence and ageing-in-place. Read more

Measuring the impact of urban form on quality of life

This PhD position aims to map, quantify and compare the performance of different urban forms in our built environment in relation to a number of established aspects of quality of life (poverty, health, energy use, recycling rates, car ownership, noise and air pollution, active travel rates, identity etc… ) and to discuss the implications of findings on policy and practice. Read more

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