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Thinking forward through the past: Linking science, social science and the humanities to inform the sustainable reduction of endemic disease in British livestock farming

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  • Full or part time
    Prof N Hanley
    Prof R Kao
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

Endemic livestock diseases pose a major impediment to livestock health, welfare, productivity and profit. They can also potentially undermine human health by encouraging antibiotic use and antimicrobial resistance. These diseases are not new. Many of the tools to tackle them already exist, and yet they remain a problem. The project within which this PhD research will be undertaken aims to explain why, and to work out what could be done about them.

Cutting across the traditionally separate realms of nature and culture, science and society, human and animal, past, present and future, a 13-strong team of experts from four disciplines (history, geography, economics and epidemiology) will study two exemplar endemic conditions: Bovine Viral Diarrhoea, and lameness in cattle and sheep. Foregrounding the frequently neglected human element as a key influence on disease dissemination and control, the research team will work closely with livestock producers, consumers, expert advisors and policy makers, to investigate the connected pasts and presents of these diseases, and how they relate to changes in farming systems, communities, and the wider world. Findings will be used to develop better predictions of disease in the future, and to advise on its management in policy and practice.

This PhD is focussed on the use of economic methods (notably stated preference choice modelling) to investigate the preferences of (i) UK consumers and (ii) UK farmers for management options which vary in terms of implications for farm animal health and welfare. It will suit a candidate with a strong background training in applied micro economics, agricultural or environmental economics, or someone with good quantitative skills in statistics who is interested in learning about stated preference modelling.

The successful candidate will join a new team in environmental and one health economics within the Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine, led by Professor Nick Hanley. There are opportunities for training in quantitative modelling approaches, survey design, more general aspects of environmental economics, and simulation/optimisation modelling, as well as in stated preference methods.

The successful candidate will have a good undergraduate honours degree (1st or 2.1) in a relevant subject. A Masters or MRes qualification is an advantage, but not a requirement.

The PhD student will be based in Glasgow, but will work closely with all other members of the project team:
Professor Abigail Woods, Kings College London
Dr Lewis Holloway, University of Hull
Professor Rowland Kao, University of Edinburgh
Dr Amy Proctor, Newcastle University
Prof Karen Sayer, Leeds Trinity University

Please contact Nick Hanley ([Email Address Removed]) with all informal information requests.

When applying, please enter the project title in the programme description box in the application form.

Start date: September 1st 2018 or January 1st 2019

Funding Notes

A 3-year stipend of £18,419 will be offered in year 1, rising to £21,798 in year 3, along with fees at home/EU rates. All research costs will be covered by the project. Travel money for conference attendance (£1500) is also included.

How good is research at University of Glasgow in Agriculture, Veterinary and Food Science?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 38.80

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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