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ONE Planet Doctoral Training Partnership


ONE Planet offers a cohort-based doctoral training partnership at Northumbria and Newcastle Universities. The Natural and Environmental Research Council (NERC) funds the partnership.

Ensuring that students are trained in key skills and the requisite knowledge base means that ONE Planet partners span industry, regulatory authorities to government with dedicated placements aligned with the Government's Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund - aiming to bring together the UK's world-leading research with business - clean growth and the knowledge economy. Find out more about our partners.


We have a minimum of 12 (3.5 year) PhD fully funded studentship awards available for October 2021 entry. Each award includes fees (Home / EU), an annual living allowance (£15,009) and a Research Training Support Grant (for travel, consumables, as required).

Please note, the closing date for applications is 18th January 2021.

Click here to find out more about our ONE Planet Doctoral Training Partnership.


We invite applications for the listed PhD projects provided under each of the research areas. We also welcome new project proposals by applicants, based on the ONE Planet themes:

All PhD projects will be further defined and expanded by the students over the initial 6-month training period, which includes:

  • training in core modules
  • ongoing group mini-projects
  • co-development with partners / supervisors following discussions at the annual Residential Activity Centre (RAC) in October

All applications will be assessed based on the same criteria, mainly around the applicant's track record (excellence).


A Residential Activity Centre (RAC) will take place in October 2021. This will help students develop skills to work across the ONE Planet disciplines.

The first 3 days of this RAC include the 'PhD in a Week'. Group environmental mini-projects will be set which are based around 'Grand Challenges'. External organisations (including recent CASE partners) helping to define and mentor the challenges set.

The mini-projects will teach skills such as:

  • fieldwork
  • data management
  • numeracy
  • modelling
  • multidisciplinary awareness
  • teamwork
  • dealing with risk and uncertainty

Reflecting on their experiences, students will feed into their Training Needs Analysis (TNA) and proposal writing. RAC break-out activities will introduce the Vitae Researcher Development Framework (RDF), Chartership requirements of relevant professional societies, and employability.

Dates and locations of the RAC will be advertised well in advance. This enables students with caring responsibilities to make arrangements. We encourage students with disabilities to have an early conversation with their supervisor to make adjustments.


ONEPlanet is committed to promoting diversity, and we particularly encourage applications from under-represented groups. Flexible study requests are welcomed, and will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Eligibility Criteria:

Usually applicants are expected to have a first or 2:1 undergraduate degree - exceptions are possible, but these should be strongly motivated. In addition, candidates may also hold or be completing a Masters degree in a relevant subject discipline but this is not a mandatory requirement.

Home and International students (inc. EU) are welcome to apply. We have a limited number of International awards available, and applicants may be required to provide additional fees not covered by the UKRI Home fee contribution. Further information will be provided at application stage.



Complete our online application form, including a copy of your CV and a 1,000 word research proposal expanding on a suggested, pre-defined ONE Planet PhD project. Alternatively, outline your own research idea, with reference to a main supervisor who you identify as being an expert in this area. We strongly encourage you to contact your potential supervisor before submitting your application.

Please note that you can apply for one project within the DTP only.

If you are applying for a specific research vacancy with a pre-defined research proposal, you are still required to write a proposal. For guidance on writing your research proposal please see here.

Please submit an application to either Northumbria or Newcastle University via their application portals depending on the main supervisor of your chosen project, or your chosen main supervisor if outlining your own research idea.

The following documentation is required:

  • Your CV
  • Application form
  • Your 1,000-word personal statement (with your chosen project title and reference code e.g. OP21XX). Please explain how your knowledge, skills and experience fit with the project outline. 
  • Your 1,000-word project proposal (with project title and reference code OP21-XX). If you are outlining your own research idea please use reference code OP2100.
  • A minimum of two references. These can be submitted with your application if they are signed, or alternatively, they can be emailed directly by the referee to Please note that is is your responsibility to request these references and ensure they are sent to us. If submitting as part of your online application, please attach both references and your CV under the "add qualifications (education)" tab.
  • Attach degree transcripts and certificates and, if English is not your first language, a copy of your English language qualification

The closing date for applications is Monday 18th January 2021.


Further information can be found on the ONE Planet website.

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