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About the PhD programme

The PhD programme in Environmental Science aims at developing scientific competence and interdisciplinary research across departments.

Environmental science is the scientific study of environmental problems caused by humanity, including climate change. The subject combines the study of human impact on natural processes along with the measures and strategies that can be implemented to prevent, avert or counteract environmental problems and achieve long-term sustainable development.

Environmental science research is based on a fundamental understanding of natural processes and how they are affected by human activity and therefore has a broad base in traditional subjects such as biology, chemistry, physics, geology and physical geography. It also includes studies of relevant measures and strategies to address environmental problems. This means that the research is based on an interdisciplinary approach in collaboration across traditional subject borders.

The main fields of research in environmental science are:

  • the study of chemical substances’ spread, changes and dispersion in air, soil and water, and the consequent effects on people, other organisms, the climate and ecosystems
  • the study of humanity’s impact on climate and ecosystems, and the consequences for biological diversity and opportunities to sustainably utilise ecosystems for the production of ecosystem services
  • the study of environmental and climatic consequences of humanity’s utilisation of energy and natural resources, and strategies for long-term sustainable production and consumption
  • the study of strategies, evidence-based decision-making, nature-based and technical solutions that prevent environmental and climatic problems from arising, or can be used to address such problems.

Environmental science research concerns both a basic understanding of how environmental problems arise and how to contribute to a basis of knowledge for the long-term, sustainable development of society. Research is therefore often carried out in close cooperation with organisations active in society within this field.