This opportunity is now closed.

Funded PhD Opportunity

Coastal Governance on the Island of Ireland: challenges and opportunities in a new era

Subject: Architecture, Built Environment and Planning


Summary

The coast of the island of Ireland is highly productive and diverse, and supports a range of socio-economic needs and desires including tourism, recreation, fisheries, industry and power generation. Yet, the coast is also a vulnerable resource and is increasingly exposed to changing environmental parameters (e.g. increased storm intensity and erosion); social change (e.g. transient populations and an ageing demographic); and economic instability (e.g. seasonal employment and reliance on tourism/fishing). Implementing effective responses to the various demands and stressors necessitates a systemic appreciation that respects natural and anthropogenic interactions across multi-scalar processes and contexts.

The emergence of marine governance structures and regimes present a certain opportunity to enhance the resilience of coastal communities. The Marine Policy Statement (HM Government 2010), for example, requires marine planners in the UK to plan in such a way that ‘benefits society as a whole’. Marine Spatial Planning thus is required to have positive terrestrial, as well as marine, impacts. This is challenging in practice as the coastal-marine divide constitutes a complex governance arena where a range of rights, responsibilities and values can coalesce or compete: creating spaces of innovation but also for conflict.

At the local level, there is a growing awareness of the need to embed mitigation and adaptation strategies into local spatial planning tools and processes. Localised responses, however, are shaped by the hierarchal (national – supranational) governance architecture within which local government operates; which may serve to promote or limit the development of a more strategic approach to responding to, and managing, coastal change. It is critical, therefore, to understand the supporting legal rules and institutions which serve to define what is permitted, who has the power to do what and the consequences of different acts, omissions and situations.

The UK’s impeding exit from the EU poses further uncertainty in terms of potential legislative changes and gaps, and the future of cross-border planning. This doctoral research critically explores the capacity (and willingness) of existing institutional arrangements to facilitate the development of a more strategic approach to managing coastal change on the island of Ireland. Particular attention is placed on the weight given to issues of community resilience and well-being and how these are, or are not, taken into consideration in decision making processes. In doing so, it provides practical policy recommendations for maximising the socio-economic benefits of marine planning and securing more resilient outcomes for coastal communities.


Essential criteria

  • To hold, or expect to achieve by 15 August, an Upper Second Class Honours (2:1) Degree or equivalent from a UK institution (or overseas award deemed to be equivalent via UK NARIC) in a related or cognate field.
  • Experience using research methods or other approaches relevant to the subject domain
  • Sound understanding of subject area as evidenced by a comprehensive research proposal

Desirable Criteria

If the University receives a large number of applicants for the project, the following desirable criteria may be applied to shortlist applicants for interview.

  • A comprehensive and articulate personal statement

Funding

    The University offers the following awards to support PhD study and applications are invited from UK, EU and overseas for the following levels of support:

    Vice Chancellors Research Studentship (VCRS)

    Full award (full-time PhD fees + DfE level of maintenance grant + RTSG for 3 years).

    This scholarship will cover full-time PhD tuition fees and provide the recipient with £15,000 maintenance grant per annum for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.

    Vice-Chancellor’s Research Bursary (VCRB)

    Part award (full-time PhD fees + 50% DfE level of maintenance grant + RTSG for 3 years).

    This scholarship will cover full-time PhD tuition fees and provide the recipient with £7,500 maintenance grant per annum for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.

    Vice-Chancellor’s Research Fees Bursary (VCRFB)

    Fees only award (PhD fees + RTSG for 3 years).

    This scholarship will cover full-time PhD tuition fees for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.

    Department for the Economy (DFE)

    The scholarship will cover tuition fees at the Home rate and a maintenance allowance of £ 15,009 per annum for three years. EU applicants will only be eligible for the fee’s component of the studentship (no maintenance award is provided). For Non-EU nationals the candidate must be "settled" in the UK. This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.

    Due consideration should be given to financing your studies; for further information on cost of living etc. please refer to: www.ulster.ac.uk/doctoralcollege/postgraduate-research/fees-and-funding/financing-your-studies


Other information


The Doctoral College at Ulster University

Key dates

Submission deadline
Monday 19 February 2018

Interview Date
12 March 2018


Applying

Apply Online  


Contact supervisor

Dr Linda McElduff


Other supervisors

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