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The School of Agriculture, Policy and Development has a long-established track record for research, working with a variety of industrial and academic partners to achieve significant social and economic benefits.

We are internationally recognised for our research excellence and are the 3rd highest placed UK University (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2024 – Agriculture and Forestry) for teaching and research. Ranked 27th in the world. 

Learn more about our research


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Types of doctoral degree

We offer several routes to a doctoral qualification, so you can find the one that suits you and the topic you wish to study.

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Part-time study

Part-time PhDs are available as well as full-time, so you can choose a mode of study that suits your circumstances.

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PhD by Distance

Our PhD by Distance programme allows you to benefit from the expertise of a Reading-based supervisor, while conducting your research in a different location.


Our PhD programmes

We currently offer the following PhD programmes:

  • PhD in Agricultural, Environmental and Food Economics
  • PhD in Animal, Dairy and Food Chain Sciences
  • PhD in Consumer Behaviour and Food Marketing
  • PhD in Crop Sciences
  • PhD in Ecology and Agri-Environmental Research
  • PhD in International and Rural Development.

If you are considering a PhD in International and Rural Development, you may be eligible for a fully funded scholarship from the new SEDarc Doctoral Training Programme. We also offer a number of specific PhD projects, which are listed in the Find a PhD section.

Find out more about how to prepare a research proposal and apply for a PhD


Find a PhD

Find a PhD opportunity that aligns with your interests and career ambitions

We want to ensure that your time spent with us is as rewarding as possible.

To allow you to explore your various options, here's a list of some of our currently available PhD opportunities. We do, however, offer many more options, so please contact us for further information.