UC Connect Doctoral Scholarship


These scholarships are co-funded by UC and external agencies to support students for study towards a research doctoral degree at the University. The scholarships are available to support work on specific funded projects only. Projects will become available throughout the year. Available projects will be advertised here, along with the specific closing date for each application. Applications can be accepted only for specified projects. For details of a specific project please contact the project leader; for general enquiries please contact Professor Bryce Williamson.

CURRENT SCHOLARSHIP: Inferring city-scale particulate matter emissions sources through inverse modelling

Closing date: 15 December 2018

We are seeking an enthusiastic and motivated student to work on applied air pollution research in New Zealand as part of a wider collaboration between Bodeker Scientific (lead organization), NIWA, Sigma Space (based in Washington DC), the University of Canterbury and the University of Otago.

Emissions of particulate matter (PM), reactive gases, and greenhouse gases (GHGs) from industry, transport, and domestic activities degrade air quality in cities. In New Zealand, it is primarily emissions of PM from burning wood or fossil fuels that are of concern. PM remains suspended in the air where it can be inhaled, increasing the chances of developing heart-related illnesses and lung-related diseases. In addition to PM, emissions of gases such as carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen oxides (NOx), and volatile organic compounds (VOCs), contribute to poor air quality. Furthermore, CO and VOCs react with NOx to form tropospheric ozone, which is a GHG and an air pollutant. While most New Zealand towns and cities fortunately do not experience photochemical smog, for many megacities internationally, smog is a serious health hazard urgently requiring remediation.

Actions to mitigate PM and gaseous emissions require information on emissions sources, which have traditionally been identified using bottom-up accounting exercises. This PhD project will focus on mesoscale modelling and development of a novel method to trace PM to its emission source. There will also be the opportunity to interact with the project measurement team who will be conducting a field campaign in the New Zealand winter of 2019 to collect measurements suitable for validating the model-based studies.

Candidates should have a sound knowledge of atmospheric physics and/or chemistry, strong mathematical skills, programming skills (preferably Python), and an ability to write and communicate effectively. Experience with the WRF (Weather Research & Forecasting) model will be advantageous. The student will be based in the UC School of Physical and Chemical Sciences and supervised by Dr Marwan Katurji (Department of Geography), Dr Laura Revell (School of Physical and Chemical Sciences) and Dr Greg Bodeker (Bodeker Scientific, Alexandra). Additional information on the MAPM project is available here.

Application form and specific regulations for UC-Bodeker Scientific Ltd Connect Doctoral Scholarship


The scholarship is tenable by full-time and part-time students engaged in study for a doctoral degree at the University. An applicant must have completed an appropriate qualification at a level judged to be equivalent to a bachelor's or master's degree with first-class honours or distinction at the University (equivalent to a UC GPA of at least 7.0).

$21,000 per 120 points of thesis enrolment, plus tuition fees for thesis enrolment only, at the New Zealand domestic rate
3 years
Closing Dates
Always Open

How to apply for this scholarship

You may apply through this webpage approximately 8 weeks before applications close. If it’s possible to apply on-line for this scholarship there will be a link above to the on-line system. If the link is not provided, please download and complete the application form located below.

However, if the scholarship is managed by Universities NZ or another department of the University an External Website link will appear below and application instructions will be available through that link.


Application required only. General (any College). Postgraduate.


While every effort has been made to ensure the above information is current and correct, applicants are advised to check the application forms and regulations for eligibility criteria, scholarship value and tenure, and closing dates.