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Money laundering in construction projects


Key facts

Type of research degree
Application deadline
Ongoing deadline
Country eligibility
International (open to all nationalities, including the UK)
Mr Tristano Sainati and Dr Ilaria Zavoli
School of Civil Engineering, School of Law
<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Summary</h2>

Money laundering concerns transforming illicit profits into (apparently) lawful ones. Construction projects are susceptible to money launderings, and several judicial cases have disclosed why and how construction projects favour money laundering. For example, they are often speculative, involve large sums of money, and it is relatively easy to inflate their costs due to apparently poor delivery performance. Furthermore, the construction projects are organised in multi-layered contractual transactions and are intensive human activities; these characteristics make it possible to structure and disperse large sums of money into the economy through multiple people and organisations.<br /> <br /> There is also tacit knowledge about how construction projects can be suitable for money laundering. Money laundering can apply in simple transactions or complicated and multi-layered ones. Money laundering can apply at the micro level, e.g. small modifications in an apartment project; or can apply at macro levels involving criminal organisations orchestrating massive money laundering transactions involving several nominees and (indirectly) controlled companies.

<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Full description</h2>

<p>Despite the relevance of money laundering in construction projects, project management scholars have not investigated this topic extensively. The prospective PhD research will address this specific gap in knowledge and address research questions such as:</p> <ul> <li>Which money laundering mechanisms can be applied to construction projects?</li> <li>How do these mechanisms influence the budgeting, procurement and delivery of construction projects?</li> <li>Which remedies can limit, or prevent, money laundering in construction projects?</li> </ul> <p>The candidate can amend these questions to focus on those aspects that are deemed to be more relevant and practical provided the focus remains on money laundering applied to construction projects.</p>

<h2 class="heading">How to apply</h2>

<p>Formal applications for research degree study should be made online through the&nbsp;<a href="">University&#39;s website</a>. Please state clearly in the research information section&nbsp;that the research degree you wish to be considered for is &lsquo;PHD Civil Engineering:&nbsp; Money laundering in construction projects&rsquo; as well as <a href="">Dr Tristano Sainati</a>&nbsp;as your proposed lead supervisor and <a href="">Dr Ilaria Zavoli (School of Law)</a> as your co-supervisor.</p> <p>If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence that you meet the University&#39;s minimum English language requirements (below).</p> <p><em>As an international research-intensive university, we welcome students from all walks of life and from across the world. We foster an inclusive environment where all can flourish and prosper, and we are proud of our strong commitment to student education. Across all Faculties we are dedicated to diversifying our community and we welcome the unique contributions that individuals can bring, and particularly encourage applications from, but not limited to Black, Asian, people who belong to a minority ethnic community, people who identify as LGBT+ and people with disabilities. Applicants will always be selected based on merit and ability.</em></p> <p class="MsoNoSpacing">Applications will be considered on an ongoing basis. &nbsp;Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the supervisors for an informal discussion before making a formal application. &nbsp;We also advise that you apply at the earliest opportunity as the application and selection process may close early, should we receive a sufficient number of applications or that a suitable candidate is appointed.</p> <p>Please note that you must provide the following documents at the point you submit your application:</p> <ul> <li>Full Transcripts of all degree study or if in final year of study, full transcripts to date</li> <li>Personal Statement outlining your interest in the project</li> <li>CV</li> <li>Funding information including any alternative sources of funding that you are applying for or if you are able to pay your own fees and maintenance</li> </ul>

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">Entry requirements</h2>

Applicants to research degree programmes should normally have at least a first class or an upper second class British Bachelors Honours degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate discipline. The criteria for entry for some research degrees may be higher, for example, several faculties, also require a Masters degree. Applicants are advised to check with the relevant School prior to making an application. Applicants who are uncertain about the requirements for a particular research degree are advised to contact the School or Graduate School prior to making an application.

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">English language requirements</h2>

The minimum English language entry requirement for research postgraduate research study is an IELTS of 6.0 overall with at least 5.5 in each component (reading, writing, listening and speaking) or equivalent. The test must be dated within two years of the start date of the course in order to be valid. Some schools and faculties have a higher requirement.

<h2 class="heading">Funding on offer</h2>

<p style="margin-bottom:12px"><strong>Self-Funded or externally sponsored students are welcome to apply.</strong></p> <p><strong>UK</strong>&nbsp;&ndash;&nbsp;The&nbsp;<a href="">Leeds Doctoral Scholarships</a> and <a href="">Leeds Opportunity Research Scholarship</a> are available to UK applicants. <a href="">Alumni Bursary</a> is available to graduates of the University of Leeds.</p> <p><strong>Non-UK</strong> &ndash;The&nbsp;<a href="">China Scholarship Council - University of Leeds Scholarship</a>&nbsp;is available to nationals of China. The&nbsp;<a href="">Leeds Marshall Scholarship</a>&nbsp;is available to support US citizens. <a href="">Alumni Bursary</a> is available to graduates of the University of Leeds.</p> <p><strong>Important:</strong>&nbsp; Any costs associated with your arrival at the University of Leeds to start your PhD including flights, immigration health surcharge/medical insurance and Visa costs are <strong>not</strong> covered under this studentship.</p> <p>Please refer to the <a href="">UKCISA</a> website for information regarding Fee Status for Non-UK Nationals.</p>

<h2 class="heading">Contact details</h2>

<p>For further information regarding your application, please contact Doctoral College Admissions by email:&nbsp;<a href="">p</a><a href=""></a></p> <p>For further information regarding the project, please contact Dr Tristano Sainati by email:&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href=""></a></p>

<h3 class="heading heading--sm">Linked research areas</h3>