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Supporting Decarbonisation through effective utilisation of our oceans

   Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences

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  Dr Adam Sobey  No more applications being accepted  Competition Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

Supervisory Team:   Adam Sobey and Laila Ait Bihi Ouali

Project description

Ships are a vital part of world trade, carrying >90% of products, due to their efficiency. This leads to a large percentage of the world’s CO2 emissions and means that we are heavily dependent on shipping’s resilience for secure trade routes. The large carrying capacity of ships entails economies of scale and, unlike railways, require less initial infrastructure investments: this generates benefits both in terms of welfare, sustainability and costs. Therefore, maximising our ocean’s usage for trade is vital to foster a sustainable economy through efficient and resilient trade. This aim is in line with several Sustainable Development Goals (SDG8, SDG11, SDG13).

This PhD will therefore understand how shipping, ports and land transport can best work together in the UK to support the decarbonisation of goods’ transport. We will use tools, including Game Theory and Econometrics, to understand different future scenarios (increased use of the coasts, changes in contracts or different fuel scenarios) and how shipping can be most efficient to reduce waste and emissions.

The candidate will combine tools from transport economics, statistics, supply chain theory and maritime engineering, to explore shipping networks to optimise the behaviour of ships and understand how we can provide more resilient, efficient and cheaper trade routes. The analyses will rely on empirical data, statistical models (e.g., causal inference) and agent-based modelling. It will leave a toolkit that can be used to interrogate how changes in legislation, technologies, and foreign policy will affect the UKs most efficient approach to world trade.

Supervision will be provided by Adam Sobey in the Maritime Engineering group and Laila Ait Bihi Ouali in the Transportation Research group at the University of Southampton. In addition you will work closely with the Marine and Maritime group, in the Data-Centric Engineering Programme in The Alan Turing Institute, the UK’s national AI institute.

We are looking for a driven candidate with expertise in, or interest in learning about: maritime transport, maritime engineering, shipping logistics and computer science. We will want you to help us grow the network of partners through the project using early research to generate wider interest from the maritime industries and those who use shipping to transport goods. We’d particularly like to see candidates interested in making real world changes to reduce maritime emissions through development of world-leading fundamental approaches in maritime logistics. 

Entry Requirements

A very good undergraduate degree (at least a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent).

Closing date: applications should be received no later than 25th June for standard admissions, but later applications may be considered depending on the funds remaining in place.

 Funding: Tuition Fees and a stipend of £15,285 tax-free per annum for up to 3 years, this scheme will NOT support non-UK/EU students.

 How To Apply

Applications should be made online. Select programme type (Research), 2022/23, Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering, next page select “PhD Engineering & Environment (Full time)”. In Section 2 of the application form you should insert the name of the supervisor Adam Sobey

Applications should include:

Curriculum Vitae

Two reference letters

Degree Transcripts to date

Apply online:

For further information please contact: [Email Address Removed]

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