Announcement of Opportunity: UCT – UEA Climate Change PhD Researcher Exchange Scheme


The ACDI, on behalf of the UCT climate change community, has been successful in a Newton Fund (NRF/RCUK) application for a PhD Partnering Programme on Climate Change between The University of Cape Town (UCT) and the University of East Anglia (UEA). The aim of the partnership is to bring PhD students and their supervisors from both institutions together through visits of students and staff between the institutions. In addition to benefits for individual students, there is also a strategic aim of fostering long term collaborations between research groups and individuals.

The following specific focus areas were identified as areas of particular (but not exclusively) synergy:

• Understanding the climate system, including the ocean and atmosphere
• Developing capacity to cope with a changing climate – in particular integrated modelling of impacts, and adaptation in a developing country context.

However, the scheme welcomes exchanges in other climate change related topics, including energy and mitigation.

In short, the Newton PhD Partnering Scheme will provide funds for 3 to 4 visits by UCT PhD students to UEA each year, 2016-2018, for periods of 3-6 months; and vice versa for UEA students to visit UCT. There is also funding available for one faculty or senior research staff member trip each way per year. Where possible, students will visit in cohorts to facilitate integration.

We are proposing the first exchange start in early 2017 (outgoing UCT students) and end of August 2017 (incoming UEA students). These dates correspond with UEA’s Tyndall Centre PhD conference (and covers several other activities around that time, including a range of short courses).

In 2017 UCT aims to send 2-3 PhD researchers to visit UEA. As a first step we ask that supervisors and PhD researchers discuss this opportunity, and to make direct contacts with potential hosts at UEA. Please bear in mind the strategic long-term aspiration of this partnership when making contacts. This is also an advance notice to start thinking about partnering possibilities for PhD students and to think about joint PhD projects for 2018 and 2019 that can leverage more strategically off this funding.

Criteria and Eligibility.
• Students should be working on topics within the broad areas of climate change described above.
• The visit should add specific value to the PhD student's research skills and experience (e.g. access to equipment and laboratories; attendance of a short course; supervision/advice by an expert not available at home institution)
• The visit should have the potential for either building on existing, or creating new, supervisor links.

Application Process.
To express interest for the 2017 cohort as well as interest for the programme more generally (2017- 2018), click here for further information. Queries can be directed to Leigh Cobban at or 021 650 3846.