This project is is using pioneering conservation techniques in dune management, so we are able to offer some exciting research and conservation opportunities for students and researchers

On this page you can find out more about the work that our brilliant students, researchers and young people have been doing as part of the project, through blogs and videos that they have produced.

Scroll down to explore some of our current opportunities if you'd like to apply to get involved too.

Meet our 2021 Studland Bay Dynamic Dunescapes Placement Students

In this video, which they filmed and produced themselves during their summer placement.

Dynamic Dunescapes (DuneLIFE): Student Research Opportunities

We have a range of possible student research projects available with our teams in Lincolnshire, Dorset, Cornwall and North Devon, ranging from exploring the impact of different land management actions or mapping species distributions, to looking at the impact of Covid-19 on reserve visitors or evaluating the role of social media or signage on connecting communities with the project.

For the full list of opportunities and additional information about each, download this pdf document. To discuss any of the opportunities, send an email to or use the form at the bottom of this page.

Lincolnshire Research Opportunities

We have a range of research opportunities available with our Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust and Natural England teams. The titles and qualification level are listed below.

If you'd like more information about or to apply for any of these roles, please email Tish Cookson

  • A detailed survey of Bryum warneum distribution at Saltfleetby-Theddlethorpe NNR [BSc/MSc/Mres]
  • What are the impacts of Dunescapes management interventions on flora/fauna? (e.g. what species colonise the new dune ridge? Is there an increase in biodiversity after turf stripping? / colonisation after scrub removal? / regrowth of sea buckthorn after clematis removal?) [Any]
  • Where do visitors walk at Gibraltar Point and does this cause a depression in breeding bird density? [BSc/MSc/Mres]
  • Where and what do marsh moths do that makes them so scarce? [PhD]
  • History of expansion of sea buckthorn and other scrub within the dune system at Saltfleetby NNR [BSc/MSc/Mres]
  • General studies of coastal species distributions [Any]
  • Compare the volume / nutrient load of different grazing animals [BSc/MSc/Mres]
  • What is the most effective control of Crassula helmsii? [Any]
  • How can we reverse the decline in adder numbers? [Any]
  • A project to assess wing muscles of red-eyed damselflies

Lincolnshire Bursaries

  • Individual Bursary:  The bursary programme in Lincolnshire is available to support student projects which relate to Dynamic Dunescapes outcomes and outputs. Projects may be carried out as part of undergraduate / masters or PhD study, to develop research and/or practical skills or to gain field-based experience. Bursaries of up to £500 will be available for projects covering a range of subjects - social, economic, environmental, as well as film and media, to help students develop new skills and access employment routes in the environmental sector.
  • Group Bursary: Bursaries of up to £500 are available to support young people to act for nature conservation and develop their own creative or research-based project. The age cohort is primarily 16 – 25-year olds (although this can include up to 30-year olds following United Nations protocols). Funding will be awarded to projects relating most to Dynamic Dunescapes key messages or themes.

For more details and to apply, download the forms to the right of this page and email

Cornwall Research Opportunities and Bursaries

A variety of research projects have been identified and prioritised by our Cornwall team. The project ideas are aimed at increasing our understanding of species and habitats found in the dunes, so helping site managers to make better-informed decisions. We are also open to supporting self-generated project titles that fit into our aims and ambitions. Projects could be undertaken at either of our two sites (Penhale Dunes and The Towans) or both.

There are eight study bursaries (£250) each available for young people in Cornwall, to support student research projects. These projects may be carried out as part of undergraduate or Masters programmes of study.

To discuss research opportunities and/or bursaries in Cornwall, please contact

Wales Student Bursaries

We have easy to apply for funding (bursaries) of £150 -£500 to award to A-level, undergraduate and masters students (open to ages 18-30) to support the study, promotion and participation of our ground-breaking conservation work on Wales’ sand dune systems. Funding is available to 18-30yr olds in two rounds. Projects can be undertaken at Oxwich NNR, Penmaen/Three Cliffs Bay, Pembrey SSSI, Crymlyn Burrows, Baglan Burrows, Llyn Peninsula, and Anglesey. Download the information document to the right for further details.

How to apply:

Before submitting your application, speak to David Kilner by email or by phone 07398 182296 about your proposed project idea.

Deadlines: We have two rounds of funding. The deadline for round one is March 31st (for projects to be completed between April 2021 and December 2021), and the deadline for round to is May 31at (for projects to be completed between summer 2021 and summer 2022).

To find out more, you can attend an online Introduction To Student Bursaries in Wales session with David Kilner.

Click here to register for one of these events.

Contact us about student, research or bursary opportunities

If you've got an idea for a project or would like to get in touch with us about potential conservation or research opportunities, you can contact us using this form.

    More information

    Don’t forget you can also sign up for volunteering or citizen science opportunities at our dune sites. Visit our volunteering page to find out more about getting involved and visit our events page to explore some of our upcoming opportunities.