Net zero carbon energy systems

Net zero carbon energy systems – tools and SDG alignments. Two PhD studentships.

Start date

1 October 2022


3 years

Application deadline

Funding source

University of Surrey

Funding information

  • Full tuition fee waiver p.a. (UK and international students)
  • Stipend at UKRI rates p.a. (currently at £15,609)
  • £1,000 p.a. training and travel costs.



Reaching the target of net zero emissions locally, nationally and globally has assumed importance as the international community tries to negotiate the developmental challenges while remaining within the planetary boundaries. The race to develop sustainable solutions for the global transformation within a limited time horizon is a major challenge. This is even more challenging when society faces many other struggles, including those related to their basic needs on a day-to-day basis. But climate actions could be designed to generate wider socio-economic benefits that could support sustainable development objectives at different levels. Yet, such integration of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) into climate actions is rare and the challenges arise due to a lack of appropriate tools and appropriate governance arrangements that can support the decision-making process at the local level.

Two projects proposed here would thus focus on addressing the above challenges.

  1. Open-access net-zero energy decision support systems at the local level. The aim of the work is to develop an open-access user-friendly decision support system that can be used by local decision-makers for supporting the roll-out of net zero energy programmes and plans at the local level. Identification of needs, model development and validation of the model through local application will form the main activities of the project.
  2. Integrating Climate Actions with the Sustainable Development Goals at the local level: The work aims to develop alternative governance arrangements that would facilitate integration of local climate actions with the SDGs through co-benefits, efficiency gains and effective governance. Through a participatory approach, the project will interact with stakeholders and investigate ways of delivering SDG-integrated climate actions at the local level.

Related links

Centre for Environment and Sustainability

Eligibility criteria

Applicants are expected to hold a first or upper second class first degree in a relevant discipline plus a good Masters degree, preferably with distinction.

This studentship is for UK and international students.

IELTS requirements: If English is not your first language, you will be required to have an IELTS Academic of 6.5 or above (or equivalent), with no sub-test score below 6.  

How to apply

Applications should be submitted via the Environment and Sustainability PhD programme page on the "Apply" tab. Please clearly state the studentship title and supervisor on your application.

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Application deadline

Contact details

Subhes Bhattacharyya

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