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Multispecies grasslands: Is this the solution to climate change and sustainable ruminant production systems?

   School of Biological Sciences

About the Project

The overall objective of Re-Livestock is to evaluate and mobilize the adoption of innovative practices applied cross-scale (animal, herd, farm, sector and region) to reduce GHG emissions from livestock farming systems and increase their capacity to deal with potential climate change impacts.

To reach our aim, Re-Livestock have brought together scientific expertise in Europe and Australia and across disciplines. Strong collaboration with industry stakeholders to identify the innovations and to co-design the validation will ensure relevance and maximize the adoption of best practices. National groups of farmers (case studies) and ‘stakeholder forums’ together with a ‘European multi-actor platform’ will allow for an engaged co-design of transition pathways whilst ‘learning from innovation networks’ will allow for the testing and sharing of latest innovative solutions. 

This studentship is part of an EU Horizon 2020 programme (ACRONYM: Re-Livestock). The goal of the programme is to explore ways to enhance the environmental sustainability of ruminant production systems, with a particular focus on reduced GHG emissions. Future ruminant livestock systems will be based on multispecies grasslands that deliver a range of ecosystem services. Therefore, the studentship will specifically: determine the impact of sward type on grazing efficiency, methane emissions and rumen microbial activity in dairy systems. To achieve this, sward, animal performance and methane emissions, in response to sward botanical composition and management will be measured.

This is a unique PhD opportunity as it allows the student to work across Queen's University Belfast and the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI) and to extend their network of expertise through the Re-Livestock project involving partners from across the world. It will also provide the student with highly sought-after skills in Animal Science and Microbiology, providing strong training for a future in science.

Skills/experience required: BSc Agriculture, Animal Science, or a closely related discipline with a minimum of a 2.1. An MSc in an aligned discipline is also desirable.

Start date: ASAP

Duration: 4 years

HOW TO APPLY: All applications must be submitted to the School of Biological Sciences via:

Funding Notes

This project has EU funding. The successful applicant will be awarded a 4-year studentship which includes a monthly stipend.
Applicants must qualify for "Home" fees at Queen's University Belfast:
- UK national and ordinarily resident in UK for three years prior to September 2022;
- Non-UK national ordinarily resident in UK for three years prior to September 2022, with settled status or indefinite leave to remain;
- Irish national resident in ROI (provisional - subject to publication of Northern Ireland Assembly student fees regulations).
For non-EU nationals, the main purpose of residence must not have been to receive full-time education.
For further information, please see: View Website

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