The School of Geography and the Environment is part of the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Science and Engineering for Arts, Heritage and Archaeology (SEAHA). We have an exciting four-year doctoral scholarship available investigating: Preservation of geological collections in museums. Students will transfer to Oxford after the first MRes year at UCL. Excellent applicants with any good chemistry, engineering, mineralogy, geochemistry or geosciences undergraduate qualifications are welcome to apply. Further details and instructions on how to apply are available on the SEAHA website.

Preservation of geological collections in museums

Mineral specimens, despite their apparent stability, are prone to deterioration in museum environments. Currently available methodologies are not suitable for routine collection monitoring, as results are not necessarily replicable, and, in the absence of guidance on suitable storage conditions, triggers for, and the suitability of, conservation actions are difficult to determine. We need a more robust approach to the delivery of preventative conservation of geological collections. This studentship, based at the University of Oxford and in partnership with Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales and BSRIA Ltd, addresses these issues. The student will define what kind of material change in minerals constitutes damage; develop a protocol for routine monitoring of museum geological collections for potential damage; establish optimum environmental and minimum air quality standards for different types of minerals; and test rigorously the suitability of conservation treatments that are presently available.

  • Academic supervisor - Professor Heather Viles, University of Oxford
  • Heritage supervisors - Dr Christian Baars and Dr Jana Horák, Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
  • Industrial supervisor - Ian Wallis, BSRIA Ltd

Application deadline: midday, Friday 12th January 2018.
Interviews most likely to be held on Thursday, 25 January 2018.

Full information about the project and how to apply can be found on the SEAHA website.

Before applying, please check the eligibility criteria. For more information please contact Professor Heather Viles ().