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Physical Geography PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK

We have 27 Physical Geography PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK






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We have 27 Physical Geography PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK

PhD in Physical Geography

PhD students in Physical Geography focus the natural environment, including the Earth's landforms, climate, and ecosystems. It is one of two main branches of Geography, the other being Human Geography – which studies the interaction between humans and their environment.

By the end of your PhD, you’ll complete an extended dissertation which should make a significant original contribution to the field.

What’s it like to study a PhD in Physical Geography?

Most of your time will be spent conducting independent research. This is likely to have a large field work component, but you may also carry out lab-based experiments, analyse data collections or use remote sensing technologies such as satellite imagery.

Some popular research areas include:

  • Glaciers and ice sheets
  • Volcanic activity
  • Natural disasters and environmental hazards
  • Coastal erosion
  • Desertification

Alongside your research, you may be required to attend additional training and help with undergraduate teaching. You may also have the chance to present at academic conferences and publish your work in journals.

There are numerous advertised PhD projects available in Physical Geography, but you also have the option of designing your own project.

PhD in Physical Geography entry requirements

The minimum entry requirement for PhD projects in Geography is usually a 2:1 Bachelors degree in a relevant discipline, though a Masters degree is sometimes required. Applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis, so it’s likely that a postgraduate qualification will be an advantage, even if it is not required.

PhD in Physical Geography funding options

PhDs in Physical Geography are usually funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), which provides studentships covering tuition fees and living costs. Advertised Psychology PhDs will often have studentships attached. Students proposing their own research project may be able to apply for a studentship after being accepted onto a programme.

Many Human Geography PhD programmes, however, will only accept self-funded students. Options for independently financing your PhD include the UK government’s doctoral loan, part-time employment alongside your studies and support from charities or trusts.

PhD in Physical Geography careers

Many people will go on to pursue a research career after completing a PhD in Physical Geography, however you will also be well-qualified to seek work in numerous other fields such as environmental planning, disaster management, conservation and climate policy.

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Longevity of NBS: Analysing Longer-Term River & Floodplain Restoration Case Studies in the UK

Landscape change and climate change over the Anthropocene have resulted in increased risk to river and floodplain ecosystems and to catchment stakeholders through increased flood and drought impacts Conventional methods of engineering are unsustainable as longer-term solutions in most instances; thus novel Natural based solutions (NBS) are promoted as potential alternatives. Read more

The challenges of automated big data fusion to bring the National Geospatial Database into the third dimension - Ordnance Survey

This project is part of the. Centre for Doctoral Training in Geospatial Systems. The successful candidate will be co-supervised by academics from within the School of Engineering at Newcastle University and work alongside our external partner. Read more

Greenlandic tidewater glacier response to long-term climate change

 This project will model the advance and retreat of major Greenlandic tidewater glaciers over the last 1000 years, and forecast their sensitivity to future climate change for the next 200 years. Read more

Understanding glacier dynamic change and iceberg risk evolution in Greenland

Project summary. Greenland’s marine terminating glaciers are undergoing rapid change, though how this impacts iceberg risks to settlements and current/future social and economic activities in fjords is currently poorly understood. Read more

Uncovering adaptation and mitigation strategies to reduce pollutant propagation in coastal areas: countering the effects of human activities.

Coventry University (CU) is inviting applications from highly motivated, suitably qualified graduates for a fully funded PhD studentship in experimental and numerical modelling of pollutant transport in coastal areas in order to optimize low-cost sustainable solutions to reduce the impacts caused by human activity and climate change. Read more

Applying the concept of “Value of Information” within earthquake loss modelling for insurance purposes

Successful earthquake insurance, both for the property owner and the (re)insurance company providing the cover, relies on an accurate assessment of the property's expected future financial loss, which itself depends on the earthquake hazard and the property's vulnerability to that hazard. Read more

PhD studentship in Environmental Engineering: New Scour Protection Measures to Improve Bridge Resilience

Overview. Bridges are essential elements of infrastructure the world over and their maintenance and protection is critical to ensure public safety and to facilitate travel within and between the places people live and work. Read more

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