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Research Experience Placement: Hollie Black

Hollie Black

Hollie is a student from the University of Strathclyde who worked with Dr Gary Watmough and his Geospatial Livelihoods group on a project entitled Supporting the development of a Children’s vulnerability to climate change index in Uganda

What are you studying?

A Masters in Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Strathclyde

Tell us a bit about the project you have been working on this summer?

I have been working on creating a subnational Children’s Vulnerability to Climate Change Index for both Uganda and Tanzania. Currently the Children’s climate risk index (CCRI) is being created on a national level and we are investigating if there should be further funding to create the index on a subnational level as countries will have different scores across the districts within the country. However, the current CCRI only gives one singular vulnerability score for each country. This is also not as useful as a subnational index for policy makers as the subnational index will allow governments to look within their own country and determine which areas need help and for which sector e.g. education.

What new skills have you learned while doing this internship?

I have learned how to use arcMap which is a GIS software, have learned about using STAN in R as a multilevel modelling code type, learned how to do principle component analysis in SPSS and mostly learned about climate change and the social economic vulnerability it causes especially to children.

How have you found working with your research team here at the University of Edinburgh?

Working with my research team has been great everyone is very supportive and helpful. I think it is very important that you feel comfortable asking questions to your supervisor and I definitely did which made the experience more enjoyable.

What has been the highlight of the internship for you?

The highlight for myself has been being able to present my index to the creators of the Children’s Climate Risk Index which is an team containing academics from the University of Southampton, the University of Leeds, the University of Edinburgh and UNICEF.

How has doing this internship changed your plans or thoughts about your future career.

This internship has pushed me towards applying for a PhD within geoscience as I found the project very interesting and enjoyed the research I carried out.