PhD studentship: Deep Decarbonisation: The Role of Governance by Evaluation (based at University of East Anglia)
The debate on social transformations has blossomed in the last decade. But which actors have the ‘agency’ to shape their direction and speed? In the UK, one body which performs this role is the Committee on Climate Change (CCC). It engages in a softer, less direct from of ‘governance by evaluation’. As the UK embarks upon accelerated decarbonisation commensurate with 1.5 degrees of warming, this PhD project will provide the first investigation of the role(s) of evaluation in transformational decarbonisation.
Deadline: 16th May, 2019.
PhD studentship: 'Moments of change’ as opportunities to leverage sustainable lifestyles (based at Cardiff University)
Recent scientific reports emphasise the pressing need to change lifestyles in order to tackle climate change; but changing behaviour is challenging, particularly because many everyday actions that contribute to causing climate change are habitual and resistant to change. ‘Moments of change’ are short-term disruptions to routines that can mark a turning point in someone’s life, and can include: life-course changes (e.g. pregnancy); technological adoption (e.g. heat pumps); experience of climate-related events (e.g. floods); and large-scale political or infrastructural disruption (e.g., Brexit). This project will integrate sociological, political, socio-technical and psychological understandings of moments of change, and apply this interdisciplinary understanding to everyday actions of individuals that are particularly impactful for climate change (diet, mobility, heating, consumption). The project will combine insights from secondary analysis of cohort surveys with primary data collected through interviews, focus groups and cross-cultural surveys, to examine impacts on climate change attitudes and behaviour of different forms of disruption (e.g., life-course, environmental), and their implications for emission trajectories and resilience to climate impacts. Candidates should have skills in quantitative methods, and ideally some experience of or interest in conducting mixed-methods research, in psychology or a related social science field.
This position has now closed.
PhD studentship: The role of research culture, practice and choices in pursuit of sustainability and climate change mitigation (based at Cardiff University)
This PhD project will examine the cultures, practices and choices within the academic community that affect whether research programmes are themselves in line with a low-carbon and sustainable ethos. The project will reveal the extent to which sustainability and climate change research is effectively challenging academic and societal norms around high-emitting activities such as diet, mobility, and material consumption. The PhD candidate will set out to uncover assumptions about research practice that may be unstated or largely invisible to those working in research and higher education. They will explore the synergies, tensions and overlaps among different roles that researchers occupy, as well as the wider sustainability strategies within Cardiff University and other university and research sites. The PhD will consider research practices at multiple levels, including individual, group, and organisational contexts. The research is likely to use mixed (quantitative and qualitative) methods, such as individual interviews, participant observation and ethnographic approaches, practitioner surveys and the measurement of carbon emissions. The research is intended to drive forward best practice in the establishment of a low-carbon research culture, and to foster in-depth reflection on the role of the social and natural sciences in societal transformation. Ideally, candidates will have some experience of and an interest in mixed methods research, and a background or interest in social or sustainability sciences.
This position has now closed.
Photo credit: John M.