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People Centred Productivity as a Pathway to Achieving Timely Circular Economy Interventions

Duration: Full-Time – between three and three and a half years fixed term

Application deadline: 25 October 2024

Interview date: Will be confirmed to shortlisted candidates

Start date: January 2025

For further details contact Stephen Spooner


Organisations from individual businesses through to international political alliances are making legislating aspirations and strategising pathways to achieving Net zero goals.
To achieve net zero all parts of society will require adaptation, and to meet the timescales being set, change is required at a serviceable rate for intervention today as well as in years to come.

Project details

The ethos of circular economy presents a pathway many products and services can make significant strides towards Net zero, however the adaptation from current processes and products to those enabled by the circular economy is challenging as investment is market lead, and currently the market is limited.

The project looks to utilise an ethical combination of people and data to provide a transitional pathway to rapidly demonstrate and deliver future markets within the circular economy without the need for significant investment in either adapting complex design or capabilities through capex.

Utilising technologies included augmented reality, real time AI driven directed decision capabilities, lean manufacturing and mathematical modelling, this project will look to explore the potential for directed intervention within the recovery of materials and components in “end-of-life” goods. Developing the knowledge required for value intervention across recycling, reconditioning and materials manufacturing sectors.

The student will have the opportunity to interact with industrial collaborators including technology developers, recyclers and manufacturing organisations, offering the potential for exposure to wider implication of their research and for clear challenge direction and problem-solving requirements from key stakeholders in the delivery of circular economy solutions.


Tuition fees and bursary


The successful candidate will receive comprehensive research training including technical, personal and professional skills.

All researchers at Coventry University (from PhD to Professor) are part of the Doctoral College and Centre for Research Capability and Development, which provides support with high-quality training and career development activities.

Entry requirements

  • A minimum of a 2:1 first degree in a relevant discipline/subject area with a minimum 60% mark in the project element or equivalent with a minimum 60% overall module average.


  • The potential to engage in innovative research and to complete the PhD within a 3.5 years.
  • A minimum of English language proficiency (IELTS academic overall minimum score of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in each component).

How to apply

To find out more about the project, please contact Stephen Spooner

All applications require full supporting documentation, a covering letter, plus a 2000-word supporting statement showing how the applicant’s expertise and interests are relevant to the project.

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