mphil-phd-agri-environmental-economics by jianglifang


									                                   UNIVERSITY OF KENT

                            FACULTY OF SOCIAL SCIENCES

                                KENT BUSINESS SCHOOL

            Research Programme: MPhil/PhD Agri-Environmental Economics

1.   Award and Title
     MPhil/PhD: Agri-Environmental Economics

2.   Length and Mode of Registration
     PhD: A minimum of three consecutive years full-time, five years part-time. In
     exceptional circumstances the period of registration could be reduced with the
     approval of the Faculty Committee by not more than one year.
     MPhil: A minimum of two years full-time, three years part-time.

3.   Entry Requirements
     The normal minimum entrance requirement for the registration for MPhil/PhD in Agri-
     Environmental Economics is either
     a/ First/upper second class honours in a relevant discipline of a UK university or an
     equivalent standard obtained overseas extending over not less than 3 years in a
     University (or educational institution of equivalent rank)
     b/ A relevant Masters level degree in the UK University or an equivalent standard
     obtained overseas.
     An applicant for registration must produce satisfactory evidence of having attained a
     standard equivalent to that demanded in a/ or b/ above.
     Applications for admission to postgraduate research will be considered by the
     School Director of Research and the potential supervisors. Where practicable an
     interview will take place. The Director of Research will give careful consideration to
     the suitability and qualifications of applicants and will be satisfied that appropriate
     expertise for supervision and adequate resources for the proper conduct of the
     research will be available.
     Where the applicant’s first language is not English, evidence will be required of
     proficiency in written and spoken English in line with the standards required by the
     University at the time of admission and published in its prospectus. Where further
     English language training is required, the Director of Research will ensure that
     appropriate arrangements are made.
4.   Registration
     A candidate for a research degree in Agri-Environmental Economics will be
     registered initially for MPhil degree. The Director of Research may give permission
     for registration for the MPhil/PhD degree with exemption from part of the course of
     study a person who has commenced a course of study for the MPhil or PhD
     degree of another University in the UK, provided that the course of study in KBS is
     not less than one calendar year or its equivalent in part-time study. In cases of
     exceptionally qualified candidates the School’s Director of Research can recommend
     a direct registration for PhD degree.

5.   Anticipated Total Student Registrations
     Up to 5 per annum. In most cases funding is externally generated by research
     grants from the UK Research Councils’ disciplinary and multidisciplinary programmes
     (e.g. rural economy and land use - RELU); UK public institutions (e.g. DEFRA,
     FSA); the EU Framework research programmes; and industry funding bodies.

6.   Programme Management
     KBS is responsible for the programme. This responsibility will be managed under
     the auspices of the School’s Director of Research, Professor John Mingers.
     The Director of Research will ensure the appointment of supervisors for each
     student. Due to the potential synergies and complementarities in research interests
     with the Department of Economics, in some cases, the Director of Research could
     advise on a joint supervision with a member of the Economics Department.

7.   Proposed Start Date
     2008/9 academic year

8.   Evidence of Need and Demand for the Programme
     The complex interaction of economic forces and environmental demands in urban
     and rural areas across the globe is a rapidly expanding field of research. The
     interest in agri-environmental economics cuts across agricultural and other types of
     primary production, natural resource management, business issues, countryside
     concerns, as well as policy and trade considerations. The University of Kent and
     KBS are developing and promoting green research. KBS and its Centre for
     European Agri-Environmental Studies (CEAS) are keen to contribute fully to this
     development and utilise in full the academic expertise which was added to KBS with
     the transfer of Applied Economics and Business Management, and CEAS, from
     Imperial College to KBS.

     Currently, KBS offers registration for graduate programmes by research in
     Management, Industrial Relations, Management Science, Operations Research, and
     Accounting and Finance. The School has adequate procedures for training and
     supervision of research work of MPhil/PhD candidates. School’s MPhil/PhD students
     take part in the training at the faculty level taking faculty research training modules.
     They also have the option to take the modules available on the KBS Management
     suite of programmes on the basis of an individual student needs and according to
     advice from the supervisors and doctoral committee. Some students are taking
     modules at the Department of Economics. The new MPhil/PhD programme is
     cognate to the above mentioned departmental graduate programmes by research
     and will be resourced from within the existing resources of KBS. Currently there are
     at least 3 registered MPhil/PhD students (and funding is available for additional
     students) who are researching in the area of agri-environmental economics. Also,
     there are other registered students who feel that their research fits better within the
     area of agri-environmental economics. However, they all had to register for the
     programme in Management due to the lack of a more suitable option. This proposal
     aims at filling this existing gap.
     The MPhil/PhD programme in Agri-Environmental Economics will train students in
     high quality scientific and research skills which will make upon successful
     completion the individuals capable of assuming positions of responsibility in
     academia, public administration, international organisations – specialised and general
     - and industry. It may also provide a useful and attractive post-graduate
     qualification for those young practitioners wishing to continue their professional
     development and become prepared to deal with the complex agri-environmental
     issues which face the policy-makers and industry.

9.   Aims and Objectives
     The general programme aims are identical with the aims of the existing MPhil/PhD
     programmes in KBS:
      To foster doctoral research of the highest quality, which complements the School’s
       other research activities and reinforces its reputation for world-class excellence.
      To develop graduates who are qualified for careers in top academic institutions
       and in leading professional and managerial posts.

     On successful completion of the MPhil programme, students have demonstrated:
      a good grounding in relevant research methods and techniques;
      the ability to critically analyse and evaluate their own findings and those of
       others, in order to formulate research hypotheses;

       a systematic understanding of knowledge, and a critical awareness of current
            issues and policies in the area of agri-environment;
       the ability to conduct a research project in the field of agri-environmental
            economics using appropriate research methods.

          On successful completion of the PhD programme, students will also have
           a comprehensive understanding of the theoretical developments in the area of
            agri-environmental economics;
           systematically acquired understanding of the substantial body of knowledge on
            methodological tools which are at the forefront of development of agri-
            environmental economics;
           the ability to conceptualise, design and conduct a research project to generate
            new knowledge, application or understanding;
           that they have contributed to the creation and/or interpretation of new knowledge
            through original research or other advanced scholarly activity, of a quality to
            satisfy peer review and merit publication in specialised journals.

          Typically, successful PhD students will have demonstrated the skills and abilities
           to make informed judgements on complex issues in the field of agri-
            environmental economics;
           to communicate their ideas and conclusions clearly and effectively to specialist
            and non-specialist audiences;
           to continue to undertake research and develop knowledge at an advanced level,
            contributing substantially to the development of new techniques, ideas or

10.   Programme Outline
      (a)     Details of the Research Training that the student will be expected to
              All students will be given a full induction to the Business School, which will
              ensure that they obtain the relevant training in health and safety, risk
              assessment and other relevant matters.

          Research training
                 Preparing research protocol.

            Ethical issues, including principles governing requirements for obtaining
             ethical committee approval, confidentiality if required and data protection.
            Tutorials on computer software use if necessary.
            Briefing on the use of the University library and online search and journal
            Regular review of published evidence on the selected research topic and
             discussion of these with the supervisors.

(b)    Details of other courses students may benefit
            Attendance on University of Kent courses, in particular
             (a) courses run in the Business School;
             (b) courses within the Faculty of Social Sciences which may be relevant,
      e.g.                 Research Methods, and/or the Faculty Research Training
             (c) MSc modules offered by the Department of Economics. Students who
      will take     such modules must satisfy the MSc entry requirements of the
            Attendance at national or international meetings, relevant symposia and
            Attendance on courses in writing skills or English language as appropriate.
            Faculty of Social Science Transferable Skills Training.

(c)    Details of progression milestones that the student will need to reach and
       successfully pass (to include transfer from a lower qualification to a higher
       qualification e.g. MPhil to PhD)
            Preparation of acceptable research protocol.
            Obtaining ethical committee approval if required.
            Conducting pilot research and evaluating research procedures.
            Primary or other data collection.
            Preparation, analysis and presentation of research results at appropriate
             scientific meetings.
            Submission of completed thesis.
            Successful defence of thesis.

(d)    Details of the assessment method (e.g.: by thesis etc)
            Regular review meetings with supervisors.
            Structured annual review, including presentation of findings to date, an
             informal but structured discussion with supervisors and advisor, submission
             of University of Kent progress report form.

            Submission of MPhil thesis (after 2 years) and/or PhD thesis (after 3 years)
             to at least one internal and an external examiner.
            Viva voce examination (optional for MPhil).

11.   Approved Supervisors
      Six approved Supervisory Chairs in KBS have scholarly interests either exclusively
      in the area of Agri-Environmental Economics or in complementary fields. In
      addition, there are six co-supervisors with expertise in agri-environmental modelling
      and scholarly interests in complex issues such as the challenges to the agri-
      environment stemming from climate change. The list of currently approved
      supervisory Chairs and co-supervisors with research interests in Agri-Environmental
      Economics within KBS is presented in Appendix 1. The list of approved
      supervisors from the Economics Department is available from the Faculty of Social
      Sciences. As the new MPhil/PhD programme is cognate to the existing Business
      School graduate research programmes, according to the University Code of
      Practice for Research Programmes, the Supervisory Chairs for the new programme
      can be approved at the discretion of the Faculty Director of Graduate Studies.

12.   Research Environment
      The new MPhil/PhD degree will bring research students into a research-active
      environment of a high standard. The research Centre for European Agri-
      Environmental Studies at KBS has six core members all of them research active
      and included in the 2008 RAE. Currently, they supervise research students at both
      KBS and Imperial College. In addition, six more School academics work on the
      complementary issues of corporate social, including environmental, sustainability;
      food, consumer choice and nutrition. The members of CEAS are presented in
      Appendix 2.
      The CEAS members work both on the development of new methodologies for the
      economic analysis of natural resource-based industries, and the application of such
      methodologies to analyse specific research issues in these industries. This
      analytically strong group of economists and policy analysts works primarily on the
      economic development of the European Union and specifically on the role, impact
      and performance of its agricultural and food industries. An additional component of
      this research is the role of government policy in relation to the problems both of
      environmental damage in the agricultural landscape and the positive externalities
      associated with the production of food, fibers and energy.
      The group also benefits from close working relationship with the private agricultural
      and food industry consulting firm AgraCEAS which is part-owned by the University
      of Kent and is based in Wye and Brussels. The private funding provided by the

      part-ownership is used to mount an active Research Seminar Programme in Agri-
      Environmental area, to organise symposia and workshops, and to support PhD
      The group's research attracts high levels of financial support from the Joint
      Research Council's RELU (Bailey, Fraser I), the food industry, the FSA and the
      HGCA (Fraser I, Fearne, Garcia), the EU (Davidova, Fraser R, Bailey) and DEFRA
      (Fraser R, Bailey, Davidova), generating high quality publications in leading
      specialist journals such as the American J. Agricultural Economics, Ecological
      Economics, Land Economics and the J Productivity Analysis. Much of this funded
      research is both multi-disciplinary and multi-partnered.
      The research achievements of this group are substantial, measured on both an
      inputs and an outputs basis. External competitive research funding per academic
      staff member is the highest in KBS, while the journal publications of many of the
      staff have received considerable user-recognition. For example, R Fraser (JAE
      2003) was the most down-loaded article of its volume for the entire 2004-2005
      period, while I Fraser (AJARE 2003) won that journal's (annual) prize for the best
      article in the volume. In addition, Bailey (Agricultural Economics 2004) was
      selected from 250 competing papers for inclusion in its special issue of the
      As a consequence of their research achievements, the external profile and policy
      impact of this group has also been substantial. In particular, R Fraser has been
      an Academic Advisor to the Food Standards Agency since 2001 and to DEFRA
      since 2003 (including as a Member of its Science Advisory Council's
      Epidemiological Diseases Sub-Committee in 2005-06). Most recently, he has been
      appointed as a Consultant to the World Bank. In addition, R Fraser and I Fraser
      were commissioned by the OECD in 2006 to prepare a report on “Informational
      Asymmetries in Agri-environmental Policy”, while Davidova is a Member of the
      EU's DG Agriculture Network of Agricultural Experts.

13.   Student Support and Guidance
      The MPhil/PhD in Agri-Environmental Economics will build on the School’s existing
      research strengths to maintain and enhance the quality of its postgraduate
      research programmes. It is envisaged that principal source of support and
      guidance for students will be provided by their academic supervisors. As stated in
      6, the School’s Director of Research will ensure the appointment of supervisors for
      each student. MPhil/PhD students in Agri-Environmental Economics will use all the
      facilities available to School’s students in the other research programmes, as well
      as the University’s support services.

14.   Departmental Quality Assurance and Enhancement
      Progress of the student will be monitored by a formal review at the end of each
      year. Interim reviews will be held half-yearly. Students and their supervisors are
      normally expected to meet at least monthly, and more frequently at the start of
      the research programme.

15.   Departmental Resource Implications
      With the transfer of the research Centre for European Agri-Environmental Studies
      from Imperial College to KBS specialised staff expertise is already in place.
      Students are provided with supervision, access to computers, library and
      appropriate research facilities to complete the planned programme of study and
      research. Students will also benefit from both the School’s long-standing weekly
      research seminars - one focused on agri-environmental economics and the other
      on broader management issues – and the Research Seminar series in the
      Economics Department.
      Supervisory time is allocated within the Department’s workload allocation model.

16.   Professional Accreditation
      Not relevant.

Appendix 1

Supervisory Chair

Dr A Bailey
Dr S Davidova
Dr A Fearne
Dr I Fraser
Prof R Fraser
Dr D Petrovici


Dr S Di Falco
Dr M Garcia
Dr J Haddock-Fraser
Dr J O’Hanley
Dr J Sauer
Dr D Souza Monteiro

Appendix 2

Academic staff – members of the Centre for European Agri-Environmental Studies

Core Members

Dr S Davidova – CEAS Director
Dr A Bailey
Dr S Di Falco
Dr I Fraser
Prof R Fraser
Dr J Sauer

KBS Academics with complementary scholarly interests

Dr A Fearne
Dr M Garcia
Dr J Haddock-Fraser
Dr J O’Hanley
Dr D Petrovici
Dr D Souza Monteiro


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