PhD Studentship available with King’s Water member Bruce Malamud

A 3-year fully funded research studentship funded through EDF Energy is currently open for applications. The positions is based at King’s College London at the Department of Geography and will be academically supervised by Prof Bruce D. Malamud (KCL) and industrially co-supervised by Dr. Pietro Bernardara (EDF Energy R&D UK Centre).

Many world regions are at risk from different kinds of natural hazards (e.g., earthquakes, tsunamis, extreme temperatures, floods) occurring spatially and temporally in close proximity. The industrial sector is increasingly interested in a “multi-hazards” with respect to better designing infrastructure, not just the potential impacts of a single hazard, but a combination of multiple hazards, and how industry can incorporate ideas of multi-hazards into their risk assessments and designs. However, multi-hazard research is a relatively young, multi-scale and multi-disciplinary field of study. Researchers working on multi-hazard include statisticians, social scientists or engineers. Current studies on multi-hazards can be conducted at multiple scales ranging from country to region down to site specific (e.g., a single building). The result has been “multi-hazard” research using different methods, approaches and even vocabulary, with no “standard approach”. Here, this PhD aims to address one part of multi-hazard research by creating and using probabilistic models of multi-hazard events.

The PhD proposes to (i) research and synthesize existing literature and (ii) work on a probabilistic model to quantitatively describe multi-hazard events at a medium spatial scale (e.g., 5000–50,000 km²) while taking hazard interactions into account and allowing inference of hazard probability of occurrence at a local (e.g., 1–10 km²) scale. Malamud (KCL) has an existing research portfolio related to multi-hazard research (e.g., see Gill and Malamud, 2014—Rev. Geophys., 2016−ESD) and EDF Energy R&D Centre has been conduction multi-hazard research, including an EU project on the characterisation of natural Hazards (ASAMPSA-E) and in collaboration with other partners (ETI, the Met Office). This doctoral studentship would complement this past and current research.

Applicant Skills and Eligibility
The ideal candidate will (i) have a background in environmental, earth, atmosphere, physical geography or ocean sciences, (ii) have quantitative statistical skills, (iii) have a very good first degree (BA or BSc Honours or overseas equivalent), at first class standard (or upper second class with clear evidence of first class work), and typically also have or be in the process of obtaining at the time of application an appropriate Master’s degree (at distinction or at least high merit level), (iv) be a British or EU national (or otherwise eligible for UK/EU home fees at KCL, see http://www.ukcisa.org.uk/Information–Advice/Fees-and-Money/England-fee-status). Some background in natural hazards would be desirable. Note that the person selected for this position will then need to submit (and be accepted for) a PhD at King’s College London, including if non-English native speaker, evidence of a sufficient level of English to complete a PhD (band B at http://www.kcl.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/apply/entry-requirements/english-language.aspx). For mature and professional applicants some years out from university, those academic credentials may not be as important in evaluating your suitability as the knowledge, skills, and other credentials developed through work or other experience appropriate to your proposed research.

Location of Studentship and Funding
The position is based in London, UK starting from early January 2017 and fully funded by EDF Energy (UK/EU tuition fees plus maintenance allowance).

Contact
For further information on the studentship, please contact Dr. Pietro Bernardara () and/or Professor Bruce D. Malamud ().

How to apply
Students interested in applying for this project should send in (i) a CV (including specific competencies with respect to applicant skills, and two named academic referees), (ii) a covering letter (maximum 2000 words) explaining their interest and suitability in the project. Applications should be sent by e-mail to and by 30 September 2016 and short-listing will take place shortly afterwards.

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