Skip to content

NTU researchers to work with government policymakers on climate change and net zero

Two Nottingham Trent University researchers have joined government departments to work with policymakers on addressing some of the major challenges facing the UK.

Rowena Hill and Jacqueline Kirk
Professor Rowena Hill and Associate Professor Jacqueline Kirk (L to R)

The 18-month, part-time roles are part of the Economic and Social Research Council’s (ESRC) pilot policy fellowship programme, co-funded with the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), both part of UK Research and Innovation.

Rowena Hill, Professor of Disasters and Emergencies at NTU’s School of Social Sciences, will work with the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities on behavioural approaches to climate change.

Professor Hill will run climate change focussed projects to place research and evidence at the heart of policy development. These will be followed by a knowledge exchange phase to ensure that her work continues after the secondment.

Commenting on her new role, Professor Hill said: “Not only do we get to see policy development in real time and ensure that research and evidence is at the heart of that, but we also get to see the machinery of government and the way that government policy activity is undertaken. It's fascinating.”

Dr Jacqueline Kirk, Associate Professor in Sustainable Business at Nottingham Business School, will join the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) to advise on how behavioural science approaches could be applied to net zero.

Dr Kirk will work across BEIS teams covering business engagement and green choices to develop cross cutting research that will directly inform the department’s policy development whilst also supporting external stakeholders in their delivery of net zero.

Dr Kirk said: “The ESRC fellowships are a fantastic opportunity to deliver direct impact into policy development. Not only will the fellowship deliver this impact within its duration; the knowledge, skills and networks gained creates an opportunity to continue to create long lasting connections between academia and government that ensures impact continues into the future.”

Professor Alison Park, Interim Executive Chair of ESRC, added: “The policy fellowships are an important example of how ESRC is supporting researchers and government to develop long-term relationships, helping to embed research, evidence and expertise within government decision making.

“Given our commitment to strengthening relationships between researchers and policymakers, we are particularly encouraged by the high level of engagement with this scheme across the social science research community and central and devolved governments.”

  • Notes for editors

    About Nottingham Trent University

    Nottingham Trent University (NTU) received the Queens Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education in 2021 for cultural heritage science research. It is the second time that NTU has been bestowed the honour of receiving a Queen’s Anniversary Prize for its research, the first being in 2015 for leading-edge research on the safety and security of global citizens.

    The Research Excellence Framework (2021) classed 83% of NTU’s research activity as either world-leading or internationally excellent. 86% of NTU’s research impact was assessed to be either world-leading or internationally excellent.

    NTU was awarded Outstanding Support for Students 2020 (Times Higher Education Awards). It was the University of the Year 2019 (Guardian University Awards, UK Social Mobility Awards), Modern University of the Year 2018 (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide) and University of the Year 2017 (Times Higher Education Awards).

    NTU is the 5th largest UK institution by student numbers, with over 33,000 students and more than 4,000 staff located across five campuses. It has an international student population of 4,000 and an NTU community representing around 160 countries.

    In the past 15 years, NTU has invested £450 million in tools, technology and facilities.

    NTU is in the UK’s top 10 for number of applications and ranked first for accepted offers (2019 UCAS UG acceptance data) It is also among the UK’s top five recruiters of students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

    75% of NTU students go on to graduate-level employment or graduate-entry education / training within fifteen months of graduating (Guardian University Guide 2021).

    NTU is 4th globally (and 3rd in the UK) for sustainability in the 2021 UI Green Metric University World Rankings (out of more than 900 participating universities).

NTU researchers to work with government policymakers on climate change and net zero

Published on 26 July 2022
  • Category: Press office; Research; Nottingham Business School; School of Social Sciences

Still need help?

+44 (0)115 941 8418