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Mobility futures and the social lives of batteries

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Friday, April 24, 2020
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

3 year, fully funded PhD opportunity for UK and EU Citizens, based in the Leverhulme Material Social Futures Doctoral Training Centre, and Sociology Department at Lancaster University, UK. Start date 1st October 2020.

The Leverhulme Material Social Futures Programme and Lancaster Sociology are seeking a candidate for this exciting PhD opportunity.

The position will suit applicants from a range of backgrounds including Sociology, Science and Technology Studies, Anthropology, Geography or Material Culture Studies. Experience of qualitative and ethnographic methods, and an interest in one of the following fields is desirable: mobilities, social practice theory, sociology of the future, new materialisms, science and technology studies.

The successful candidate will be interested in decarbonising travel and have a willingness to learn about a range of social futures methods, to explore futures of low carbon mobility in different places (e.g. rural, urban; different countries). For example, these futures would involve ways of living without the combustion engine car, but could involve new mobility services; new social practices including delivering, charging, picking up and dropping off; new forms of intermodal travel; new types, shapes and sizes of vehicle; novel vehicle ecologies; intermodal travel; transformed relationships between forms of mobility and everyday life.The candidate will explore the implications of different possible futures for what the battery is and does, and contrast this with the conceptualisations of ‘the battery’ that underpin contemporary material science.

Within Lancaster Sociology, the Centre for Mobilities Research will provide a rich intellectual home for the project, and The Institute for Social Futures will be a supportive environment for the methodological development of the work. Through the Material Social Futures doctoral training centre, there will be many opportunities to engage in dialogue with material scientists (both staff and students), and with a thematically linked PhD in Chemistry on sustainable battery materials. The candidate will also take part in a specially developed MSF training programme that is delivered by colleagues from across social sciences, humanities, material sciences and engineering.

Please send enquiries about the vacancy and applications by email to Dr Nicola Spurling ().

Funding Notes

3 year, fully funded PhD opportunity for UK and EU Citizens, based in the Leverhulme Material Social Futures Doctoral Training Centre, and Sociology Department at Lancaster University, UK.

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