Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Trinity Menu Trinity Search

Four-year Doctoral Award

A Visual History of Earth System Models from 1972 to Present

Deadline: 4pm on Friday 30 April 2021

Principal Investigator: Dr Timothy Stott

Applicants are sought for a fully-funded four-year Provost’s PhD Project Award to begin at Trinity College Dublin in either September 2021 or March 2022 on an aspect of the research project A Visual History of Earth System Models from 1972 to Present led by Dr Timothy Stott (Trinity College Dublin).

This award provides a unique opportunity for a doctoral student to engage in frontier research in visual culture within the environmental humanities research community at Trinity. The successful applicant will be based in the School of History of Art and Architecture and enrolled in the Structured PhD Programme.

The award comprises the student’s full PhD tuition fees (EU or non-EU) and an annual stipend of €16,000. Trinity’s Provost’s PhD Project Awards are generously funded through alumni donations and Trinity's Commercial Revenue Unit. Potential applicants are invited to email the Principal Investigator, Dr Timothy Stott (, to consult on their research proposal.

Applications for the award must include a personal statement with a research proposal (max. 5 pages), a curriculum vitae with educational history, transcripts of degree results, and two academic references. Prospective students will need to send these documents to Eilís Dunne at by the deadline of 4pm on Friday 30 April 2021. The successful candidate will then make a formal application to TCD via the portal and be issued with a formal offer in the same manner as other incoming PhD students.

Applications will not be considered complete until referees have submitted their references. Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application by the end of May. Unsuccessful candidates will be considered for other available funding. If the successful candidate does not have English as a first language, s/he will also be required to submit evidence of English language competence at this stage.

Trinity College Dublin is committed to policies, procedures and practices which do not discriminate on grounds such as gender, civil status, family status, age, disability, race, religious belief, sexual orientation, or membership of the travelling community. On that basis we encourage and welcome talented people from all backgrounds to join our staff and student body. Trinity’s Diversity Statement can be viewed in full at

We are looking for applicants with the following qualifications:


  • • A first-class (or equivalent) undergraduate degree in History of Art/History of Science.
  • • Excellent communicative competence in English.
  • • Excellent research and organisational skills.
  • Desirable:

  • • A Master’s degree (completed or in progress) in Visual Culture of Science.
  • • Demonstrable experience of using archives and familiarity with oral history approaches.
  • • Willingness to contribute to the activities of the Trinity Centre for Environmental Humanities.
  • Further enquiries: Dr Timothy Stott,
  • Further Project Information

    A Visual History of Earth System Models from 1972 to present will study ESM visualisations, from the world models of the early 1970s to the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP) between 1987 and 2015 and the Coupled Model Intercomparison Projects (CMIP), begun in 1995.

    The project combines the following aims:

  • a. To use the analytical tools of art history and visual culture to study the information design of ESMs over the past sixty years.
  • b. To study the epistemic, ontological, and political agency of ESM visualisations.
  • c. To historicise ESM visualisations in correspondence with changes in computing and design technologies, climate awareness, knowledge of complex adaptive systems, and institutions for scientific collaboration and earth system governance.
  • The PhD research will be a case study of the visual culture of Met Eireann since its fiftieth anniversary in 1987 and the establishment of the IGBP National Committee at the RIA the following year, especially in its contribution to ESS and climate modelling. The PhD researcher will also develop an analytical framework for ESMs in collaboration with the PI.