School Funded PhD Research Studentship Developing Novel Proxy Methods for Climate Reconstruction in the Arctic and Antarctic

Faculty of Science and Technology

Professor Simon Belt
Dr Tom Brown

Project Description

Over the last 30 years or so, the polar regions on Earth have been experiencing dramatic changes in climate, including a 30% decrease in annual sea ice cover. In order to best understand these changes, it is necessary to obtain a more detailed understanding of climate has behaved in the past. Beyond the observational record, past climate conditions is often achieved through so-called proxy methods. In the current project, we will build on a recently established proxy method for reconstructing Arctic and Antarctic sea ice through the analysis of unusual lipid chemicals or biomarkers that are produced by sea ice diatoms and are preserved in underlying sediments. The main aim will be to improve our understanding of how this particular proxy method works and apply it to gain further insights into past climate (sea ice) conditions for both the Arctic and the Antarctic. The successful candidate will be expected to carry out (or learn) detailed analytical laboratory methods and interpret data in an applied oceanographic context. Some international collaboration will also be involved.


Applicants should have a minimum of a first class or upper second class bachelor degree in chemistry, environmental science, marine science or a related subject. Applications from candidates with a relevant Masters qualification will be welcomed, especially those that have a focus on interpreting laboratory-based measurements within a broader environmental context.

Also Read  PhD Studentship: Healthcare systems engineering and systems modelling


The studentship is supported for 3 years and includes full Home/EU tuition fees plus a stipend of £13,726 per annum.  The studentship will only fully fund those applicants who are eligible for Home/EU fees with relevant qualifications.  Applicants normally required to cover overseas fees will have to cover the difference between the Home/EU and the overseas tuition fee rates (approximately £9,790 per annum).

For further information on the project or for an informal discussion, please contact Professor Simon Belt at

A list of relevant publications can be found at:

For an application form and full details on how to apply, please click the Apply button below. Applicants should send a completed application form, CV and a covering letter detailing their suitability to Mrs Sharon Healy, Room A425 Portland Square, University of Plymouth, Drake Circus, Plymouth, PL4 8AA or via email to

Closing date for applications: 12 noon, 23 August 2013.

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview in September or October. We regret that we may not be able to respond to all applications. Applicants who have not received an offer of a place approximately 6 weeks after the deadline should consider their application has been unsuccessful on this occasion. 

Scholarships expiring soon Forums School Funded PhD Research Studentship Developing Novel Proxy Methods for Climate Reconstruction in the Arctic and Antarctic

Viewing 0 reply threads
Viewing 0 reply threads
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.