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Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland


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Sustainable transition to nature-based solutions for coastal defence – University of Essex

Project area title: Sustainable transition to nature-based solutions for coastal defence

Course: Applicants wanting to undertake this research project should apply for a PhD in Biological Sciences

Funding: The University of Essex is offering six PhD research scholarships for students to participate in one of our Sustainable Transitions DTP projects.

This is an opportunity to conduct fully funded interdisciplinary research under the Sustainable Transitions Leverhulme Doctoral Training Programme at the University of Essex.

Coastal communities must rapidly adapt to the effects of sea-level rise. Nature-based solutions can assist with achieving a sustainable transition of coastal defence.

Essex estuaries have a cultural heritage tied to oysters dating back to Roman times, but native oyster beds are now one of the most threatened marine habitats in Europe and have been controversially substituted by the introduced Pacific oyster in the 1960s. This project explores the potential of oyster reefs within Essex estuaries to function as a natural breakwater, dissipating wave energy, slowing coastal erosion, and reducing storm damage. Oyster reefs benefit the natural environment and economy by enhancing water quality through filtration and providing habitats to support commercially important fisheries.

Supervisory Team : 

Dr Michael Steinke
Primary Discipline Supervisor

Life Sciences
Dr Katy Wheeler
Secondary Discipline Supervisor

Dr Maged Ali
Tertiary Discipline

Person specification
This opportunity would suit someone with a curious mind that enjoys interdisciplinary work. A degree in environmental/marine science would be advantageous but candidates with a social-science degree and environment-facing experiences or skills will be considered.

Research proposal
The project area is broadly defined, leaving scope for the applicant to develop their own specific research proposal as part of the application. The successful candidate will further develop their proposal in close consultation with the supervisory team.


More information & Apply here

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