Job Vacancy: Funded PhD Studentship on Sustainable, Healthy & Liveable Cities of the Future

Closing Date for Applications: 30th July 2021. 12.00

University: University College Cork

Research Centre:
School of Engineering and Architecture and MaREI Centre, Environmental Research Institute

Contract Type: Fixed-term, Whole-time Post

Job Type: Research

Salary: €16,000 per annum stipend

Duration: 4 years

Project Outline

This PhD project focuses on advancing the science and technology underpinning sustainable, healthy and liveable cities of the future. This frontier research project will employ largescale Information Communications Technologies (ICT) datasets, artificial intelligence, machine learning and statistical methods to quantify urban environmental metrics (e.g. air pollution and greenspace) and urban dynamics in unprecedented accuracy and scale in a number of case study cities. The project will then investigate human-environment interactions and analyse associations between urban environmental exposures and health impacts to inform future urban design and environmental health policies. The project will be supervised by Dr. Marguerite Nyhan who is a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Engineering & Future Sustainability in the School of Engineering & Architecture at UCC.

Nyhan Future Sustainability Research Group

The Nyhan Future Sustainability Research Group at UCC investigates and develops intelligent solutions for sustainable, zero-carbon, healthy, liveable and equitable cities of the future. Led by Dr Marguerite Nyhan, the group employs state-of-the-art technologies and methodologies from a number of disciplines including engineering, computer science, urban planning, public health and sociology to achieve its vision. The Nyhan Future Sustainability Research Group sits within the School of Engineering & Architecture, the MaREI Centre for Energy, Climate & Marine and the Environmental Research Institute at University College Cork.

As the challenges of urbanisation, environmental degradation and climate change are complex and multi-faceted, the Future Sustainability Research Group recognises that pathways towards a sustainable future will only be achieved by successfully harnessing emerging technologies including data analytics and artificial intelligence; by embracing complexity; by fostering a systems thinking approach and by engaging with people, policymakers and government. Its research falls into two major categories – ‘Sustainable Future Cities’ and ‘Technology, Policy & Society’. See for more details.

University College Cork was ranked the 8th most impactful university world-wide for its work on the UN Sustainable Development Goals in to the Times Higher Education World Impact Rankings.

Candidate Profile

  • A first-class honours degree (or equivalent) in environmental engineering, electrical engineering, computer science, data science or a similar discipline
  • Highly motivated, detail orientated and committed with a keen interest in creative and multidisciplinary research
  • Some experience in data analytics, statistics, urban sustainability and environmental health is advantageous but not essential
  • Excellent communication, organisation and interpersonal skills
  • A record of peer-reviewed journal publications is advantageous but not essential
  • Applicants whose first language is not English must show evidence of English proficiency (e.g. IELTS minimum 6.5, individual sections 6.0), please check the requirements at:


This full-time PhD programme includes a stipend of €16,000 per annum and is tenable for a maximum of 4 years. EU fees are covered by the grant. Non-EU candidates will require a non-EU fee waiver.

Further Information

For informal enquiries on the post, candidates should contact Dr Marguerite Nyhan (ei.ccu@nahyn.etireugram) at the School of Engineering & Architecture at University College Cork.

To Apply:

Submit an electronic copy of your CV (including full details of all university course grades to date) and a motivation letter (750 words maximum) that clearly describes why you are interested in and are suitable for this research position. Please also include the contact details of two referees. These documents should be emailed to Dr Marguerite Nyhan (ei.ccu@nahyn.etireugram). Please use the subject line “PhD Application – (applicant first and last name)”.

The Nyhan Future Sustainability Research Group encourages applications from minorities and under-represented groups.

The closing date for applications is Friday, 30th July 2021, with interviews taking place shortly thereafter.

It is expected that the candidate will start as soon as possible after September 1st 2021.