Science for Humanitarian Emergencies and Resilience (SHEAR) is a £19 million, five-year (2016-2021) international research programme jointly funded by the UK's Department for International Development (DFID) and the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC). The overall SHEAR programme focuses on four thematic areas: disaster risk assessment (mapping and analyses), sub-seasonal to seasonal forecasting, disaster risk monitoring, and the integration of these into practical decision making. The programme is targeting lower to middle income countries across sub-Saharan Africa and south Asia. SHEAR currently funds via their first call 4 Consortium Grants (Table 1), each of which has a budget of approximately £2M and began in September to December 2016 for a four-year duration. 

Current SHEAR funded projects
AcronymTitleLead PI and institute
 Landslide EVO Citizen science for landslide risk reduction and disaster resilience building in mountain regions Dr Wouter Buytaert, Imperial College London
 LANDSLIP Landslide multi-hazard risk assessment, Preparedness and early warning in South Asia: integrating meteorology, landscape and society Prof Bruce D Malamud, King’s College London / Dr Helen Reeves, BGS
 FATHUM Forecasts for AnTicipatory HUManitarian action Dr Elisabeth Stephens, University of Reading
 ForPac Towards Forecast-based Preparedness Action: Probabilistic forecast information for defensible preparedness decision-making and action Prof Martin Todd, University of Sussex
Table 1 - Current SHEAR funded projects
Summary of the table's contents

The SHEAR Studentship Cohort (SSC) consists of 13 students, six from the UK and seven from overseas. The cohort is led by Imperial College London with students enrolled here and at four partner Universities, King’s College London, University of Birmingham, University of Sussex and University of Reading. The SSC aims to provide an optimal training environment to support, complement and integrate further the current SHEAR-funded projects, with a particular focus on providing the students with excellent opportunities to gain transferrable skills, to conduct original and scientifically excellent research, and to contribute to impact creation beyond the existing SHEAR projects.

Scientific coordination of the SSC is in the hands of a Steering Committee that includes members with extensive PhD management experience. In particular, we have created a strong link with the NERC DTP on Science and Solutions for a Changing Planet (SSCP) coordinated by the Grantham Institute on Climate Change and the Environment of Imperial College London. The SSC Director Wouter Buytaert is an associate of the Grantham Institute and has a long-standing collaborative relationship with the institute. Additionally, the Director of the SSCP DTP, Prof Joanna Haigh, is part of our Steering Committee.

In addition to basic skills and training for science, which will take place within each university, we have assembled a bespoke training programme that consists of two sets of activities:

- Compulsory activities. These activities focus on interaction between the students, fostering interdisciplinary approaches, and training on SHEAR specific skills including impact creation  

- Complementary training opportunities and social activities. A wide range of training opportunities available at each of the SHEAR institutes will allow the SSC students to build a bespoke training portfolio tailored to their academic background, training needs, and ambitions and opportunities for impact creation. As many of these activities are linked to existing DTPs and CDTs in the SHEAR institutes, creating further opportunities for the students to interact with the wider UK PhD community.

Lastly, we have set up a framework to support overseas placements with a strong link to our knowledge brokering programme led by Practical Action UK and Red Cross Climate Centre.

For further information on the SSC, please see our webpage or contact the SSC Project Manager.