Climate Scholars


Priestley Climate Scholars provides a platform of engagement for postgraduate students with common interests surrounding climate change.

Understanding and responding to climate change is one of the biggest challenges facing us today. Resolving this challenge requires bringing together thinkers from traditionally isolated disciplinary backgrounds that represent different perspectives on climate. Across University of Leeds campus  many postgraduate students study topics relating to climate, yet many students find themselves only engaging with the research community within their own discipline.

As a postgraduate student-focused group of the Priestley International Centre for Climate, Priestley Climate Scholars provides a platform for engagement across disciplinary backgrounds by offering opportunities for interaction on areas of climate research to which students otherwise may not be exposed.


  • Student focused
  •  Academic staff board will offer guidance and support to students as they engage in climate research
  • Student members will be provided with opportunities for leadership development and cross-disciplinary collaboration on new projects relating to climate change
  • Support will be provided by the world-leading Priestley International Centre for Climate
  • Activity programme offered by the Priestley Society


The group will include two cohorts of around seven postgraduate students each that start on a rolling yearly basis. Staggering cohort start dates ensures continuity in membership. Generally, students in their first or second year of their PhD are invited to apply.

The first cohort of postgraduate members was appointed in January 2108.

Academic Staff Board

The academic staff board is comprised of 10-15 members whose research relates to climate from University of Leeds’s Priestley International Centre for Climate.

Events and Activities

Students will meet monthly to share research and discuss emerging areas relating to climate. The format will include a short (~20 minute) informal presentation by a student member followed by discussion over lunch.

The student group will have additional opportunities each month to meet with an Academic Staff Board member, who will introduce their work and invite discussion.

An annual endowed dinner will welcome new student and Academic Staff Board members. A speaker invited by the students will give a keynote address.


Applications to join the 2019 cohort of Climate Scholars are now closed.

Membership to Priestley Climate Scholars is competitive. The group includes leading thinkers on climate-related research from across the University of Leeds community.

Applicants must submit a self-nomination package that includes: (1) a statement of research and description of how it relates to climate ( no more than 250 words) and (2) a description of how they envision their contribution to the group, including evidence of extra-curricular activities or previous experiences that demonstrate their leadership and initiative (250 words). You may also attach a CV.

Student members will be selected by the Academic Staff Board based on their academic contribution, their envisioned contribution to the group, leadership potential and disciplinary fit to ensure a membership group that represents a variety of disciplinary backgrounds.

Membership lasts two years.

Attach your application documents to a covering email headed “Priestley Climate Scholars” and send to

For further information, contact Dr Sarah Batterman or Kath Tattersall