Why this project is important: Solar parks are growing exponentially across the world and this growth is expected to continue. At the same time there is growing global concern that reduced pollinator populations are limiting the production of critical things, including food, on which society relies. The land solar parks occupy could be used to boost pollinator populations and pollination services to surrounding agricultural land, as well as low carbon electricity. Consequently, this project will examine the potential for solar parks to mitigate pollinator declines and boost pollination services through provision of microclimatic niches, that mitigate climate change, and increased floral resources, landscape heterogeneity and connectivity. The findings from the project will be inputted to both pollination and solar park strategies and policies, delivering a real-world benefit. The focus: This PhD will further fundamental understanding of regulators of pollinator decline and implications for pollination services using solar parks as a test-bed, ultimately delivering relevant evidence to inform policy and practice. What's in it for the candidate: The successful candidate will become an expert in pollinators, pollination services, and energy-environment interactions. They will develop a broad suite of relevant skills including experimental design, field skills (climate, vegetation and pollinator), statistics, GIS, and communication for different audiences, ensuring they are highly employable in a range of sectors. The project is in collaboration with Low Carbon, with whom they will undertake an internship to gain experience of the industry. Given the relevance of the topic they will also be involved in producing industry and policy orientated-outputs, providing additional experience. The student will be fully integrated in research teams within Lancaster and Reading (where they will spend one month per year), accessing training, facilities and networks in both institutions, including overseas collaborators.
PhD funded through Heilbronn Institute for Mathematical Research, University of Bristol. * It is not possible for HIMR students to be registered via the Je-S portal. The students will therefore be manually registered by EPSRC on their internal system to ensure they are captured alongside EPSRC's other studentships.
By drawing on experiences from the traditions and cultural heritage of China and the UK, and through knowledge exchange, this project examines the challenges and opportunities for sustaining designs and products of ethno-cultural significance through the creation of urban ecologies of creative practice in major Chinese cities. It will result in a joint authored report that includes: Urban Ecologies of Creative Practice: A framework for understanding the current condition and future potential, socially and economically, of culturally significant designs, products and practices in Chinese cities. This will be of interest to those in government and business sectors related primarily to The Creative Industries, with strong associated links to the themes of Humanities Contributing to Development and Urban Transformations. The project will develop a common understanding that recognises: a. different qualities and stages of sustainment of culturally significant designs, products and practices in China and the UK; b. related rural-urban contexts, between the two countries and c. from the above, investigate commonalities, differences and opportunities for mutual learning and research development in relation to culturally significant designs, products and practices - leading to a framework defining key characteristics, strengths, weaknesses, benefits and obstacles, and future potential and opportunities for culturally significant designs and products within Urban Ecologies of Creative Practice in Chinese cities. While there are more and more re-examinations of the quality of Chinese cities after their rapid expansions in recent years, this urban development can lead to a transition from hard power (politics, law) to soft power (culture, economy). The rich ethnic cultures in China, especially those migrating from rural areas into cities, are set to reshape the soft power, which has the potential to promote the sustainable development of cities and ethnic cultures. This research aims at how to understand and carry forward ethnic cultures in the transformation of Chinese cities through studying creative designs, products and services. This research will be conducted in China and the UK. The project includes 6 visits - 3 by China researchers to the UK in Autumn 2016, 2017, 2018 and 3 by UK researchers to China in Spring 2016, 2017 and 2018. Each will include site visits and workshops. The latter two (one in UK, one in China) include extended workshops to develop the framework and the final workshop includes Creative Industries representatives from the private sector and government. These visits will each result in a Summary Report and contribution to a joint website Gallery and Blog Series. In addition, joint summary reports will be produced documenting the emergent understandings of the relevance and role of the internet and digital space in the future directions of culturally significant designs, products and practices. Emerging understandings, insights and conclusions will inform the creation and successive refinements of the Framework. A summary report and Gallery contributions will document the outcomes and insights drawn from the International Studios with students. The final project report will provide an overview of the project, the finalised framework, as well as project outcomes, conclusions, and identification for future joint research themes and opportunities. ODA Compliance: Ethno-Cultural products and practices have a strong relationship to the notions of 'good work' and employment thus to economic development and growth. This research will contribute to education and knowledge development, among researchers, the students, and private sector and government participants. Wider dissemination of findings through various publications will inform future research directions related to the creative industries, humanities contributing to development and urban transformations.
It has long been recognized that the demographics of developed societies such as Britain are undergoing a fundamental change, with people living longer lives, and as a consequence experiencing a longer period of frailty in old age. This has immediate implications for economy and labour force dynamics, as well as the social welfare system (Tinker, 2002). Increasing efforts are being made to improve our understanding of this new phenomenon. As the population, by definition, is a mixture of very heterogeneous entities, it is vital to characterise the varying experiences of ageing in order to understand the needs of individuals and to quantify the impacts of any future policy changes. In parallel, due to advancement in technology, there has been an explosive growth in data collection, which could be utilised to improve our understanding of the ageing process on a finer scale and to aid both individual and policy-level decision making. However, these technological advancements also bring new challenges to analyse such rich information, due to the problem known as the "curse of dimensionality". This states that any standard analysis becomes a non-trivial task in a high dimensional context (many observed variables). Additionally, even in the era of big data, it is impossible to collect all the relevant information that characterises individual variability, and variability and noise levels may even increase with increasing number of measurements.
Inequality is measured at the household level and public policy is based on these measures. If households pool their resources entirely then this measure will accurately identify disparities between groups in society. If not, current measures of inequality could understate the problem by ignoring disparities within households. Participation in UK university education has increased substantially from 30% in the early 1990s to 48% in 2014/15, the largest increases being among women (House of Commons Library 2016). It is possible that more people are finding partners with similar levels of education to themselves. This could have caused inequality within households to decrease as earning potential of both partners is similar, which though reducing the disparity between measures is still worth investigating.