ESRC PhD Research Studentships in the Social and Policy Studies of Energy and the Environment
ESRC PhD Research Studentships in the Social and Policy Studies of Energy and the Environment is a study pathway on the UCL, Bloomsbury and East London Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) in the Grouping “Cities, Environment and Development”.
Offered jointly by:
- UCL Energy Institute
- UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources
- UCL Science Technology and Public Policy
The aim of this PhD Research Studentship pathway is to contribute to building a better social science informed evidence base for energy and environment policies, through training applied social scientists in the field. The focus is the critical social scientific analysis of natural scientific, engineering and social scientific (including economic) evidence production and use, for instance evidence derived from various modelling approaches. Projects exploring critical perspectives on the development and use of models in policy advice are particularly welcome.
The Pathway offers one route, in either a +4 or +3 structure:
+4 structure: We anticipate most students will take the +4 structure. Typically these students will already have a Masters degree, but will not have qualifications that demonstrate the skills covered in the six core modules of the Pathway. Students take six core modules (90 credits), two elective modules (30 credits), and a dissertation research project and thesis proposal (120 credits). Performance on these modules will inform whether or not a student successfully upgrades from MPhil to PhD.
+3 structure: This is offered on a case-by-case basis where applicants are able to provide evidence of previous qualifications demonstrating the skills covered in the six core modules outlined below, as well as research training meeting ESRC requirements.
SIX CORE MODULES (15 credits each)
Research Concepts (a core module on the Energy Institute MRes in Energy Demand Studies). The module covers ontology/ epistemology and the scientific method, reviewing the literature, research design/strategy, quantitative and qualitative methods and analysis, research ethics and dissemination of research findings.
Communication Skills (a core module on the Energy Institute MRes in Energy Demand Studies). The module covers the principles of effective writing and presentations for both academic and non-academic audiences, as well as professional communication skills such as writing effective emails, developing a professional presence and networking.
Books Seminar A (a core module on the Science, Technology Engineering and Public Policy Doctoral Training Programme). Students read and critique 10 core books in the social theory of science and technology in practice and apply the concepts from a selection of these books to their own research projects.
Books Seminar B (a core module on the Science, Technology Engineering and Public Policy Doctoral Training Programme). The module content is as per Books Seminar A, but with different books.
Energy, People & Behaviour (an elective module on the Energy Institute / Institute for Sustainable Resources MSc in Economics and Policy of Energy and the Environment). Introduces students to some of the main social science theories used to understand energy related behaviours and lifestyles and how they could be changed and how to apply those theories to real world energy and environmental problems.
Energy, Technology and Innovation (an elective module on the Energy Institute / Institute for Sustainable Resources MSc in Economics and Policy of Energy and the Environment). Introduces students to innovation studies, using insights from evolutionary and Schumpeterian economics, sociology and politics to understand socio-technical change in the context of energy and environment.
TWO ELECTIVE MODULES (15 credits each)
Students may select elective modules (each worth 15 credits) from the MSc EPEE, MRes EDS and STEaPP’s Masters in Public Administration (MPA), or from modules offered in linked pathways (for example, the Environment, Politics and Society module in the Human Geography pathway).
DISSERTATION RESEARCH PROJECT AND THESIS PROPOSAL (120 credits in total)
Applications to the Pathway are due on 10 January 2022. Please check the UBEL DTP website for full details of the application process, including deadlines.
Before finalizing your application to this Pathway:
1. Ensure that you meet ESRC Residency Requirements.
2. Ensure that your proposed research fits both the aim and the focus of the Pathway.
3. Ensure that the modules on the Pathway are suitable for you and your research.
4. Discuss your proposed research with one of the Pathway Team Members:
- Michelle Shipworth - firstname.lastname@example.org - in the UCL Energy Institute
- Adam Cooper - email@example.com- in Science Technology and Public Policy
- Will McDowall - firstname.lastname@example.org - in the UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources
- Arthur Petersen - email@example.com - in Science Technology and Public Policy
5. Discuss your proposed research with a potential supervisor in one of the above departments.
Supervisors of those pathway applicants invited by the pathway panel to submit a Full Application to the UBEL DTP need to complete Section Three (Training environment) of the Application Form.
This forms an important part of the assessment of applications. It includes identification of a co-supervisor (cross-pathway supervision is encouraged), the outline of the training plan for the applicant and proposed external collaborations (which are expected to form part of every studentship).
- Once offered an UBEL DTP scholarship, applicants should immediately apply for acceptance onto the UCL doctoral program.
- On this Pathway, there is no need to apply to the doctoral program before being offered an UBEL DTP scholarship.