PhD in Conservation: Hunting, Consumption and Trade of Animals in the Tropics

In many tropical counties, wildlife is hunted for ‘wild meat’, supporting the diets, customs, and livelihoods of millions of people. However, unsustainable hunting is one of the most urgent threats to wildlife and ecosystems worldwide and has serious ramifications for people whose subsistence and income are tied to wild meat. Furthermore, the demand for wild meat in urban areas contributes to the unsustainable hunting of wildlife in rural areas, and remains a significant challenge to biodiversity conservation. The candidate will join a research group with expertise on the hunting, consumption, and trade in wildlife (hereafter referred to collectively as ‘wildlife use’), and will have the opportunity to collaborate on the group’s new research programme aimed at understanding wildlife use in urban areas.

Focussing on West and Central Africa (Cameroon and/or Guinea), the candidate will design studies and employ advanced statistical methods to tackle key questions surrounding 1) identifying the factors that shape wildlife use in urban areas, 2) identifying rigorous methods to monitor wildlife use, and 3) investigate the health implications of wildlife use. The candidate will work broadly on all species used for wild meat, but will also address specific questions on African pangolins.

There is flexibility within the PhD for the candidate to conduct fieldwork in West and/or Central Africa, and work across disciplines by harnessing methods from anthropology, economics, social sciences, or environmental psychology. This research has strong applied relevance, strengthening the evidence base needed to improve wildlife management across the tropics.

We are looking for an enthusiastic self-motivated candidate with a strong interest in wildlife use as well as the below criteria.

  • A first degree and a Master’s (at least Merit) or substantial professional experience in a relevant field is required.
  • French language skills would be beneficial.
  • Experience with field work in the tropics would be beneficial.
  • Experience analysing complex data using R would be beneficial and will be keen to develop their analytical skills.

This research group actively encourages and supports diversity of all kinds, and would therefore encourage applicants to apply from diverse backgrounds.

Candidates should apply by 2nd January 2023 23:59 (UK time) using the online application form, indicating the project above for which they wish to be considered.

For informal enquiries please contact Dr Daniel Ingram at

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