Introduction

PhD studies in aquaculture produce researchers who are equipped to face the challenges of developing all facets of aquaculture, from a standpoint of sustainability and with a mastery of advanced multidisciplinary techniques. Society needs research professionals with a clear vision of the need for R+D+I in order for aquaculture to develop in a sustainable way.

The aquaculture sector is developing within a framework of strategic prioritisation. World demand for fishery products continues to grow at a rate that cannot be satisfied by extractive fishing, making aquaculture the best alternative for meeting this demand in the future. Aquaculture already accounts for around 50% of world fishery production, thus making an important contribution to food safety.

Furthermore, aquaculture can also serve other purposes, such as leisure activities (large aquariums, aquariology, sport fishing, etc.), obtaining raw materials for industrial use (pharmaceutical products, foods, fuel, etc.) or environmental protection (repopulation, biological purification, etc.). The diversity of species, farming systems, locations and purposes creates a need for knowledge from across many disciplines and to a high degree of specialisation.

Aquaculture continues to be a growth sector, one that is necessary to maintain fish supplies in the coming decades. In the nearest area of influence, one of Catalonia's strengths, as well as that of primary production, is its aquaculture-related industries (vaccines, quality control, etc.), in which it can exploit its technological potential. But Catalonia's main strength lies in the generation of knowledge and innovation.

In this respect, Catalan research work in aquaculture is organised within the XRAq network (Reference Network for Research and Development in Aquaculture). The XRAq is made up of the research groups from the two universities that launched it, together with the IRTA (Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology) and the CSIC (Spanish National Research Council). This wide and well-established network for research into various areas of aquaculture gives the PhD programme a great capacity for training researchers.

Improving competitiveness in aquaculture in Spain and in Catalonia requires specialised, multidisciplinary and innovative training.

Candidate profile

In general terms, to gain admission to the PhD programme in Aquaculture, applicants must hold the official Spanish bachelor's degree or equivalent, or a degree related to life sciences, health sciences, agricultural engineering or similar, and a master's degree in aquaculture or a similar qualification from a higher education institution of the EHEA for studies of the same duration as the master's degree.

The recommended entry profile is that of a student with research experience and in-depth knowledge of the basic concepts and tools in any of the aquaculture fields.

 

Professional opportunities

This PhD programme provides the following principal career options:

  • Research in R&D departments in the public or private sector in the areas of:
    • aquaculture production,
    • feed production for aquatic organisms,
    • pharmaceutical industry (medicines and vaccines for aquatic organisms),
    • quality control and processing of fishery products.
  • Creation of companies and consultancies related to aquaculture.
  • Management of installations for aquaculture production or aquariology.
  • Project execution, including international cooperation.
  • Training.
  • Administration: work related to different areas of aquaculture, such as animal health or management of resources and the environment.

Objectives and justification

Improving competitiveness in aquaculture in Spain and in Catalonia requires specialised, multidisciplinary and innovative training. This is the basic tenet of the PhD programme in Aquaculture, through which the university offers advanced training in aquaculture in order to help develop the sector.

This PhD programme offers training that can meet the needs for research and development of both the primary sector and associated services, thanks to the complementary nature of the research areas of both universities.

The purpose of the PhD programme in Aquaculture is to train up researchers in aquaculture who are able to conduct and lead research and innovation in research  departments in both the private sector (improvements in production of aquatic organisms, production of feeds, medicines and vaccines, etc.) and the public sector (national and international projects).

The programme aims to provide its students with the  tools they need to conduct research in Aquaculture as  they work on the doctoral theses they will eventually present and defend.

Coordinator

Francesc Padrós Bover

Administration

Pilar Lurbe
d.bave@uab.cat
Departmental Office of Animal Biology, Plant Biology and Ecology
Office C1/023 - Faculty of Biosciences

Interuniversity

Number of places available: 8
Fees: aprox. €540 per year View detail of the PhD's fees

Languages in which the thesis may be written:
Catalan, Spanish and English
Organising universities and institutions:
Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
Universitat de Barcelona

Associated departments or institutes:
Department of Animal Biology, Plant Biology and Ecology (UAB)
Department of Physiology and Immunology (UB)
Department of Cell Biology, Physiology and Immunology (UAB)
Department of Animal Biology (UB)
Department of Cell Biology (UB)
Department of Animal and Food Science (UAB)

Collaborating institutions:
Institut de Recerca i Tecnologia Agroalimentàries (IRTA)
Institut de Ciències del Mar (ICM-CSIC)
Health Sciences
Sciences

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