Studentship W5P5 – Translating lessons learnt from Crossrail and other international projects into improved sustainable and resilient future underground infrastructure

Funding – The studentship covers UCL tuition fees and provides a stipend of £15,726 pa (tax-free) plus a top-up amount of £2,500 pa subject to the signing of a contract with the industrial partner.

Funding Body: EPSRC

Project Partner: Arup

Academic Supervisor: Dr Raul Fuentes

In partnership with ARUP and the UCL Department of Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering, the UCL Centre for Urban Sustainability and Resilience invites applications for a four year (one year MRes and three year EngD) studentship to work on an Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), UK funded project.

Studentship Description:

Underground infrastructure demand is growing worldwide as a response to the growth of urban settlements and climate change. As demand increases, so does the complexity of these projects due to increasingly crowded underground spaces and the multiple challenges this poses. Major infrastructure projects present a unique opportunity to ‘learn’ in-situ about these challenges. The evidence is that they have traditionally shaped the way the industry evolves; examples are the Jubilee Line Extension (JLE) and Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL) in the UK, and others internationally such as the Northern Airport Link in Brisbane, Australia, the MRT Hong Kong extension, Transbay Transit Centre, San Francisco, etc.

Crossrail is another example of such a project. With a budget in excess of £16bn, it is the biggest current infrastructure project in Europe. It involves the construction of 8 new underground stations plus more than 21km of tunnels. The EngD will focus on providing the necessary evidence to support future underground infrastructure that is more resilient and sustainable world-wide through back-analysis for projects such as High Speed 2 and Crossrail 2 in the UK and the California High Speed Link beyond.

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Person Specification:

Applicants should ideally have a 1st or 2.1 (honours) at undergraduate level and a master’s degree. Candidates should have a good knowledge of geotechnics and soil mechanics and possess good communication and presentation skills.

Training can be provided to those wanting to progress towards Chartership status whilst conducting the research.

Eligibility Applicants must meet the EPSRC eligibility criteria

Start Date: 23rd September 2013 for 4-years full time (no part time option available)

Application Procedure:

For more information about the project vacancy and how to apply, please visit and upload a covering letter and CV indicating how you meet the criteria and demonstrating your passion for the research area. 

For informal discussion about the post please email Dr Fuentes (r.fuentes( or Dr Yeow (

Closing Date:

The closing date for applications is 5pm on Friday 31st May 2013. Interviews will be held in June 2013.  

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