UCL Institute for Risk and Disaster Reduction


Why choose us

With global hazards and risks presenting increasingly complex challenges to people around the world, the IRDR offers the opportunity to help us understand and respond to these challenges.

Our ethos

  • Intellectual diversity, across disciplines, methods, expertise and background. 
  • IRDR has a strong sense of public mission embedded in what we do. Our research is intended to help us better understand and reduce risks and disasters.
  • A strongly international faculty and student body.
  • IRDR has a diverse, integrated and welcoming scholarly community.

Our expertise 

  • IRDR is one of the handful of academic departments in the world that combines both natural and social scientists in pursuing risk and disaster research. Our combined expertise includes but is not restricted to hydrology, international law, geophysical hazards, vulcanology, gender-related risk, conflict, history, conflict – and more besides.
  • Excellent supervision by world-leading researchers across a range of specialist fields with cumulative decades of experience of supervising doctoral students to completion.

Our support for doctoral students

  • Annual departmental events that are dedicated to our research students.
  • Up to £3,000 total per student for research expenses including conferences (if not already provided by external sponsors) via application to the IRDR office.
  • An extensive support network incorporating peers, professional services staff and academic faculty in the department and the wider UCL community.
  • Strong formal and informal networks within the department, UCL and across other institutions around the world to help support your research, fieldwork and career after completion of your doctoral study.
  • Opportunity to apply for additional funding for fieldwork, conferences, lab consumables, etc., from the IRDR and UCL.
  • Option to request financial and administrative support for student-led activities promoting IRDR, such as external partnerships, workshops, social activities, or other creative proposals.
  • Support for disabilities and student wellbeing.
  • IRDR and UCL offers a range of generous scholarships and financial support for research students.

Find out what our current PhD students are studying