UCL Energy Institute delivers world-leading learning, research and policy support on the challenges of climate change and energy security. Our multidisciplinary research programme and strong industry links provide an excellent foundation for PhD study. Our graduates are employed by the world's foremost academic, industry and governmental institutions.
Modes and duration
Full-time students study for 37.5 hours per week. Part-time students normally attend half this amount. Research students are required to be in continuous attendance, apart from periods of leave.
Tuition fees (2021/22)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.
A minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor's degree and a Master's degree, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard, in a relevant subject, is essential. Exceptionally: where applicants have other suitable research or professional experience, they may be admitted without a Master's degree; or where applicants have a lower second-class UK Honours Bachelor's degree (2:2) (or equivalent) they must possess a relevant Master's degree to be admitted. We expect any successful application to include a sufficiently strong and convincing proposal, and those holding a Master's degree are typically well prepared to provide one. Relevant work experience is highly desirable.
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.
The English language level for this programme is: Standard
UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
UCL Energy Institute brings together different perspectives and procedures in energy demand and systems research, transcending boundaries between academic disciplines. As these topics span science, engineering, economics and the social sciences, our methodologies, models and data are explicitly multidisciplinary.
- Energy and the Built Environment
- Energy and Economics
- Energy and Engineering
- Energy and Health
- Energy and Human Dimensions
- Energy and Policy
- Energy and Resources
- Energy and Transport
About this degree
The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) consists of a piece of supervised research, normally undertaken over a period of three years full-time. Assessment is by means of a thesis, which should demonstrate your capacity to pursue original research based upon a good understanding of the research techniques and concepts appropriate to the discipline.
Initially, you will be registered for the MPhil degree. If you wish to proceed to a PhD, you will be required to pass an 'Upgrade' assessment. The purpose of the upgrade is to assess your progress and ability to complete your PhD programme to a good standard and in a reasonable time frame. It is expected that a full-time student will attempt upgrade within 18 months of registration.
Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.
As a research student, your additional costs may include expenses such as books, conference attendance and field research, in the UK or overseas. The Faculty provides financial support to students through the Bartlett Student Conference Fund, Bartlett Doctoral Initiative Fund, Bartlett External Training Fund and Bartlett Extenuating Circumstances Fund. However, please note that these funds are limited and available through competition.
For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.
UCL offers a range of financial awards aimed at assisting both prospective and current students with their studies.
The Energy Resilience in the Built Environment Centre for Doctoral Training offers a number of studentships each year. These are advertised through the UCL Energy Institute website.
Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.
- Deadline: 23 July 2021
- Full fees, plus £17,631 maintenance and £1,200 for research costs/yr (Up to 4 years)
- Based on financial need
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
A PhD indicates a highly qualified researcher, capable of independent analytic thought. It is a highly regarded qualification for those wishing to attain senior management positions in industry, consultancies and public sector organisations, and is essential for those interested in pursuing careers in academia. Our alumni have gone on to careers in academic teaching and research as well as consultancies, industry, government and policy organisations.
The UCL Energy Institute aims to train highly employable graduates who are equipped with the required analytical capability, research knowledge, management skills, and professional values to become leaders and entrepreneurs in their chosen field. Leadership, communication, teamwork, language and business skills are refined in the high-quality multidisciplinary research environment through our taught programmes, workshops, and internal and external seminars.
Supervision and mentorship is available from world-leading researchers with national and international contacts and collaborations across policy, government, industry and academic sectors. These links provide real opportunities to network and collaborate with a variety of external partners. Students have had the opportunity to showcase their research at national and international conferences. They also lead their own networking initiatives such as the UCL Social Sciences Group, which organises seminars and workshops for staff and students. Our students also gain access to networking events, career workshops and seminars held by the UCL Energy Institute and other institutes within the school.
Why study this degree at UCL?
Our degree programme offers students a unique opportunity to work alongside world-leading researchers across disciplinary boundaries, collaborating with colleagues in The Bartlett School of Environment, Energy and Resources and beyond. Our PhD students are core to our activities, and are a key priority in terms of current and future state-of-the-art energy demand and systems research here in the UK and around the world.
Studying with us is about excelling at your own discipline, being exposed to new perspectives and methodologies, and developing communication and networking skills.
Benefit from working with interdisciplinary colleagues to develop your research skills, and open up new career opportunities in the broad field of environment, energy and resources.
In REF 2014 46% of The Bartlett’s research was rated 4* i.e. “world-leading”, with a further 35% recognised as 3* i.e. “internationally excellent”.* The Bartlett submitted the largest quantity of 4* world-leading research outputs (156 items) of any university submitting to the Architecture, Built Environment and Planning sub-panel. On “Research Environment”, which grades the “vitality” and “sustainability” of the research environment, the Bartlett received the highest score for submission to the Architecture, Built Environment and Planning sub-panel.
What our students and staff say
"UCL Energy Institute's focus on multi-disciplinary research into energy systems and energy demands that key elements of understanding respond to the challenges of decarbonisation, energy security and energy affordability. Over the last eight years I have led high-profile research projects, including as principal investigator of the Whole Systems Energy Modelling Consortium (wholeSEM), the UK's groundbreaking initiative to develop, integrate and apply state-of-the-art energy models."
Professor Neil StrachanEnergy Studies Demand MRes, Economics and Policy of Energy and the Environment MSc, Energy MPhil/PhD
UCL Energy Institute
Application and next steps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
This programme requires two references. Further information regarding references can be found in our How to apply section.
- All applicants
- 30 July 2021
Prospective MPhil/PhD applicants are encouraged to send an informal research enquiry before applying. This should be sent directly to the academic you would like to supervise you. Please refer to the staff list on the department website and see UCL’s Institutional Research Information Service (IRIS) for staff profiles. Please attach to your e-mail a referenced research proposal of around 1,000 to 2,000 words and your curriculum vitae (CV).
Further details on how to apply to an MPhil/PhD can be found on the UCL Graduate Admissions website.
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
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