The Ph.D. degree program in natural resources and environmental management provides studies in the environment and natural resource through a holistic and interdisciplinary approach. Students’ programs and research will prepare them to pursue independent research aimed at solving the complex issues facing the world environment using a variety of tools and methods.

Ph.D. students in Natural Resources and Environmental Management (NREM) will be required to:

• Conduct original research;
• Synthesize and state the relevance of their research in a thesis; and
• Demonstrate a contribution to the theory and practice of natural resources and environmental management.

Prior to their admission into the Natural Resources Institute, students will be required to specify their area of research interest and name their advisor. However, students will not necessarily be required to develop a detailed Ph.D. proposal or select their advisory committee prior to entering the program. This process should allow students more leeway when initially planning their Ph.D. program. During this critical time, students will be able to undertake some courses and possibly gain further insights and develop creative concepts by participating in learned conferences and workshops. At the same time, students will be able to meet potential advisory committee members and gain a more thorough knowledge of their respective skills and abilities. Through these experiences and consultations with their advisors, students will be able to think about the ultimate direction and details of their research projects. Overall, this process will provide greater opportunity for Ph.D. students to interact with others and discuss their research projects as they are evolving.

Admission Requirements

To qualify for admission to the Ph.D. program, an applicant must meet the University of Manitoba Graduate Studies general regulations and must have:

1. A high academic standing in previous university work; 2. A Master’s degree in a related discipline, as determined by the Natural Resources Institute Selection Committee; and 3. An area of research interest, which may be supported by a Natural Resources Institute faculty member. Students are required to be accepted by an advisor prior to submitting an application to enter the program.

Applications will include letters of recommendation, including one from the student’s intended advisor, and a statement concerning work experience in natural resources and/or environmental fields indicating that the applicant has demonstrated suitability and preparedness for Ph.D. studies. A Selection Committee will assess all applications, applying a usual standard of a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.50 in the most recent 60 credit hours of course work, and evidence of scholarly ability (e.g. publications and other written works). It is critical to note that applicants will be assessed on an individual basis to ensure they are qualified to undertake the program that they have planned.

Course Requirements

All Ph.D. students will be required to complete a minimum of 12 and a maximum of 21 credit hours of course work at the 700/7000-level or above, beyond the Master’s degree (or its equivalent). A minimum of 6 credit hours of courses must be completed within the Natural Resources Institute and must include NRI 7310 Ph.D. Thesis Research Seminar.

Individual programs of study will vary from student to student depending on each student’s research interest and the recommendations of each student’s advisor and Ph.D. advisory committee. Students will be encouraged to use the pool of Natural Resources Institute required and elective courses as well as appropriate graduate courses available outside of the Natural Resources Institute in order to select the best set of courses to complement their programs.

Student academic progress will be reported annually to the Faculty of Graduate Studies. A minimum Grade Point Average of 3.0, with no grade below C+, must be maintained in order to continue in the program.

Language Reading Requirement

Required only in special circumstances determined at the time of admission.

Changes in Program of Study

Changes in program of study, including withdrawal from individual courses or changes of course category, are permitted only with the approval of the advisor and the Director of the Natural Resources Institute.

The Ph.D. Thesis

The Ph.D. thesis at the Natural Resources Institute is an independent written research document resulting from an interdisciplinary research project that involves theoretical analysis of a topic or issue, practical application of strategies to address a topic or issue, or a combination of these two concepts, in the areas of natural resources and environmental management. The thesis should show that the student has mastery of the specific field of natural resources and environmental management under investigation, and is fully conversant with the relevant literature. The thesis should also demonstrate that the candidate has made a contribution to knowledge in the field of interest. The thesis may entail cooperation with agencies in the community at large and with other faculties at the U of M.

In general, the overall goal of the thesis is to build or apply theory through disciplined and focused independent study. Therefore, the thesis should be based on scholarly study and research that encompasses both theoretical and empirical aspects in the natural resources and environmental management fields, as defined in the Mission Statement of the Natural Resources Institute.