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Living and Future Tools for Risk Assessment: An Examination of the Possibilities for Fusion

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  • Full or part time
    Prof G Mythen
    Dr H Assa
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description


This is a project within the multi-disciplinary EPSRC and ESRC Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) on Quantification and Management of Risk & Uncertainty in Complex Systems & Environments, within the Institute for Risk and Uncertainty. The studentship is granted for 4 years and includes, in the first year, a Master in Decision Making under Risk & Uncertainty. The project includes extensive collaboration with prime industry to build an optimal basis for employability.

Outline of Study

The Paris Risk Group will partner with the Liverpool Institute of Risk and Uncertainty to commission a study which will map the social economic methodologies and decision support tools used in risk management agencies. The key objectives of the PhD are to evaluate procedures of assessment in risk management agencies across a range of domains, including health, food, the environment, security and the economy. This will be achieved by embedded observation and analysis within the public and private sectors in order to examine the range of risk based decision analytic tools in use. A particular focus will be oriented toward the extent to which social science methods of risk analysis are utilized within such contexts and the possibilities that exist for integrating social and natural sciences modes of risk analysis. The findings of the study will enhance knowledge regarding the range of depth of social sciences methods presently deployed in risk assessments and enable knowledge transfer regarding state of the art methods and tools across organisations.

Scientific advice is traditionally sought to help decision-makers. In the context of increasingly complex issues, one of the specific challenges is to take into account the socio-economic implications of the issues at stake and of the decisions taken. The Paris Risk Group ( is a network which brings together social scientists working for or with organisations involved in risk assessment and management. Its overall goal is to promote the use of social sciences alongside more traditional scientific disciplines in the evolution of methods of risk assessment. During the 2015 Paris Risk Group workshop numerous speakers presented applications of decision support tools, including socio-economic analysis, in the context of risk assessment and risk management. These presentations showed that the tools and methods used varied amongst risk agencies and issues. In order to develop common methodologies and built capacities, the Paris Risk Group wishes to collaborate in a study to map the decision support tools embracing social, economic and ethical aspects used in risk assessment and risk management agencies.

For further information regarding this project, please go to:

The project requires a candidate that is proficient in both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies and is able to work at the interface of the social and the natural sciences. Applicants should hold at least an undergraduate degree with a strong methods component and have achieved - or be predicted to achieve - a first class degree. An interdisciplinary degree would be advantageous but is not essential and proven capacity to synthesize complex information is required. A Masters level degree in a relevant area would be a distinct advantage.

Funding Notes

The PhD Studentship (Tuition fees + stipend of £ 13,726 annually over 4 years) is available for Home/EU students. In addition, a budget for use in own responsibility will be provided.

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