Dr Milena Buchs

Dr Milena Buchs


Milena joined the SRI in September 2016 as Associate Professor in Sustainability, Economics and Low-Carbon Transitions. With a background in sociology and political science, her current research focusses on the distribution and inequality of carbon emissions, currently especially of travel-related emissions; carbon reduction and wellbeing, and interventions to promote low carbon practices and practice change. Milena has led and collaborated on several major, interdisciplinary UK Research and Innovation grants on these topics.

Prior to joining the SRI, Milena was lecturing at the University of Southampton in Sociology and Social Policy (2005-16). She received her PhD in Political Sciences from the Humboldt University Berlin in 2007 and her under- and postgraduate taught training in Sociology, Political Science and Economics from the Free University Berlin in 2001. She also held visiting researcher positions at the DFG-funded Postgrowth Societies College, University of Jena; the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment, London School of Economics; and at the Centre of Comparative Welfare State Research, University of Stirling (with a EU Marie Curie fellowship during her PhD).


  • Deputy Director of Postgraduate Research
  • Member of the ESRC White Rose Doctoral Training Partnership Academic Quality Committee

Research interests

Current research projects

Milena is a Co-I in the Transport team of the UK Centre for Research into Energy Demand Solutions (CREDS), established in 2018, working on the distribution of travel emissions.

PI of the Marie SkÅ‚odowska-Curie project “ShaRe – The potential of Sharing Resources for mitigating carbon emissions and other environmental impacts” (2019-2023), MSC Individual Fellow: Dr Diana Ivanova

Previous research projects

Milena was PI of the ESRC Impact Acceleration Account project on "Low carbon behaviour change in organisations" which will test the effectiveness of Carbon Conversations and Carbon Literacy programmes for encouraging carbon reduction at work and at home, involving employees from eco-developer CITU and ITV (2018-2019). 

In the EPSRC Programme Grant Liveable Cities (2012-2017), Milena led a field experiment on a carbon calculator intervention for carbon reduction, and a project on the role of health status for household energy use.

In two further ESRC/EPSRC projects, the RCUK The role of community-based initiatives in energy saving and the ESRC Third Sector Research Centre Environment Stream, Milena led projects on the role of grassroots organisations in encouraging members of the public to take up low carbon behaviours.

Milena was also PI on the ESRC project "Who emits most" which examined the inequality of carbon emissions of UK households, and estimated implications for distributional effects of market-based climate mitigation policies. The dataset from that project is available from the UK Data Service

PhD supervision

I welcome applications for PhD research on any of the topics outlined above.

Current PhD Students

  • Ben Robra Organisations in a degrowth society
  • Aaisa Nisar The role of eco-housing developments in creating sustainable communities

Supervised to completion

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://environment.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD in Political Sciences, Humboldt University Berlin
  • MSc Sociology with Political Science and Economics, University of Berlin

Research groups and institutes

  • Sustainability Research Institute
  • Economics and Policy for Sustainability
  • Social and Political Dimensions of Sustainability
  • Energy and Climate Change Mitigation

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>
    <li><a href="//phd.leeds.ac.uk/project/354-air-travel-reduction---barriers-and-opportunities">Air travel reduction - barriers and opportunities</a></li> <li><a href="//phd.leeds.ac.uk/project/612-cultural-interventions-for-promoting-alternative-visions-of-wellbeing-in-a-zero-carbon-economy">Cultural interventions for promoting alternative visions of wellbeing in a zero carbon economy</a></li>