|Funding for:||UK Students, EU Students, International Students|
|Funding amount:||£17,668 in Session 2022/23|
|Placed On:||31st January 2023|
|Closes:||27th February 2023|
Session 2023-24 - Closing Date 17:00 (UK time) 27 February 2023
The online application form can be found at:
Awards provide fees and maintenance at standard UKRI Rates (£17,668 in Session 2022/23) for eligible applicants.
Rail travel has been severely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, with passenger numbers falling more than any other mode. Railway operators around the world have attempted to bring passengers back to rail through a range of policies, but current ridership is still substantially lower than pre-pandemic levels. The UK government increased from £10.4 billion to £16.9 billion as a result of the 77% reduction in passenger number resulting from the pandemic. To make rail financially sustainable and ensure that the recovery of travel patterns is in line with decarbonisation objectives, the rail industry and travel behaviour researchers seek to understand the factors that will maintain and potentially enhance the attractiveness of rail travel over the next 30 years. Will passengers expect faster trains, or will they prioritise comfort and the ability to work and relax while travelling? How will rail interact with new modes, such as shared mobility, autonomous vehicles, advanced air mobility (AAM) and hyperloop? Will new modes become a complement to or substitute for rail – and how will they affect the contribution of passenger rail to the journey as a whole? the answers to these questions will have wide ranging implications, not only for rail (eg future capacity needs, the planning of rail services, and the design of stations and vehicles), but also for other modes (eg the provision of road space), as well as associated implications for society such as economic efficiency, social equity and decarbonisation.
The project, in collaboration with Network Rail, aims to explore the future challenges facing rail by exploring Network Rail’s unique positioning as the provider of GB’s rail infrastructure, together with the internationally recognised expertise of the Institute for Transport Studies at the University of Leeds in the fields of economics and behavioural/choice modelling applied to rail and transport more generally. The student will gather new and existing qualitative and quantitative data, to develop behavioural models that will elicit understanding of the factors affecting current rail demand, and inform predictions of how demand will change in response to a range of future scenarios.
Network Rail will potentially exploit the new knowledge developed in the course of this project to inform policy and planning in a range of different areas. The successful applicant will have the opportunity to undertake a 3-month virtual internship, with the possibility of 4-week in-person period as well as a minimum of 5 visits to Network Rail’s offices.
Further information on the project and application procedure can be found at:
Further information about how to apply, please contact the Graduate School:
For more information on the project, please contact Chiara Calastri:
Type / Role: