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Novel Control Method for Weeds and Biology affecting Sports Turf Three Year PhD Studentship

Crop & Environmental Sciences

Salary:  As per advert
Post Type:  Full Time
Closing Date:  23.59 hours GMT on Friday 13 December 2019
Interview Date:  To be confirmed
Reference:  RD-PHD-41LC

The All England Lawn Tennis Club PhD Studentship at Harper Adams University

Harper Adams University is the UK's leading agri-food university, with a very active research programme addressing themes such as the soil sustainability and integrated pest management.  Harper Adams University has a thriving PhD community located in Shropshire with access to transport links to Birmingham and Stafford and excellent local amenities.

In collaboration with the All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) in Wimbledon, the impacts of a novel method of controlling weeds and soil pests and microbes will be investigated and developed for effective sports turf management.  While initial application of the method has been promising, this project will investigate the underlying mechanisms of the impacts of the method including on the soil biome, soil structural impacts and interactions with soil nutrients important for the production of grass or sports turf.  Alongside field investigations using some of the tennis courts at the AELTC in Wimbledon, there is scope to design a range of experiments at Harper Adams on aspects including soil biodiversity, soil structure, and nutrient dynamics thereby allowing development of the candidate's skills across multiple disciplines.  Attendance at national and international conferences is expected and encouraged with some funding available.

The university wishes to recruit a PhD student to address the subject matter outlined above.  The candidate should have an excellent academic record with a primary degree in agriculture, microbiology, or biological/environmental sciences. An MSc in similar topics would be an advantage.  The project will be run and supervised in collaboration between the All England Lawn Tennis Club and Harper Adams University.  The student will be primarily located at Harper Adams University with regular visits to AELTC in Wimbledon.

Applications should be made through the HAU website where further details of the project can also be found.

The deadline for uploading completed applications is 5pm UK time on Friday, 13 December 2019.

Further information can be found on the HAU website at and on the research training provided and PhD progression requirements in the Postgraduate Research Students Handbook at:

For informal enquiries on general aspects of research degrees at HAU, applicants may contact Mrs Vivien Slann, Postgradute Research Students Administrator ( For informal enquiries on the project, applicants may contact the Director of Studies, Dr Lucy Crockford, at

The three year studentship includes tuition, bench and writing up fees and a tax-free stipend at the RCUK rate for 2019/2020 ((£15,009 per annum).

A minimum level of competency in English is required.  Where necessary, applicants need to be classed as an overall IELTS grade 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each component.  Please see the following link with regard to English Language requirements:

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Harper Adams University is one of the premier UK Higher Education Institutions focused on the land-based and food supply chain sector.

With 2800 undergraduate students, plus those completing postgraduate, research and CPD programmes, Harper Adams is the UK's largest single provider of higher education for these subjects.  Programmes fall into eleven broad subject areas – but none operate in isolation. Community and collaboration are key at Harper Adams, meaning everyone, including staff, students and industry partners, benefits from a close network of knowledge and opportunity exchange

Situated in Shropshire, the campus and the surrounding area provide an excellent working and living environment for staff and students alike.

Harper Adams is consistently positioned highly in a range of national ratings, performance measures and league tables. Its current graduate employment rate is 98% (the joint top rating in England) and student satisfaction stands at 93% (National Student Survey 2017).

Harper Adams is ranked as the UK’s Best Modern University by the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2018; was named University of the Year in the 2016 and 2017 Whatuni Student Choice Awards and holds a Gold (highest level) award from the Government’s Teaching Excellence Framework.

In 2018 Harper Adams University will receive the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Further and Higher Education, part of the UK honours system.

Applied research is at the heart of the university’s activity, with the work of a thriving academic community underpinning both teaching and work with the industries allied to Harper. The 2014 Government Research Excellence Framework rated all of the university’s research as “of international quality”, and more than half was deemed “world leading” or “internationally excellent”. 



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