Laura McGinty

‌Laura N. McGinty - l.mcginty2@ncl.ac.uk

 

PhD Title:

Evaluation and Funding Green Infrastructure in Urban Areas

 

PhD Project Details:

Green Infrastructure (GI) has grown in prominence in research and practice over the past fifteen or so years.  Its ability to provide effective land use in an increasingly compacted urban landscape is invaluable to solving problems that are increasingly commonplace, due partly to that changing demand and partly due to our changing climate.

 

The benefits of green infrastructure are multitude (Benedict & McMahon, 2006) and include storm-water management, regulating urban heat and improving air quality, and social and well-being outcomes.  Much of the literature focuses on the multi-functionality and co-benefits of GI, and there are case studies of very successful uses.  But there remains a lack of consistency in the tools and methods used in practice for valuing these benefits and co-benefits.

 

In the current economic climate, finance can be difficult to access, and incorporating aspects of GI into development plans can be difficult to justify and easy to lose to cost cutting.  More recent research has aimed to investigate finance and funding options (Roelich, 2015) and to help improve the case for GI investment through better techniques for valuing the benefits (iBUILD, 2015), and to explore the impacts at different scales (Demuzere et al., 2014).

 

This PhD will explore interdependencies associated with GI in an urban context, methods for valuing GI and how new or existing business models need to emerge to fund and finance GI.

 

References:

Benedict, M.A., McMahon, E. & Conservation Fund (Arlington Va.) (2006) ‘Green Infrastructure: Linking Landscapes and Communities’, Washington, DC: Island Press.

 

Demuzere, M., Orru, K., Heidrich, O., Olazabal, E., Geneletti, D., Orru, H., Bhave, A.G., Mittal, N., Feliu, E. & Faehnle, M. (2014) 'Mitigating and Adapting to Climate Change: Multi-Functional and Multi-Scale Assessment of Green Urban Infrastructure', Journal of Environmental Management, 146, pp. 107-115.

 

iBUILD (2015) 'Are you being served? Alternative infrastructure business models to improve economic growth and well-being', iBUILD manifesto and mid-term report.

 

Roelich, K. (2015) Financing Infrastructure and Built Environment Adaptation to Climate Change.

 

Supervisors:

Professor Richard Dawson

Dr Claire Walsh

 

Sponsor:

EPSRC

 

Biography:

Laura attended Sheffield Hallam University from 2005 to 2009, achieving a First Class Honours degree in Human Geography and an MSc in Sustainable Communities and Environments.

Following this she worked for over five years in the third sector, providing monitoring and evaluation support for the sustainability charity Sustrans and statistical analysis and evaluation support for the RNLI.  Laura commenced her PhD in October 2015.