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Decarbonisation and sustainable city in the UK: Synergies, trade-offs and prioritisation of interventions

   Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences

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  Prof Subhes Battacharyya  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

This proposal focuses on how UK cities can manage the climate emergency in the context of sustainable development.


School of Sustainability, Civil and Environmental Engineering

Project Description

The overarching question this research intends to answer is: How can cities effectively manage the climate emergency by realising synergies and managing trade-offs between climate goals and other SDGs? Three sub-questions will explore the issues raised above in greater detail and will focus on the identification of interactions, quantification of synergies and trade-offs and a prioritisation framework using the multi-criteria decision-making methodology. 

A combination of quantitative and qualitative analysis will be employed in this research. The SDG Interlinkages Tool will be used to visualise the interactions. Primary data collected from the city-level stakeholders will be used to identify the synergies and trade-offs between decarbonisation and SDG interventions. A multi-criteria decision-making framework will then be used to prioritise the investments in desirable interventions.

The research programme will deliver 1) interactions, synergies and trade-offs between climate action plans and other SDGs at the city level; 2) a framework that allows prioritisation of identified interventions and investment options and 3) a city case study where the framework is applied.

How to Apply

Open to UK and International students starting in October 2023.

Applications should be submitted via the Environment and Sustainability PhD programme page , but please note the closing date for this studentship is Friday 6th January 2023.  . In place of a research proposal you should upload a document stating the title of the projects (up to 2) that you wish to apply for and the name(s) of the relevant supervisor. You must upload your full CV and any transcripts of previous academic qualifications. You should enter ’Faculty Funded Competition’ under funding type.


The studentship will provide a stipend at UKRI rates (currently £17,668 for 2022/23) and tuition fees for 3.5 years. An additional bursary of £1700 per annum for the duration of the studentship will be offered to exceptional candidates.

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