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PhD Studentship: Consumer Product Design for Remanufacture and the Circular Economy

Loughborough University

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Loughborough
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: £15,009 p/a, plus tuition fees at the UK/EU rate (currently £4,327 p/a)
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 28th June 2019
Closes: 16th August 2019
Reference: WS06

Application details:

Reference number: WS06

Start date of studentship: 1st January 2020

Closing date of advert: 16th August 2019


Primary supervisor: Dr Ian Graham

Secondary supervisor: TBC from Loughborough Design School’s Sustainable Design Research Group or Wolfson School’s Centre for Sustainable Manufacturing and Recycling Technologies (SMART)

Short Introductory Paragraph

Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014). In choosing Loughborough for your research, you’ll work alongside academics who are leaders in their field. You will benefit from comprehensive support and guidance from our Doctoral College, including tailored careers advice, to help you succeed in your research and future career.

Find out more:

Full Project Detail:  

There is no doubt among experts that current consumer culture is unsustainable. Whether technical or user-centred, subtle or disruptive; we need solutions.

Remanufacturing is now widespread, especially in the industrial machinery and automotive sectors. However, consumer product remanufacturing is still rare, for diverse and complex reasons including consumer resistance, rapidly changing markets, and the predominance of plastics. So the problem is highly multidisciplinary, covering (at least) psychology, economics and materials. Product Design is at the intersection of all these disciplines, so who better to investigate this challenge than a designer?

A practice-based research approach is envisaged – in other words a major outcome of the PhD will be the design of a tangible product that will be both a research tool in itself, and a showcase for the discoveries made during the wider, exploratory research. We have piloted this project successfully twice before with undergraduates on our Product Design Engineering course. A three-year duration gives us huge scope to expand the scale and ambition – we look forward to hearing your proposals.

Entry requirements:

Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in Product Design or a related subject. A relevant Master’s degree and/or experience in one or more of the following will be an advantage: Industrial Design; Design for Behaviour Change; Sustainable Design and Manufacturing; Remanufacturing.

Funding information:

Please note that studentships will be awarded on a competitive basis to applicants who have applied to this project and other advertised projects starting with advert reference ‘WS’ for the School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering.

If awarded, each 3-year studentship will provide a tax-free stipend of £15,009 p/a, plus tuition fees at the UK/EU rate (currently £4,327 p/a). While we welcome applications from non-EU nationals, please be advised that it will only be possible to fund the tuition fees at the international rate and no stipend will be available. Successful candidates will be notified by 30th September 2019.

Contact details:

Name: Dr Ian Graham

Email address:

Telephone number: +44 1509 227500

How to apply:

All applications should be made online at  Under programme name, select ‘Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering’.

Please quote reference number: WS06

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