Showcasing the research and interests of Dr Gillian Harrison


Gillian Harrison grew up in Sunderland and Durham, leaving in 1999 to attend the University of Bradford. After graduating in 2003 with an undergraduate Masters in Chemistry with Forensic and Pharmaceutical Science, Gillian joined Yorkshire Water in the Environment Team. Over the next four years she helped implement the company's ISO 14001 Environmental Management System, carrying out site audits and environmental awareness training, and specialised in green communication and carbon accounting. From here, Gillian moved into Project Co-ordination and Business Reporting for the next two years before taking advantage of redundancy in 2009 to return to academia and research the area of climate change and low carbon technologies, a passion that evolved  from witnessing the growth of its importance from a both a business and personal viewpoint over the preceding years.

Gillian undertook an integrated Masters and PhD in Low Carbon Technologies at the Energy Research Institute of the University of Leeds School of Engineering. In her thesis, she combined ethical theory, policy appraisal, vehicle technologies and system dynamics modelling,  in order to recommend socially just and ethically robust policies for a sustainable low carbon fleet of private passenger vehicles by 2050. Following her PhD, Gillian worked as a Research Fellow for the European Commission, Joint Research Centre, Directorate for Energy, Transport and Climate, responsible for the Powertrain Technology Transition Market Agent Model. From April 2017 she has worked at the University of Leeds, Institute for Transport Studies on various projects including analysis of data from a mobile phone travel app for policy appraisal (HABITS/EMPOWER), development of a system dynamics model of the uptake and impact of travel apps (STS), and evaluating connecting and automated driving pilot schemes (AUTOPILOT) .

Gillian is keen to engage with researchers, practitioners and public alike to explore collaborative opportunities for furthering her research in the areas of:

  • Sustainable mobility
    • Technology transition within transport and the impact on wider energy systems
    • Powertrain transitions (particularly electro-mobility)  within the EU/UK light duty fleet
    • The current and future role of automobility in society
    • Climate change and low carbon technologies
    • Promoting and adopting public and active transport
    • Automated and connected vehicles
  • Ethics of climate change, energy, and transport
    • Social justice and equity in transport
    • Ethics and philosophy of models (and similar tools)
    • Incorporation of ethical/equity indicators and non-empirical concepts within models (and similar tools) for policy appraisal
  • System dynamics modelling
  • Policy appraisal and decision making
  • Data processing and analysis