ESRC PhD Studentships in Social Sciences

The School is pleased to offer a number of research degree studentships as part of the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) White Rose Social Sciences Doctoral Training Partnership (WRDTP).

The WRDTP is one of 14 Doctoral Training Partnerships to be accredited by the ESRC in recognition of its strengths in postgraduate research training and development. These highly prestigious studentships and will be awarded on academic merit, allowing successful applicants to commence their studies in October 2019.

Studentship applications are invited within the following thematic pathway areas:

  • Cities, Environment, and Liveability
  • Security, Conflict, and Justice
  • Education, Childhood, and Youth
  • Data, Communication, and New Technologies
  • Wellbeing, Health, and Communities
  • Sustainable Growth, Management, and Economic Productivity
  • Civil Society, Development, and Democracy

In addition to these Pathway awards, we welcome applications for Advanced Quantitative Methods (AQM) studentships from applicants who expect to use AQM in their research project.

Successful candidates will join a diverse and vibrant community of postgraduate researchers studying social sciences across the University. The University has an internationally excellent reputation for the provision of doctoral training and education, and provides outstanding facilities and support for postgraduate researchers.

A key part of the University’s mission is to tackle some of the important societal challenges currently facing the world through interdisciplinary work, enabling greater knowledge exchange and research opportunities and impact within and beyond the social sciences. Details of our world leading research centres can be found on the websites of each of our academic departments.

The awards

All awards are available as either three year PhD (+3) or four year MA + PhD (1+3) studentships, depending on the level of research training already achieved, on a full-time or part-time basis. Whilst these awards are in the main only available to nationals from the UK and EU, a small number of AQM awards are open to applicants paying fees at the international rate.

Full awards (for eligible candidates) provide fees and maintenance at standard Research Council rates (£14,777 in Session 2018/19). EU applicants are normally eligible for a fees only award, unless they have been resident in the UK for a full 3 years immediately preceding the start date of the award. AQM awards include an enhanced stipend of £3,000 per annum for full-time (+3 award) PhD study.

Timescales and how to apply

Candidates for these studentships must firstly apply for a postgraduate research programme to be eligible and then apply separately for the studentship funding awards. To apply for a PhD, please visit:

  • Research programme application deadline: 5pm (GMT), 9 January 2019
  • Studentship application deadline: 5pm (GMT), 23 January 2019

Entry requirements

• Applicants applying on both a 1+3 and a +3 basis MUST in the first instance apply for a place on a research postgraduate programme and be in receipt of a Student ID Number to be eligible for an ESRC White Rose DTP Studentship. Applications without a valid ID Number will be rejected. To apply for a place on a research postgraduate programme please visit;

• These awards are normally only available to nationals from the UK and EU and are not open to applicants who are liable to pay academic fees at the international fee rate

• Applicants must hold a First Degree at undergraduate level equivalent to at least a UK Upper Second Class Honours degree or equivalent (a less than sufficient undergraduate degree may be enhanced, eg by a Master’s degree). Applicants should either have graduated with the appropriate First Degree or be in their final year of study.

• Applicants whose first language is not English must meet the University’s English Language requirements. Some Schools require a standard of English higher than the University minimum. You should have a valid test result, which is normally no more than two years old by your official start date at the University of Leeds. Examples of an acceptable English Language Standard can be found at:

• Applicants applying for a +3 award must demonstrate that they have achieved a level of research training to allow them to proceed directly to PhD (usually through the attainment of a previous Master’s qualification in the social sciences).

How to apply

Full details on how to apply for the scholarship can be downloaded here.