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Building social-ecological resilience to maintain a viable fishing sector in the UK - a key response to climate change (OP2248)

   Faculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering

  Dr Sarah Coulthard  Monday, January 24, 2022  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Newcastle United Kingdom Climate Science Data Analysis Ecology Environmental Biology Marine Biology

About the Project

The context of the Anthropocene presents a new set of challenges where the interconnections between people and the environment become ever more dynamic and significant (Folke et al 2021). Social-ecological resilience, defined as ‘the capacity to adapt or transform in the face of change…in ways that continue to support human well-being (Biggs et al. 2015), is a highly interdisciplinary framework that has been widely applied to study people-environment interactions across a diversity of contexts. Nurturing resilience is also a significant public policy goal: achieving a ‘resilient and increasingly viable fishing sector in the UK’ is a strategic priority for the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) who are partnered in this research project. This project applies a social-ecological resilience framework to understand how climate change will impact the UK fisheries sector and to assess the capacities of different fishing sectors to adapt to change. The project will utilise publicly available data such as the CEFAS Data Archives (FIshDAC) and MEDIN network. Primary data on adaptive capacity will be collected as part of a North-East fisheries case study. Staff at the MMO and Newcastle University will help connect the student to existing citizen science initiatives, including ‘citizen observatories’ and assist in piloting techniques with fisheries stakeholders in the north-east.

Funding Notes

This project is part of the NERC ONE Planet DTP. Each of our studentship awards include 3.5 years of fees (Home/EU), an annual living allowance (£15,650) and a Research Training Support Grant (for travel, consumables, etc).
Home and International applicants (inc. EU) are welcome to apply. Following the UKRI announcement regarding their new 30% UKRI international recruitment policy (to take effect from September 2021) both Newcastle University, and Northumbria University, have agreed to pay the international fee difference for all International applicants (inc. EU) who are awarded a DTP studentship. Interviews will take place in February 2022.
How to apply: View Website


Folke, C., et al. 2021. Resilience: Now more than ever. Ambio, pp.1-4;
Biggs, R. et al (eds). 2015. Principles for building resilience: sustaining ecosystem services in social-ecological systems. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

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