HDR Scholarship - A Holistic Approach to Understanding and Addressing Sustainable Consumption

Applications now open

This PhD scholarship is part of the Cotutelle arrangement between Coventry University, UK and Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia. The successful applicant will spend 1 year at Deakin and 2.5 years at Coventry, with a supervision team drawn from the two Universities.

Project Supervisor

Dr David Bek (Coventry University)

Associate Supervisor

Professor Michael Polonsky (Deakin University)

School

Centre for Business in Society

Location

Coventry University

Research topic

This PhD scholarship is part of the Cotutelle arrangement between Coventry University, UK and Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia. The successful applicant will spend 1 year at Deakin and 2.5 years at Coventry, with a supervision team drawn from the two Universities. This project is offered as part of the Deakin-Coventry cotutelle program where the student is enrolled at both Deakin University and Coventry University (UK).

This opportunity focuses upon ethical/sustainable consumption. Consumers are powerful actors in the drive towards a more sustainable future, although their choices and actions are mediated by many factors including state regulation, ‘nudge’ behavioural programmes and corporate marketing. In a drive towards a sustainable future it is vital that there is better understanding of the factors driving consumer decision making. Within the free market systems of Western economies it is, ultimately the consumer who decides what to purchase and how to consume, thereby addressing their underlying wants and needs. It is an individual’s aggregate consumption that determines their impact upon sustainability, with some consumption behaviours creating a greater impact than others.

Applicants are invited to develop a research proposal which focuses upon consumers and the drivers of their decision-making and behaviours. This research can look at consumer behaviour from one of a number of different perspectives using a mix of qualitative and quantitative methods. Lines of enquiry may be drawn from the following questions:  How can we measure aggregate consumption decisions? What role do standards and certifications play in influencing consumers? Can social marketing help to generate more sustainable behaviours? How effectively is sustainability being promoted within consumption of a specific commodity, such as cut-flowers? Proposals looking at other commodities such as coffee, cocoa, fruit etc. will also be considered.

Project aim

The research will examine consumer behaviours and attitudes in the context of sustainability. Proposals may focus on: the roles of standards and certifications; sustainable consumption movements; the role of marketing; metrics for measuring-sustainability or commodity, such as cut-flowers focused approaches.

Important dates

Applications close 5pm, Sunday 20th January 2019.

Benefits

This scholarship is available over 3.5 years.

  • £15,000 Bursary plus tuition fees

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible you must:

  • be either a domestic or international candidate
  • meet Deakin's PhD entry requirements
  • be enrolling full time
  • hold a minimum of a 2:1 first degree (second class honours upper division) in a relevant discipline/subject area with a minimum 70% mark in the project element or equivalent with a minimum 70% overall module average, and/or
  • hold a Masters Degree in a relevant subject area will be considered as an equivalent. The Masters must have been attained with overall marks at 70%. In addition, the dissertation or equivalent element in the Masters must also have been attained with a mark at 70%
  • Language proficiency (IELTS overall minimum score of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in each component)
  • be able to physically locate to both Coventry University (England) and Deakin University (Australia).

Please refer to the research degree entry pathways page for further information or contact Coventry University via email.

Additional desirable criteria include:

  • The potential to engage in innovative research and to complete the PhD within a prescribed period of study

How to apply

Applicants must apply to both institutions.

Apply to Deakin via the Faculty of Business and Law Expression of Interest form. Learn more about submitting a successful application on Deakin's How to apply page.

AND

Applicants should apply via the Coventry online portal.

Contact us

For more information about this scholarship, please contact Dr David Bek or Prof Michael Polonsky

Dr David Bek
Senior Research Fellow, Coventry University
Email David Bek

Prof Michael Polonsky
Alfred Deakin Professor
Email Michael Polonsky
+61 3 924 46968