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People centred risk and well-being engagement and communication transitions in fragile neighbourhoods (Advert Reference: FAC19/EE/GES/COLLINS)

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Sunday, December 01, 2019
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

In association with the GCRF urban risk transitions hub, ‘Tomorrow’s Cities’ and the Disaster and Development Network (DDN) of the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences, this study will develop an area of focussed inquiry around action data and engagement processes that address multi-hazard risk reduction. The PhD must contribute to understanding, methodology and impact of multi-levelled social engagement processes. It will generate evidence of what works in reducing vulnerabilities to multi-hazard environments amongst neighbourhoods exposed to poor health and well-being. The context of the research is a rethinking of the nature of impactful disaster risk and resilience engagements whereby data is a voice to improve health and well-being risk reduction via combinations of risk informed local level social infrastructure and sensitised policy steering environments.

The means to identifying impactful action data amongst local level social infrastructures in multi-hazard environments will be developed alongside a UN classified DAC country neighbourhood that would link to the Nairobi City hub of the GCRF project. PhD field-research may take place in Nairobi or similar sub-saharan Africa neighbourhoods. The GCRF hub will also link it to other DAC country neighbourhoods where the wider GCRF hub is operating. The PhD research will contribute to concept development and identification of some of the means to locally grounded ownership of multi-hazard risk and resilience engagement and communication. This will ideally involve poorest area school and community health environments to better understand solution pathways for tomorrow’s citizens in dynamic multi-hazard contexts.

Whilst grounded in local level field-work, this PhD will also need to link to global level policy environments aiming to seek ways to engage locally grounded action data to progress towards UN SFDRR 2015-2030 targets. The PhD will consequently play a role in Northumbria’s engagement with GCRF, the United Nations, NGOs, governmental and community based organisations.

The Principal Supervisor for this project is Professor Andrew Collins.

Eligibility and How to Apply:

Please note eligibility requirement:
• Academic excellence of the proposed student i.e. 2:1 (or equivalent GPA from non-UK universities [preference for 1st class honours]) in Geography or a related subject appropriate to the project; or a Masters (preference for Merit or above); or APEL evidence of substantial practitioner achievement.
• Appropriate IELTS score, if required.
• Applicants cannot apply for this funding if currently engaged in Doctoral study at Northumbria or elsewhere.

This project is well suited to motivated and hard-working candidates with a keen interest and experience of facilitating people centred solutions to health related disaster risk and resilience in contexts of extreme poverty in Africa.

For further details of how to apply, entry requirements and the application form, see

Please note: Applications that do not include a research proposal of approximately 1,000 words (not a copy of the advert), or that do not include the advert reference (e.g. FAC19/EE/GES/COLLINS) will not be considered.

Start Date: 1 March 2020

Northumbria University takes pride in, and values, the quality and diversity of our staff. We welcome applications from all members of the community. The University holds an Athena SWAN Bronze award in recognition of our commitment to improving employment practices for the advancement of gender equality and is a member of the Euraxess

Funding Notes

The studentship is available to Students Worldwide, and covers full fees and a full stipend, paid for three years at RCUK rates (for 2019/0, this is £15,009 pa).


Collins, A.E. (2019) ‘Advancing Disaster and Conflict Risk Reduction’, in Brauch, H.G., Oswald Spring, U., Collins, A.E. and Serrano Oswald, S.E. (Eds.) Climate Change, Disasters, Sustainability Transition and Peace in the Anthropocene, Springer. pp.7-26.
Abedin, A., Collins, A.E., Hababi, U. and Shaw, R. (2019) ‘Climate change, water scarcity, and health adaptation in southwestern coastal Bangladesh’, International Journal of Disaster Risk Science, 10:1, pp.28-42.
Collins, A.E. (2018) ‘Advancing the disaster and development paradigm’, International Journal of Disaster Risk Science, 9:4, pp.486-95.
Collins, A.E. (2017) ‘Applications of disaster risk reduction principles and operational mechanisms to migration in contexts of instability’, in Sudmeier-Rieux, K., Jaboyedoff, M., Fernandez, M., Penna, I. and JC Gaillard (Eds.) Identifying Emerging Issues in Disaster Risk Reduction, Migration, Climate Change and Sustainable Development’, Springer. pp.127-44.
Mavhura, E., Manyena, S.B. and Collins, A.E. (2017) ‘Measuring social vulnerability in context: the case of Muzarabani in Zimbabwe’, Geoforum, 86, pp.103-114.
Collins, A.E., Tatano, H., James, W., Wannous, Cl, Takara, K., Murray, V., Scawthorn, C., Mori, J., Aziz, S., Mosalam, K.M., Hochrainer-Stigler, S., Alcántara-Ayala, I., Krausmann, E., Li, W.S., Cruz, A.M., Samaddar, S., De-Groeve, T., Ono, Y., Berryman, K., Suzuki, K., Parry, M.A., McGowran, P., and Rees, J.G. (2017) ‘The 3rd Global Summit of Research Institutes for Disaster Risk Reduction: Expanding the Platform for Bridging Science and Policy Making’, International Journal of Disaster Risk Science, 8:2, pp.224-230.
Collins, A.E., Jones, S., Manyena, B. and Jayawickrama, J. (Eds.)(2015) Hazards, Risks and Disasters in Society, Hazards Risks and Disasters Series, Elsevier, Oxford. ISBN 978-0-12-396451-9 (23 chapters, 405 pages)
Collins, A.E. (2015) ‘Beyond experiential learning in disaster and development communication’ in: Egner, H., Schorch, M. and Voss, M. (Eds.) Learning and Calamities: Practices, Interpretations, Patterns, London: Routledge, pp.56-76.

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