About this project
Access to rivers, lakes and coastal waters (‘blue space’) and green space provide social and health benefits. Urban blue and green spaces are also important for biodiversity, with positive interactions between organisms from both environments. Hull has a wide range of blue spaces: large public park lakes, reservoirs, drains, the River Hull that dissects the city from north to south, and the Humber, that bounds the south of the city. These spaces have a suite of plans centred on sustainable drainage and living with water and biodiversity management. For example, the Humber, the largest coastal plain estuary in the East Coast, is internationally recognised for migrating and wintering birds. Some of the blue spaces in Hull are inside public parks or local nature reserves, within green space, while others are surrounded by built environment or hard defences with little or no adjacent green space and no access to residents.
This proposed PhD will assess benefits for society of urban blue spaces surrounded by green spaces of different value in terms of biodiversity. This PhD project will 1) Evaluate the quality of habitats surrounding blue spaces in Hull; 2) assess the community benefits of blue spaces surrounded by different quality habitats, 3) identify areas where existing blue spaces could be greened or rewilded to enhance both future urban biodiversity and community benefits.
The PhD will develop in collaboration with a network of stakeholders including Hull City Council, Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, Humber Nature Partnership and others and interrogate national and regional databases (NEYED, NBN, iRecord) to design and successfully implement the project.
In addition, you will join a collaborative, multidisciplinary and nurturing environment to realise your potential, and will be provided with excellent opportunities for external networking. We will hold regular monthly meetings with the entire cluster, with opportunities to present and discuss research, invite internal and external speakers and collaborators and foster networking.
For informal enquiries, please contact Dr Africa Gómez.
About the REWILD research cluster
REWILD: understanding ecological, environmental and societal costs and benefits of rewilding.
We are experiencing a global climate and biodiversity crisis. Closer to home, more than half of UK species are in decline and a further 15% threatened with extinction. Rewilding - the large-scale restoration of ecosystems by allowing reinstatement of natural processes and missing species - is seen as one potential solution for the protection and recovery of ecosystems. The rewilding of terrestrial, freshwater and marine habitats can make a critical contribution to carbon sequestration, flood mitigation, water quality, biodiversity, and human wellbeing. However rewilding can also be highly controversial, with conflicts arising because of competing interests of different stakeholder groups. The REWILD research cluster at the University of Hull is a multidisciplinary team of researchers across biology, environmental science, psychology and systems thinking, working with diverse stakeholders to collectively understand the ecological, environmental and societal costs and benefits of rewilding. Our 6 PhD studentships focus on understanding i) the impacts of rewilding projects on biodiversity, sedimentation rates and carbon sequestration dynamics, ii) the community benefits of blue spaces, and the perceptions, values and challenges of rewilding the sea, and iii) how animal “personalities” drive public perceptions of species reintroductions.
Join us at a webinar on Thursday 16 December at 6pm to find out more about this PhD cluster. Register here.
Other PhDs in this cluster
Uncovering the Biodiversity Impacts of Rewilding on Entire Ecological Communities at a Landscape Scape Using Environmental DNA
Understanding Environmental Adaptability in Wild Mammalian Carnivores: a Multidisciplinary Perspective
Optimising Blue Carbon Storage in Estuaries Using Rewilding and Eco-engineering Approaches
Effective Biodiversity Monitoring of River Rewilding Projects Using eDNA Modelling
Rewilding the Sea: Perceptions, Values and Challenges