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Postgraduate Study

The Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience provides a Risks Masters course and opportunities for PhD research. This includes Action for Natural Disasters (AND) Doctoral Training. 


Risk Masters 

HRR works with the Geography Department to offer a cross-University, Masters level programme in Risk (MA and MSc). The primary aim of the Risk Masters programme is to equip students with a general understanding of risk; whilst simultaneously providing specific training in a range of elements of risk-related research. This is achieved through an interdisciplinary framework for understanding risk from a variety of perspectives. 

These unique taught Masters programmes have been designed to provide critical training in core methodologies and to offer in-depth analysis in one element of contemporary risk. Delivered by world-leading experts the Masters Programmes in Risk are targeted at a wide range of potential students, including professionals seeking training for career advancement and those wishing to pursue research degrees. 

Graduates from this programme are highly employable, and many past graduates are employed in a range of positions around the world in the rapidly expanding risk industry. Graduates have been successful at gaining jobs in:  

  • risk-related consultancy and private sector 
  • catastrophe modelling within the insurance industry 
  • government policy and the public service 
  • and some have secured funding to pursue higher research degrees. 

MA Geography (Risk) - L7K407 

MSc Geography (Risk) - L7K409 


PhD Research 

We fund and work with a group of world-leading researchers who focus upon doctoral research. We offer space, both physical and intellectual, for doctoral students working in the University on Hazard and Risk to benefit from interdisciplinary engagement from IHRR colleagues, staff and visitors.  

Resources include: 

  • Risk Masters modules 
  • public lectures, seminars, workshops and conferences 
  • special student-led research initiatives 
  • the opportunity for day-to-day exchange provided through facilities like the Gordon Manley Room, the Institute’s magnificent social space. 

We convene a Postgraduate Research Forum which is organised by PhD students to present and discuss research being undertaken across Durham University related to the themes of hazard, risk and resilience. The Postgraduate Forum meets four times a year. 

IHRR works with Departments across Durham University to host PhD students, so each student will be registered with a home department that manages admissions, progression, and examinations. 

Past PhD Titles:

  • Ensuring resilience through rebuilding post-earthquake; the case of Pakistan. Funded by Christopher Moyes Memorial Fund. 
  • Gendered impacts of disasters on healthcare access and gaps in prevailing disaster management plans. Funded by Christopher Moyes Memorial Fund. 
  • Community resilience in practice. Donor Funded. 
  • Interbasin Water-Transfer Linkages in India: The Case of Sankh-South Koel-Subarnarekha link. Durham University Doctoral Fellowship. 
  • Catchment connections: New perspectives on the role of stakeholders in catchment-scale management of water resources. ESRC Funded. 
  • Exploring local and institutional conceptualisations of flood risk using interactive mapping. NERC IAPETUS funding. 
  • Risk governance and governmentality in experimental urban adaptation from Indonesian cities. Funded by Christopher Moyes Memorial Fund.