Biosciences: Fully Funded PhD Scholarship at Swansea: Seagrass Restoration

Biosciences: Fully Funded PhD Scholarship at Swansea: Seagrass Restoration

  • Phd

  • Full cost of UK tuition fees and an annual stipend

  • 6 May 2022

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Funding provider: Swansea University and Welsh Government

Subject areas: Ecology, Environmental Science, Mathematical Biology

Project start date:

  • 1 July 2022 (Enrolment open from mid-June)

Supervisors: Dr James Bull (Swansea University), Dr Richard Unsworth (Swansea University), Professor Dylan Childs (Sheffield University), Simon Baldwin (Welsh Government)

Aligned programme of study: PhD in Biological Sciences

Mode of study: Full-time

Project description:

Seagrass underpins ecosystem services including coastline stabilisation, ‘blue carbon’ storage, biodiversity, and nurseries for 20% of the world’s major fisheries but is critically threatened, with 30% lost globally since 1980 and 90% around the UK. Restoration of seagrass is essential for green recovery and in Wales’s Programme for Government. Swansea is a leading UK centre for seagrass research and delivering successful restoration across the UK. To upscale, effective identification of sites for restoration is vital, achieved through Habitat Suitability Modelling (HSM), and we have developed a standard HSM for UK seagrass as part of the NERC-funded project ‘Restoration of Seagrass for Ocean Wealth (ReSOW)’.

Key challenges addressed in this PhD project are:

  • A shortcoming of standard HSMs is in linking environmental conditions with presence of existing populations. This identifies suitable habitat for mature populations but may not be appropriate for establishing new populations from seeds.
  • To deliver effective green recovery, statistical modelling (e.g., HSM) output must be developed into decision-making tools for stakeholders use.

We will utilise cutting-edge demographic and population dynamic models to develop an iterative and reciprocal process informing modelling and policy. Training will span biomathematical modelling, stakeholder consensus building, and policy interfacing.

Eligibility

Candidates must normally hold an undergraduate degree at 2.1 level in Biosciences or a related subject, or a master’s degree with a minimum overall grade at ‘Merit’ (or Non-UK equivalent as defined by Swansea University).

English Language requirements: If applicable – IELTS 6.0 overall (with at least 6.0 in each individual component) or Swansea recognised equivalent.

Due to funding restrictions, this scholarship is open to UK and EU based students only. EU Students must be eligible to receive the EU Transitional Bursary Scheme.

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Benefits

This scholarship covers the full cost of UK tuition fees and an annual stipend of £15,609.

Additional research expenses will also be available.

Application

Please visit our website for more information.

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