About the Project
UCL’s Energy Institute and Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering in partnership with Buro Happold are seeking applications for a fully funded Studentship on topic in “Dynamic Holistic Life Cycle Assessment: Integrating Embodied and Operational Carbon, Energy, Water and wider ecosystem impacts”
How could life cycle assessment reduce energy use and carbon emissions as well as facilitate a circular economy and regenerative design? What would look like if we also explored other indicators of ecosystem health in the context of life cycle assessment methodologies?
Dates: 4 years from September 2022
Context and Project description:
Sustainability in the built environment has typically been framed in relation to the impacts of new buildings on their immediate surroundings without adequately considering the impacts remote from the project site but caused by the project.
The industry is starting to look more holistically at the whole life carbon impacts of new construction projects and retrofits, but what would that look like if we explored other indicators of ecosystem health in the context of life cycle assessment methodologies? How could holistic life cycle assessment reduce energy use and carbon emissions as well as facilitate a circular economy and regenerative design?
The focus of this research would be on the interplay between whole life carbon (integrating embodied and operational demand and supply impacts) and whole life energy, water, and other whole life ecosystem impacts of buildings and their associated infrastructure.
This project aims to develop a new framework for life cycle assessment for new-build and retrofit building development projects in order to increase the applicability of life cycle assessment in driving action against climate change and ecosystem breakdown.
Aspects to research and include:
– Dynamic: temporal considerations such as grid decarbonisation and the time it takes for natural systems to regenerate
– Holistic: expanding the range of indicators of ecosystem health such as water
– Other inherent restrictions of existing Life Cycle Assessment methods, building on previous PhD students’ findings
Pilot testing of the framework will include consultation with industry and be supported by an impact assessment of real-world project(s) to stress test the framework learning, recommendations and next steps.
The applicant should have an interest in technical aspects of building and/or environmental engineering, and life cycle assessment with strong quantitative skills but an openness to drawing on qualitative data and approaches.
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.
Applicants must also meet the minimum language requirements of UCL
Applicants should be familiar with the changes to EU and International Eligibility for UKRI funded studentships.
How to apply
Please submit a pre-application by email to the UCL ERBE Centre Manager ([email protected]) with Subject Reference: 4-year PhD studentship in Dynamic Holistic Life Cycle Assessment: Integrating Embodied and Operational Carbon, Energy, Water and wider ecosystem impacts
The application should include all of the following:
1) A covering letter clearly stating why you are applying and how your interests and experience relate to this project, and your understanding of eligibility according to these guidelines: EU and International Eligibility for EPSRC/UKRI funded studentships
Only shortlisted applicants will be invited for an interview.
– For the interview shortlisted candidates will be asked to show proof of their degree certificate(s) and transcript(s) of degree(s), and proof of their fees eligibility.
– The interview panel will consist of consist of the project’s academic supervisors at UCL, and a representative of the ERBE CDT Academic management
– The interview will include a short presentation from the candidate on their ideas of how to approach this PhD project.
– Following the interview, the successful candidate will be invited to make a formal application to the UCL Research Degree programme for ERBE CDT.
Deadline for applications: Sunday, 8th May 2022 @ 23:59 (UK time)
Interviews week commencing: TBC
For further details about the admission process, please contact: [email protected]
For any further details regarding the project, contact Professor Dejan Mumovic, [email protected]
You will be undertaking this project:
- In UCL at the main (Bloomsbury) campus as part of the new EPSRC-SFI Centre for Doctoral Training in Energy Resilience and the Built Environment (ERBE CDT). This is a collaboration between UCL, Loughborough University and Marine and Renewable Energy Ireland (MaREI). For more information please see https://erbecdt.ac.uk
- Buro Happold’s London office is walking distance from UCL’s Bloomsbury Campus
Funding: The studentship will cover UK course fees and an enhanced tax-free stipend of approx. £19,000 per year for 4 years along with a substantial budget for research, travel, and centre activities.
Fees: ERBE CDT has very limited funding for applicants requiring coverage of overseas fees. We advise all interested applicants to be familiar with the changes to EU and International Eligibility for EPSRC/UKRI funded studentships