University of Portsmouth Featured PhD Programmes
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The impacts of climate change on climate mitigation

Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering

Dr R Wood Friday, April 30, 2021 Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)
Manchester United Kingdom Climate Science Environmental Chemistry Environmental Engineering Architecture, Building & Planning Geography Rural Planning

About the Project

About the project:

The mitigation of climate change will involve significant changes to both infrastructure and people’s lifestyles. From increased active travel, diet and changes in the way we heat our homes lifestyle changes will be central to the successful mitigation of climate change. Similarly, much of our infrastructure will also be transformed to provide zero carbon services, from electric trains and cars to zero carbon electricity. Our current lifestyles and infrastructure are both vulnerable to weather events and shaped by experiences of the past climate. As climate changes the types and frequencies of the weather we experience will change too. While we have a good understanding of how climate change may impact our existing infrastructure and lifestyles, there is less known about how the actions necessary to mitigate climate change will be affected. This project will systematically identify how the impacts of climate change could affect the deployment and success of changes to both lifestyles and the infrastructure designed to mitigate climate change. It will identify mechanisms through which climate impacts influence mitigation activities, using climate impact data, creating a risk assessment including both quantitative analysis and qualitative analysis.


Project aims and objectives:

The project aim is to identify how the impacts of climate change (incl increased frequencies of intensive rainfall, changes in mean and extreme temperatures) could influence the successful delivery of decarbonization and how negative impacts can be avoided or minimized.


Research objectives:

·        To systematically identify the vulnerability of climate mitigation activities to climate impacts.

·        To apply climate impact data to assess the exposure of different mitigation activities to climate change.

·        To evaluate the relative magnitude of key risks or opportunities identified during the review using both quantitative and qualitative analysis.

·        Build relationships with the key stakeholders to establish co-production opportunities.

·        Make recommendations for stakeholders engaged in the delivery and deployment of mitigation activities on how to ‘climate proof’ their designs and strategies.


The PhD is part of the ‘visioning’ theme within the Centre for Climate Change and Social Transformation (CAST) and as such is designed to support our understanding of what low-carbon transformed futures look like.

Working within the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, CAST and with existing networks of stakeholders this PhD position is well placed to inform national and sub-national decarbonisation strategy in the UK and internationally.

Research Group:

The successful candidate will benefit from a place within the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research and the Centre for Climate Change and Social Transformation, two world-leading centres for interdisciplinary climate change research. Sitting at the interface of science and policy, researchers within these centres work with business leaders, policy advisors, the media and the public to influence the design of climate policy. The Tyndall Centre and CAST offer highly supportive and stimulating research environments in which to study and connects PhD researchers to others within the UK. This means that the successful candidate will have access to unrivalled specialist expertise and opportunities to develop transferable skills to enhance their future employability. In addition, the University of Manchester offers an extensive training and development package, and support for the effective completion of a PhD. 

Candidates should have a good first degree in a science, social science or geography with exceptional written, numerical and analytical skills and an interest in climate change, low carbon lifestyles and sustainability. Experience with both qualitative and quantitative research methods is desirable. Additional University of Manchester entry requirements for PhD research degrees can be found at:


This research will take place within a highly interdisciplinary research centre, candidates are encouraged to apply from all academic backgrounds and will have the opportunity to steer the direction of the research. 

The successful candidate will ideally start by Sept/Oct 2021. Please send a CV and cover letter to before making a full application through the University of Manchester admissions department. 

As an equal opportunities employer, we welcome applications from all suitably qualified persons. As the School is committed to the principles of the Race Equality Charter Mark and Athena SWAN, we would particularly welcome applications from women and the black and minority ethnic (BME) community, who are both currently under-represented at this grade. All appointments will be made on merit.

Funding Notes

This 3.5 year studentship covers tuition fees at the Home fee rate and provides a tax-free stipend at the standard UKRI rate (£15,609 in the 2021/22 academic session) for a PhD starting in September 2021. EU and overseas students can apply but will need to source additional funding themselves to cover the difference between the tuition fee rates. Self-funded students interested in a relevant topic are also welcome to contact the supervisory team.

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