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The University of Southampton
Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute


How can we help?

SMMI brings together academic experts at the University of Southampton with business of all sizes, government at all levels and many other organisations to tackle key marine and maritime challenges. The Institute can help you to develop your research, teaching and impact. We have annual PhD studentships available, organise research development meetings (sandpits), help develop new courses and promote research outcomes through our worldwide network of marine and maritime partners.

If you’re not (yet!) working at the University of Southampton but would like to develop links to our academics we’d be happy to help you find the right connections. Please get in touch, email -



SMMI Sandpit Meetings

Do you have a research area that you would like to explore within the marine and maritime areas? Would it be helpful to share your ideas with others to create a cross-disciplinary proposal? If so then SMMI can help.

Supporting the development of cross-disciplinary research proposals and projects is a key function for SMMI. Bringing people together who may not normally meet is part of that process. To facilitate such interactions SMMI will help to organise a sandpit meeting for you.

These meetings need to be cross-disciplinary and can include external people. They should be focused on the development of a research proposal. Funds are available to cover refreshments, other necessary logistics and to provide administrative support.

Applications will be processed on a fortnightly basis.

Please complete the simple application form below and submit to

Useful Downloads

SMMI Key Themes

SMMI organises its marine and maritime activities into four key themes. Each theme has at least one academic theme leader. The themes are reviewed regularly so you can propose a new theme. If you are interested in joining one or more of the themes or would like to propose a new theme please tell us about your specific areas of interest.

Trade & Transport

Trade & Transport

Trade and transport is transforming the safety of crew and passengers, and the goods ships transport.

Technology for managing resources

Energy & Resources

From understanding of the basic sciences influencing the search for energy and seabed resources, to the technology for managing and extracting them and the legal instruments for exploiting such resources.

Climate & Environment

Climate & Environment

Our expertise covers the basic sciences explaining the behaviour of the environment, and developing the newest technologies for managing resources, to the legal instruments defining the use of the maritime and ocean space.

Society & Government

Society & Government

Our expertise includes issues relating to governance and planning in coastal regions, technological innovations, tourism and leisure activities, to the historical evolution of societies in port cities.

Why engage with smmi

“High quality research requires multiple perspectives that arise from interdisciplinary engagement. SMMI provides that platform. We arrange interdisciplinary sandpits to create new ideas and support application processes to bring them to fruition.”

Find out more


SMMI can help you to develop your research through initiatives such as sandpit meetings. These are funded group discussions between experts from different disciplines leading to research proposals. Contact us for more information.



SMMI can help you the develop courses bringing together academic disciplines from different areas. We can organise discussion groups to explore new opportunities, for example linking engineering with business. Contact us for more information.



We can help you to develop the profile of your work to generate additional impact. Contact us to discuss...

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