Achieving the modal shift and transport decarbonisation targets of the Wales Transport Strategy and Net Zero Wales


An opportunity to apply for a funded full-time PhD in the College of Arts, Technology and Environment, UWE Bristol.  The studentship will be funded by UWE Bristol and the Welsh Government.

The expected start date of this studentship is 01 April 2023.

The closing date for applications is 19 February 2023.

Studentship details

Road transport is an important source of greenhouse gases and air pollutants, being responsible for significant emissions of carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and particulate matter. Welsh Government have set ambitious targets in their Transport and Net Zero Wales Strategies that rely heavily on transport demand management to reduce air pollution and carbon emissions. Alongside Transport and Net Zero Strategies, a Clean Air Bill is in development which will establish a framework for more ambitious air quality targets taking account of the latest WHO Air Quality Guidelines. 

Shifting demand from private vehicles to public transport and active travel to achieve these targets will require implementation of specific, targeted and effective policy measures. This research project aims to provide an evidence-based analysis to identify the policy measures that are likely to be most effective in helping Welsh Government to achieve these targets by the stated years, post-2025 (Welsh Government are on track to achieve 2025 targets).  In particular, the project will also focus on the suitability of different strategies to demand management in a Welsh context, and approaches to ensure equality, acceptability and public ‘buy in’. Example demand management measures may include a combination of road user charging schemes (e.g., tolls, CAZs, workplace parking levies), non-charging schemes (e.g., Low Traffic Neighbourhoods, road space reassignment), and behavioural mechanisms (e.g., enabling active travel/alternative modes). This project aims to understand what policy measures are required to meet the ambitious private and public transport demand management targets set out in the Wales Transport Strategy (and National Transport Delivery Plan), and Net Zero Wales. The objectives are:

  1. Policy review of relevant Welsh Government legislation/strategies to understand the policy/target context and any existing policy measures and monitoring and evaluation frameworks in place.
  2. Identify and critically evaluate interventions and demand management measures that might be most likely to be successful at a scale needed to meet targets for Wales – based on UK and wider international examples.
  3. Application of a Delphi process to engage relevant policymakers and practitioners.
  4. Take the findings of the stages above to explore with members of the public and assess their feasibility/acceptability.
  5. Depending on access to data, quantifying potential impact using maximum technical impact of measures against practical policy options.
  6. Synthesise and analyse the impacts of the above approaches to quantify the contribution of the considered interventions to meeting the targets.

For an informal discussion about the studentship, please email Jo Barnes at


The studentship is available from 01 April 2023 for a period of three and half years, subject to satisfactory progress and includes a tax-exempt stipend, which is currently £17,668 per annum. 

In addition, full-time tuition fees will be covered for up to three years (Home). 


Applicants must have a good first degree in an appropriate subject and ideally will have a Masters in Environmental Management, Transport, Geography, or a related discipline.

Being able to speak Welsh is desirable but not essential. However, the candidate must be willing to learn basic Welsh phrases and be comfortable with the pronunciation of Welsh place names.

How to apply

Please submit your application online. When prompted use the reference number 2223-APR-CATE07

Supporting documentation: You will need to upload your research proposal; all your degree certificates and transcripts and a recognised English language qualification is required.

References: You will need to provide details of two referees as part of your application.  

Closing date

The closing date for applications is 19 February 2023

Further information

It is expected that interviews will take place on week commencing 27 February 2023 .  If you have not heard from us by 24 February 2023, we thank you for your application but on this occasion you have not been successful.

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