The NIHR School for Public Health Research is funding up to 25 PhD Studentships as part of an initiative to build capacity in public health research. The studentships will begin in October 2018 and will be distributed across the School’s eight academic Centres.
Studentships will be aligned to the School’s research programmes and themes:
- Public mental health
- Places and communities
- Children, young people and families
- Health inequalities
- Efficient and equitable public health systems
- Changing behaviour at a population level
Two of the PhD studentships will be based in the Unit and Centre for Diet and Activity Research in Cambridge (CEDAR):
Bringing together transport and health impact modelling approaches to answer questions on the impacts of new cycling infrastructure
Supervised by Dr James Woodcock, along with colleagues Dr Audrey de Nazelle & Dr Aruna Sivakumar at Imperial college London, and Dr Anna Goodman at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
This project will involve applying and modifying models used by transport researchers and practitioners to answer the questions policy makers and the public are asking about how new cycling infrastructure impacts population health. Although existing modelling studies have estimated substantial health gains from increasing population cycling, the aggregate and aspatial nature of these models means they cannot answer emerging questions of public concern. Transport models have the potential to contribute but do not currently estimate health impacts. This study will involve developing new methods and integrating existing ones to bring these approaches together. This will enable investigation of potential impacts through e.g. redirected motor traffic, increased distance between pedestrians and motor traffic, and longer term impacts through household relocation.
Exploring new ways of purchasing food
Diet and obesity is influenced by local food retail environments. Local and national governments are increasingly attempting to manipulate these environments. Alongside, new ways of purchasing food are emerging such as internet grocery retailing; online takeaway and restaurant platforms; and menu box deliveries. These may change how consumers interact with local food environments, undermining public health attempts to manage environments. Almost nothing is known about the public health implications of these new ways of purchasing food. This studentship offers the potential for a series of exploratory studies. The results will help public health policymakers be alert to future trends and the challenges and opportunities these offer to maximise population health.
Studentship information and how to apply
Students will be registered with the University of Cambridge and belong to one of its Colleges. The MRC Epidemiology Unit is a University research department investigating the causes and prevention of diabetes and obesity. It hosts CEDAR, a UKCRC Centre of Excellence in Public Health Research, which studies the factors that influence diet and physical activity behaviour.
Studentships will normally commence in October 2018. These are 3-year positions for those with a Masters degree, or equivalent experience, in an appropriate subject. CEDAR and SPHR will provide diverse training. The academic requirement for entry is a 2i undergraduate degree, or equivalent, in a relevant subject.
Studentships will fund a contribution towards research and training costs, and tuition up to the value of Home/EU fees. Students with overseas status may apply but will need to fund the remaining fees from alternative sources. Non-UK/EU students should check the University requirements before applying (https://www.internationalstudents.cam.ac.uk/). An annual tax-free stipend of £18,000 will be provided for 3 years to eligible students (http://www.mrc-epid.cam.ac.uk/work-and-study/studentships/student-finance/).
Applications are welcome from individuals with a strong academic record who wish to wish to develop a career in public health research.
Successful applicants will be expected to complete a PhD during the award period.
For more information and to view the full list of projects and host institutions please view the PhD Studentships application information pack.
To apply please complete the PhD Studentships application form by 12 noon on Wednesday 9 May 2018.