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SeNSS Social Sciences Studentships – University of Reading

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  • Funding opportunities in the Social Sciences

SeNSS Social Sciences Studentships

ESRC-funded PhD studentships at Reading

The University of Reading is delighted to be part of the South East Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS), a prestigious Doctoral Training Partnership funded by the Economic and Social Research Council. SeNSS will be offering a number of fully funded ESRC doctoral studentships to start in autumn 2018.

SeNSS scholarships include a Research Council rate stipend (currently £14,553 for 2017/18), tuition fees at the Home/EU rate and provide innovative and challenging world-class doctoral training in a dynamic, inter-disciplinary research environment. This includes a wide range of subject-specific, generic and advanced training tailored to your individual needs as well as opportunities for overseas visits and fieldwork. As a SeNSS doctoral student, you will become part of a large cohort of fellow SeNSS students which will offer support and networking opportunities. Studentships are available as +3 (PhD) or four year awards (Masters and PhD), and on a full- or part-time basis.



The University of Reading is offering ESRC SeNSS studentships in the subjects ('pathways') listed below. As a first step, you should discuss your proposed research plans and interests with the subject/pathway contacts below and/or with a prospective supervisor. Once you have done this and have an agreed supervisor, proceed through the application process, described below. General queries can be sent to at any time.


1. Business and Management (Henley Business School)

Pathway lead contact: Dr Gianluca Marcato,  
See Reading's research in this area.


2. Development Studies (School of Agriculture, Policy & Development; School of Politics, Economics and International Relations; Department of Geography and Environmental Science)

Pathway lead contact: Dr Zahra Siddique,
See some of Reading's research in this area. 

3. Economics (Department of Economics)

Pathway lead contact: Professor Ferdinand Vieider,
See Reading's research and supervisors in this area.

4. Education (Institute of Education)

Pathway lead contact: Dr Daisy Powell,
See Reading's research and supervisors in this area here and here.

5. Human Geography (Department of Real Estate and Planning; School of the Built Environment; Department of Geography and Environmental Science)

Pathway lead contacts: Professor Kathy Pain,; Dr Libby Schweber,
See Reading's research and supervisors in this area:
Real Estate and Planning research and supervisors
Built Environment Research Division
Supervisors in Architecture
Supervisors in Construction Management and Engineering

6. Linguistics (Department of English Language and Applied Linguistics; School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences; Institute of Education)

Pathway lead contacts: Dr Jacqueline Laws,; Dr Ian Cunnings,
See some examples of Reading's research and supervisors in this area below:
Modern Languages and Linguistics research theme
Language, Development and Ageing research theme
Psycholinguistics Lab
Centre for Literacy and Multilingualism
Supervisors in the Department of English language and Applied Linguistics
Supervisors in the School of Psychology and Clinical Language
Research in Language, Literacy and Education

7. Politics and International Studies (School of Politics, Economics and International Relations)

Pathway lead contact: Dr Rob Jubb,
See Reading's research in this area.

8. Psychology (School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences)

Pathway lead contact: Professor Judi Ellis,
See Reading's  research and supervisors  in this area.

9. Socio-Legal Studies (School of Law)

Pathway lead contact: Dr Dimitrios Kyritsis,
See Reading's research and supervisors in this area.



How to apply


1. Contact a pathway lead. First make contact with a pathway lead in order to identify an appropriate supervisor.  Contacts are listed above.

2. Register your interest. Once you have identified a potential supervisor, either you or your supervisor should send an expression of interest to in the form of a brief email stating your full name, the supervisory team and a project title or area.  Further application details and paperwork will be provided once you have registered interest.

3. Develop your research proposal.  Develop your application and research proposal. In this competition, research proposals must be the work of the student applying, however your supervisor will review drafts of your research proposal and application, making suggestions for their development as appropriate.  

4. Apply for  admission. It is very important that you apply for a place of admission on your chosen PhD programme at Reading as soon as possible to enable time for application processing and interview. If you are uncertain of the correct PhD programme, discuss this with your prospective supervisor. An application for admission is a separate process to your application for SeNSS funding and is best completed as early as possible; the very latest acceptable date for admissions applications to be completed is 21 January 2018. The online application process will request a research proposal be uploaded; this need not be the final version developed with your prospective supervisor and you may upload an earlier version of the proposal with a note that you are developing for application it for SeNSS.  In the 'scholarship applied for' box, write 'SeNSS'.

5. Submission for University of Reading shortlisting. The final version of your SeNSS application should be submitted to for Reading shortlisting by Monday 15th January 2018. Submission should be via email with Word documents attached. (Details and forms will be provided when you register interest, stage 2 above.)

6. Final stage applicants. If your application is shortlisted by the University, you will then be instructed to upload your application and supporting documents to an online platform called FluidReview for the final stage of selection. Access details will be provided.  Shortlisted applications, once uploaded to Fluidreview, will be considered by a selection panel at which all universities in the SeNSS consortium are represented (see about SeNSS).

7. Results. Results will be announced in April 2018.


Eligibility Criteria

In order to receive ESRC studentship funding you must meet the eligibility criteria set out by the ESRC; see SeNSS eligibility criteria for further information.  Individual departments can advise about the English language requirements for your chosen PhD programme.

Enquiries may be sent to


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