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Leverhulme TRANSFORM PhD Studentship: Climate Memory from Environmental Data Archives: An Exploration of Slow Change, Extreme Events and Human Adaptation

Global Sustainable Development and Liberal Arts

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Prof Joanne Garde-Hansen , Prof J Porto de Albuquerque No more applications being accepted Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
Warwick United Kingdom Climate Science Geophysics Geology

About the Project

Location: Coventry

Hours: Full-time

Start date: 1st October 2021

Project start date: 1st October 2021

Duration: 4 years


This studentship is supported by the Leverhulme Doctoral Scholarship programme TRANSFORM: Transformations of Human-Environment Interactions to Sustainable Development. TRANSFORM provides a new doctoral research training pathway for sustainability science at Warwick, offering PhD scholarships to train a new generation of transdisciplinary leaders who are able to address current and future sustainability challenges.

You will be trained in transdisciplinary methods, enabling you to draw on skills from multiples disciplines and work effectively and equitably with non-academic partners to deliver impactful sustainable development research. Scholarship holders will also benefit from tailored skills training, masterclasses and a vibrant research community.


This proposed research is part of a growing body of work, such as Walshe et al’s ‘Helices of Disaster Memory’ 2020 [online] that argue for the need ‘to account for the historical processes fundamental to understanding vulnerability’ which will have ‘implications for disaster risk reduction (including climate change adaptation)’. The socio-cultural accessibility and narrative integration of science archives are fundamental for understanding the slower and incremental as well as invisible geological and environmental changes. While environmental phenomena have been memorialised, remembered and recorded through different forms of art, culture and media, the integration of such cultural understandings with data from environmental science archives is hardly attempted. Yet, environmental data stored in these archives could be effectively connected with other forms of cultural, social and digital memory to afford new climate memories and reveal digital geographies of human-environment interactions.

This project would focus on long-term environmental, scientific and cultural remembrance and draw multiple-archival and data analysis into a conversation with professionals and communities that seek to better understand and uncover the long and slow change in the relationships between humans and climate. A key resource will be such archives as the National Geological Repository and the National Geoscience Data Centre hosted at the British Geological Survey. These collect and preserve environmental science data and information, making them available for the long-term to a wide range of users and communities but they rarely connect with social, cultural and media archives.


The applicant must have research interest in climate change and digital memories and should have a wide range of skills acquired in a relevant master’s degree (e.g. media studies, history, human geography and cognate fields). Strong archival and bibliographic skills are essential and a passion for history and culture is desirable. It is also desirable that the candidate has aptitude and interest in analysing environmental data using both qualitative and quantitative methods, as well as good communication skills.

How to Apply

For full details and application form, please see here:

Funding Notes

Annual stipend will be £15,609pa, for 4 years rising each year in line with UKRI rate. Tuition fees will be paid at the home rate but a waiver for the difference between home and overseas fees may be awarded to an exceptional overseas candidate.
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