PhD Studentship in Environmental Engineering – Climate Emergency and Healthcare in the NHS

Award Summary

100% fees covered, and a minimum tax-free annual living allowance of £17,668 (2022-23 UKRI rate). Plus, substantial additional research costs (for travel, consumables, and additional living funds).


The NHS accounts for >6% of England’s greenhouse gas emissions. Climate change also poses significant risks to health and healthcare delivery. There is therefore a need for rapid progress towards Net Zero healthcare systems that are also adapted to future climates.

In this PhD you will have the opportunity to work with a committed team at the Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (NHFT) to address some of these critical sectoral challenges which could include:

  • describing primary-secondary care interfaces and developing an inventory of services. Targeting services of high volume and undertaking whole-care pathway analysis could identify high emission hotspots to target emissions reductions.
  • reviewing existing policies to identify those that impede progression towards Net Zero targets.
  • identifying appropriate standard metrics to assess mitigation action in a healthcare setting as part of a Net Zero framework.
  • develop a framework for assessing the risk associated with climate hazards in healthcare settings and identify adaptation actions consistent with Net Zero, identifying possible trade-offs between climate action and health.

This PhD project provides the opportunity to develop skills in a range of areas including network mapping, data analysis, coding, analysis of climate/environment data, climate science, and impact and risk assessment.

Number Of Awards


Start Date

18th September 2023

Award Duration

4 Years

Application Closing Date

13th March 2023


Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) & Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (NHFT)


Dr Stephen Blenkinsop and Dr Oliver Heidrich

Eligibility Criteria

You must have, or expect to gain, a minimum 2:1 Honours degree or international equivalent in a subject relevant to the proposed PhD project (inc. engineering, Natural and environmental Science, Healthcare etc.). Enthusiasm for research, the ability to think and work independently, excellent analytical skills and strong verbal and written communication skills are also essential requirements.

Home and international applicants (inc. EU) are welcome to apply and if successful will receive a full studentship. Applicants whose first language is not English require an IELTS score of 6.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in all sub-skills.

International applicants may require an ATAS (Academic Technology Approval Scheme) clearance certificate prior to obtaining their visa and to study on this programme.

How To Apply

You must apply through the University’s Apply to Newcastle Portal

Once registered select ‘Create a Postgraduate Application’.

Use ‘Course Search’ to identify your programme of study:

  • search for the ‘Course Title’ using the programme code: 8040F
  • Research Area: Civil Engineering (Environmental)
  • select PhD Civil Engineering (full time)’ as the programme of study

You will then need to provide the following information in the ‘Further Questions’ section:

  • a ‘Personal Statement’ (this is a mandatory field) – upload a document or write a statement directly in to the application form
  • the studentship code ENG111 in the ‘Studentship/Partnership Reference’ field
  • when prompted for how you are providing your research proposal – select ‘Write Proposal’. You should then type in the title of the research project from this advert. You do not need to upload a research proposal.

Contact Details

Dr Stephen Blenkinsop

University of Egypt Senior Research Associate.

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