PhD positions

Every year, new PhD positions open, among which there are two types:

  1. Regular positions: PhD students receive a state-guaranteed scholarship. The scholarship can be connected to partial employment with projects of pure and applied research.
  2. STARS positions: The aim of the STARS program is to provide excellent education and an adequate income to PhD students of the Faculty. PhD students receive a state-guaranteed scholarship, and they are also granted the STARS-scholarship. 

For the year 2019/2020, the following positions were offered (please note that prospective students are always welcome to propose and discuss with supervisor(s) their own topics) and we will announce new positions (for the academic year 2020/2021) during autumn 2019. 

An analysis of the geographic variation in cancer incidence and its social determinants

Cancer is one of the leading diseases worldwide. The magnitude of cancer incidence varies by country or geographical area. The research project will focus on the analysis of trends in cancer incidence from a regional perspective. In addition to spatial variation in the trends in cancer incidence, socioeconomic, lifestyle and environmental risk factors of these trends will be investigated.

Daily mobility and commuting within the Prague metropolitan region

The project is based on the main ideas of time-space geography, daily paths, rhythms, and commuting within the urban environment. As an alternative to traditional commuting data from population censuses, mobile phone data is employed together with questionnaires and qualitative methods of daily mobility pattern investigation. For the project, the mobile phone operator´s data is prepared.

The development and transformation of the Russian automotive industry

With more than 1.5 million vehicles made in 2017, Russia continues to rank among the twenty largest vehicle producers in the world. The Russian automotive industry has experienced a transformation from state-owned and domestically controlled to a market-driven and increasingly foreign-controlled industry over the past three decades. The goal of this research project is to analyse this transformation. It will combine quantitative and qualitative research methodologies.

Examining Czech population structure through surnames

Geographical differences in surname structure capture a great deal of ethno-cultural variation. Surnames also have demonstrable utility as proxies for genetic information. This PhD project will utilize information on the spatial distribution of surnames in Czechia to examine both the large-scale patterns and local specifics of Czech population structure. 

Gender gap in health from international perspective

In developed countries females outlive males at all ages. Female even report worse health than males of the same age. This phenomenon is known as male-female-health-survival paradox. The research project will focus on analysis to what extent gender differences in longevity can be attributed to biological, demographical, geographical, environmental, social and behavioural factors.

Identification and interrelationships of health disparities: a geospatial analysis

The identification and understanding of health disparities is a research topic of growing importance. Health problems facing the world today exist in a geographic context and any analysis requires a comprehensive understanding of spatial aspects. Geographical Information System (GIS) provides an excellent tool for identification such disparities including mapping at the small area level and spatial/spatiotemporal analysis of health outcomes of sociodemographic subgroups. 

The impact of border processes on socioeconomic development in the border regions in Central Europe (STARS position)

The process of economic and political integration in Europe implied fundamental changes in the nature of the EU’s internal and external borders. The project aims to study the changing nature of state borders and its impact on regional development and the socioeconomic performance of border regions. The main research questions are: What are the effects of border processes on socioeconomic development in different border regions? What are the determinants of these potentially heterogeneous effects? What are the underlying mechanisms behind the socioeconomic changes in the border regions, and what role do the key regional actors play?

Impacts of tourism on the most exposed destinations in Czechia

The PhD dissertation project will be based on research concerning the impacts of tourism (sociocultural above all) on the most exposed tourist destinations related to effects of overtourism, followed by tourist- and tourism-phobic perceptions. The mechanisms and tools for the consolidation of tourist flows and the prediction of tourism’s negative aspects based on analyses of the broadly understood tourism environment (a qualitative and quantitative survey of stakeholders) will be identified.

Spaces of Social Exclusion: Spatial Inequality, Social Injustice and Urban Change (STARS position)

The project investigates the development and nature of socio-spatial exclusion. Fueled by the pursuit of neoliberal practices in decision-making, new socio-spatial formations, such as gated communities and gentrified neighborhoods, concentrations of immigrants and socially excluded localities signaled the fast development of socio-spatial inequality.

Student (mis)conceptions when working with maps

Maps are usually designated as an essential tool for geographic communication. It is, therefore, necessary to teach students how to work with maps and to understand their basic concepts in geography lessons at secondary school level. Within this context, we can talk about student conceptions related to map work or student misconceptions in the case of any inadequate understanding which can be caused by poorly developed map skills. The main goal of the research should be to identify any (mis)conceptions among secondary students when interpreting different types of maps (using a conceptual test, interviews, and eye-tracking technology) and to describe why they occur.

Student strategies for solving tasks with maps

The research project should focus on student map use strategies—the issue hasn’t been sufficiently investigated yet (not only in Czechia). Considering the importance of individual types of map skills, the project should aim to identify and characterise different secondary school students’ strategies when reading, analysing and/or interpreting maps (thematic, topographic, etc.). Furthermore, the research should aim to investigate which factors (gender, cognitive and learning styles, previous experience with a presented map, etc.) influence the choice of strategy when solving tasks with maps. 

Sustainability of sanitation behaviour change in low- and middle-income countries (STARS position)

An estimated 2.4 billion people globally still lack access to an improved sanitation facility. A sanitation target was included but not achieved in the MDGs, and the subsequent SDGs include an ambitious target to eliminate open defecation worldwide and ensure the entire world population has access to adequate sanitation by 2030. This project will focus specifically on factors and processes underlying the sustainability of sanitation behaviour change in low- and middle-income countries. It will adopt a contextually-sensitive perspective to investigate sanitation dynamics within a broader WASH (Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene) nexus.

Trends in second home tourism market—Geographical approach

The PhD dissertation project will be based on the research of current trends in second home tourism. The commercialisation and internationalisation seem to be the crucial processes in development of second home tourism. Practices from leading European and non-European countries will be discussed followed by the specifics of Czechia as an example of a transition and post-transition society; methods of second home tourism research; the development of the second home tourism market, foreign investors and clients as well Czechs using second homes abroad; regional differentiation; the relationship to de-urbanisation and amenity migration processes and heterolocal society; and case studies from Czechia (Czech communities abroad).

Urban agriculture: a potential tool for local and global food security, economic, social and environmental resilience, community health and a healthy lifestyle

Urban agriculture defined as cultivation and consumption of food in the space of a city and its surroundings has an obvious potential for the improvement of both individual and community health, increasing local and global food security, enhancing the economy of a city, mitigation of human activity impact on the environment, and strengthening a sense of community and identity. However, there is not enough quantitative evidence or qualitative case studies which would support these statements. There are studies on a high proportion of urban agriculture production in the cities of both the Global North and South (Dar es Salaam, Shanghai, Peking, Cleveland, Chicago, Milwaukee…) which are more than positive; nevertheless, assumptions about the benefits of urban agriculture need stronger scientific support.