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Re-imagining deindustrialised waterways as tourist destinations using placemaking. A case study of the River Clyde.

   Glasgow School for Business and Society

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  Dr Nick Davies  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Glasgow Caledonian University/ The Glasgow School for Business and Society

Project Reference Number: GSBS/2022/006

Supervisory Team:

Director of Studies: Name: Dr Nick Davies

Email: [Email Address Removed]

GCU Research Online URL: (essential)

Second Supervisor:Name: Dr Maren Viol

Email: [Email Address Removed]

GCU Research Online URL: (essential)

Third Supervisor:Dr Pauline Bell


GCU Research Online URL: (essential)


There is a need to explore and understand the potential for dispersion of opportunities for tourism development along the length of rivers in deindustrialised towns and cities. Often this development centres around small spatially concentrated city centre areas. These towns and cities have been developed around rivers due to the suitability in establishing trade routes, commerce and communities. Since deregulation of industry alongside rivers in Scotland, such as the river Clyde there is a need to identify how destinations can best manage urban blue spaces for tourism potential. In recent years, waterfront and riverside communities around the globe have acknowledged the role of water in shaping their urban landscapes and the cultures of their communities. 

In the case of the Firth of Clyde and the West coast of Scotland the importance of the waterway has been acknowledged and the impact of its industrial heritage on the people and places that line the coast; the Firth remains under-developed as a tourism destination and in many of the Clyde communities still dealing with the river’s deindustrialisation, residents continue to see the Clyde in their rear-view rather than as an opportunity for social and economic development.

The aim of this project is to identify opportunities to utilise more urban blue spaces for communities, and to establish tourism resilient communities. The research will seek to understand how to establish placemaking through community engagement. Through participation in this collaborative research project, communities, tourism, culture and heritage enterprises will work together to apply to re-imagine and re-develop a new destination identity for deindustrialised urban waterways. This will be a case study of the River Clyde that will establish a model of best practice for creating tourism development opportunities along deindustrialised waterways. Candidates are requested to submit a more detailed proposal (of a maximum of 2000 words) on the project area as part of the application. 

How to Apply 

This project is available as a 3 years full-time PhD study programme with expected start date of 1 October 2022 

Applicants should possess an honours degree (2:1 or above) and/or Masters degree in a related area of study, demonstrating sufficient evidence of academic/research ability in their chosen research area. 

Candidates are encouraged to contact the research supervisors for the project before applying. 

Candidates are required to submit a detailed proposal (of a maximum 2000 words) 

Applicants should apply for their preferred intake date using the Business and Management links via the Application Process page. 

The closing date for applications is Monday the 21st February 2022.

Applicants shortlisted for the PhD project will be contacted for an interview within four weeks from the closing date.  

Please send any other enquires regarding your application to: [Email Address Removed] 

Funding Notes

A range of funded studentships and fees only scholarships are available to the best candidates. 
For students commencing their studies in 2022/23:
The studentship is worth £20,400 per year for three years. The studentship covers payment of tuition fees (£4,560 for Home/RUK students or £15,700 for EU/International students) plus an annual stipend of £15,840 for Home/RUK students or an annual scholarship of £4,700 for EU/International students.
EU/International candidates of outstanding calibre may be awarded a studentship of £31,540 per year for three years. The International Enhanced Scholarship covers payment of tuition fees (£15,700) plus an annual stipend of £15,840.
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