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Environment and Sustainability Research Grants

The Environment and Sustainability Research Grants offer three awards of £15,000 to researchers within 10 years of completing their PhD, for projects that investigate some of the bigger issues of environmental sustainability.

About the Award

Projects must demonstrate the ability to advance geographical knowledge and to have potential impact beyond the academy. Preference is given to projects with a substantial field component, although lab, desk or archive-based projects may also be considered.

The Environment and Sustainability Research Grants have been generously supported by the Deutsche Post-Stiftung and SUN Institute Environment and Sustainability. Applicants may be researches of any nationality but must be affiliated with a UK Higher Education Institution. Individuals or groups may apply.

The Environment and Sustainability Research Grants are not being offered for 2024 and are currently closed for applications. 

Previous recipients


Dr Sophie Blackburn (University of Reading). 'Adaptation social contracts and the politics of climate-driven relocation in Southern Louisiana'

Dr Daniel Magnone (University of Lincoln). 'Sustainable Groundwater Systems: quantifying groundwater volatile organic compounds in response to saline intrusion'



Dr Aleksandra Kosanic (Liverpool John Moores University). 'Availability of nature’s contributions to people for disabled populations in biosphere reserves'

Dr Anna Laing (University of Sussex). 'Towards decolonising climate financing spaces: an exploration and advancement of the Indigenous-led Shandia Vision, Amazon Basin'

Dr Rebecca Windemer and Dr Carla De Laurentis (University of the West of England). 'Is there an afterlife for wind installations in Italy?'



Dr Nicoletta Leonardi (University of Liverpool). 'Building coastal resilience one sediment grain at the time'

Dr Katharine Welsh and Dr Rebecca Collins (University of Chester). 'Gamifying Green: harnessing household habit changes catalysed by COVID-19'



Dr Elia Apostolopoulou (University of Cambridge). 'Oil and gas exploration vs. community energy projects: The right to energy justice in post-crisis Greece'

Read more about Elia's project

Dr Jessie Woodbridge (University of Plymouth). 'Improving socio-ecological resilience to wildfire in the UK via community engagement and integration of deep-time ecological data into landscape management' (subject to final approval)

Dr Laurie Parsons (Royal Holloway University of London). 'Scaling the Placed-Based Geography of Climate Perception and its Impacts on Migration in Cambodia'

Dr Kate Baker and Dr Mark Griffiths (University of Exeter/Newcastle University). 'Towards decolonising geographical field research: an inquiry into local staff-academic relations in Kenyan field stations' 



Dr Agatha Herman and Dr Tom Smith (Cardiff University). 'Pathways to just and sustainable development practices through Tanzanite mining and production'

Dr Thomas Smith (London School of Economics and Political Science). 'How do tropical peatland greenhouse gas emissions respond in the immediate aftermath of a fire?'

Dr Max Martin (University of Sussex). 'Forecasting with fishers: Co-producing weather knowledge for safe and sustainable artisanal fishing in south India'



Dr Kim Ward and Dr Caroline Clason (University of Plymouth). 'Release of legacy fallout radionuclides from retreating glaciers: Coproducing ‘risk maps’ with the Sami to inform adaptations to an emerging threat in Arctic Sweden' (subject to final approval)

Dr Regina Hansda (Newcastle University). 'Indigenous food festivals in India: Resisting, claiming and (re)making an alternative history of food sovereignty?'

Dr Gemma Sou (University of Manchester). 'Disaster recovery policy processes in postcolonial contexts: Life-work histories in the Caribbean' 



Dr Jessica Hope (University of Cambridge). 'Re-conceptualising sustainable development for the contemporary era: NGOs, social movements and resource extraction in Bolivia'

Dr Giuseppe Feola (University of Reading). 'Governing sustainable agri-food systems: Critical geographies of peri-urban agriculture and food sovereignty in Sogamoso, Colombia'

Dr Sarah Percival (University of Portsmouth). 'UK urban flood risk communication'

Dr Heather Price (University of Stirling). 'Investigating the temporal dynamics of drinking water quality in Malawi informal settlements'



Dr Jean-Christophe Comte (Aberdeen University). 'East African groundwater resources under climatic and human pressure'

Dr Franklin Ginn (University of Bristol). 'The socio-ecological politics of private green space in Islamabad, Pakistan'

Dr Tom Sizmur (University of Reading). 'The impact of past, present and proposed development on the pollution of soft-sediment intertidal ecosystems on the north coast of British Columbia'

Dr Gareth Clay (University of Manchester). 'Restoring the Function and Resilience of Ecosystems on St Helena'



Dr Joanne Jordan (University of Manchester). 'Urban Climate Resilience: How does Land Tenure affect Adaptation to Climate Change in Dhaka?'

Dr Eszter Kovacs (University of Cambridge). 'Survival Strategies of Farmers in the Absence of Greening Subsidies in Hungary'

Dr Phil Renforth (University of Cardiff). 'Papakolea Beach, Hawaii: a natural analogue of a global carbon sequestration technology'

Dr Ivan Scales (University of Cambridge). 'The socio-ecological dynamics of land use and landscape change in the mangrove forests of western Madagascar'