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Fully Funded 3.5-year PhD studentship: Economic and Econometric Modelling of the Regulatory and Environmental Determinants of the Cost of Water Service Provision

   School of Business and Economics

About the Project

Application details:

Reference number: SBE-DSMN20  

Start date of studentship: 01/10/2021

Closing date of advert: 15th June 2021

Interview date: TBC


Primary supervisor: Prof Dr David S Saal

Secondary supervisor: Dr Maria Nieswand


Would you like the opportunity to work on a PhD project which will help you to develop your skills as an applied economist and launch your career in research or industry, whilst working closely with industry managers to apply your research findings?

The successful applicant will develop conceptually and empirically robust econometric models that control for the impact of environmental, demographic, and regulatory challenges on the costs of water and waste water operations.  It will be supervised by both academics from Loughborough University’s Centre for Productivity and Performance and regulatory economists at Anglian Water, which is one of the UK’s largest water companies and a leader in managing and improving environmental performance.  Moreover, you will also work closely with Anglian’s managers and engineers to apply your successfully developed models to inform operational and strategic decision-making, including Anglian’s efforts to cost effectively meet stringent environmental standards and reduce carbon emissions.

If you are passionate about applying economic methods to model and understand the relationship between environmental performance and firm performance, this could be the perfect role for you. Moreover, while the PhD offers an excellent opportunity to develop an academic career,  the position would equally prepare you for a managerial, policy or consulting oriented career.  

Why Loughborough University?

Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014). In choosing Loughborough for your research, you will be based in the School of Business and Economics and be supervised within the Centre for Productivity and Performance  whose members are leaders in the theory and application of cost and performance modelling.

You will further benefit from comprehensive Doctoral College support,, including tailored careers advice, to help you succeed in your research and future career.


Find out more:

Entry requirements:

·        You should be interested in applying your quantitative skills to real world problems

·        Strong applicants with a 2:1 or 1st class Undergraduate Economics degree with a rigorous quantitative and data analysis training will be considered alongside candidates with a UK Master’s degree (or the international equivalent), ideally in economics or related quantitatively rigorous subjects.

·        Excellent communication skills

·        Flexibility and willingness to travel

·        Interest and capability in understanding the economic factors influencing costs,, developing econometric models, and sourcing  and working with the data necessary to develop strong empirical models .

·        English Language requirement of IELTS band 7.0 or above with not less than 7.0 in each component.

Contact details:

Name: Professor David Saal

Email address:

Telephone number:   +44 (0) 1509 227 123


How to apply:

Applications should be made online at Under programme name, select Business School  

Please quote reference number SBE-DSMN20

Funding Notes

Starting in October 2021, the studentship is for 3.5 years and provides a tax-free stipend of £15,285 p/a plus tuition fees at the UK/EU rate. To qualify for this full award, all applicants must meet the EPSRC eligibility criteria including the UK residency requirement. See View Website

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