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As a research-intensive university, Reading has partnered with a number of other institutions to successfully bid for funding from UK Research Councils, charities and trusts in order to form highly respected doctoral training centres for postgraduate researchers.

In addition to specialised training, these collaborations offer you the chance to compete for funding across a range of areas. The partnerships and centres with which we are involved are listed here, grouped by the relevant funding organisation.

Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)

South, West and Wales Doctoral Training Partnership (SWW DTP)

As part of a consortium of eight UK universities, the University of Reading offers training and postgraduate support for doctoral students across a range of disciplines:

  • archaeology
  • classics
  • cultural geography
  • English literature
  • film, theatre and television
  • history
  • history of art
  • law
  • modern languages and European studies
  • philosophy
  • politics and international relations.


Find out more about the SWW AHRC DTP studentships


Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)

AgriFood Training Partnership (AFTP)

Bringing together the University of Reading, Birmingham University, Leatherhead Food Research and Rothamstead Research, the research undertaken by this partnership focuses on creating a food industry resourced to produce sufficient sustainable food for health.

Find out more about the AgriFood Training Partnership 


Collaborative Training Partnerships (CTPs)

A total of 10 CTPs are being funded by BBSRC to carry out important scientific research in key aspects of agriculture. The University of Reading is involved in two of these.

The first, led by Waitrose, focuses on crop production, sustainable soil and ecosystem services, and also involves Rothamsted Research and the universities of Warwick and Lancaster.

The second concerns crop research and is led by Berry Gardens. Alongside Reading, it will involve the universities of Nottingham and Lancaster.


FoodBioSystems Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP)

The University of Reading is one of six partner universities – Aberystwyth, Brunel, Cranfield, Queen’s University Belfast, Reading and Surrey – which together form this doctoral training partnership and offer PhD supervision, training and support across a wide range of disciplines:

  • agriculture
  • biological and biomedical sciences
  • chemistry
  • food and nutritional sciences
  • geography and environmental sciences
  • pharmacy.

Find out more about the FoodBioSystems DTP


Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

South East Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS)

Covering a wide range of social science disciplines and related multidisciplinary areas, this doctoral training partnership comprises 10 UK universities, including Reading.

Studentship pathways are normally available in:

  • development studies
  • economics
  • education
  • human geography
  • linguistics
  • management and business studies
  • political science and international studies
  • psychology and socio-legal studies.


Find out more about SeNSS


Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)

EPSRC Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP)

This training grant funds a number of new PhD projects each year which are all advertised on our PhD studentships page.


Centre for Doctoral Training in the Mathematics of Planet Earth (CDT in MPE)

This centre sees the University of Reading join forces with Imperial College London to train the next generation of mathematical scientists for some of the key challenges facing the planet that relate to weather and climate science.

Find out more about the Centre for Doctoral Training in the Mathematics of Planet Earth


Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)

SCENARIO Doctoral Training Partnership

The Postgraduate Centre in the Science of the Environment: Natural and Anthropogenic Processes, Impacts and Opportunities (SCENARIO) is a collaboration between the University of Reading, the University of Surrey, the NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology and the British Geological Survey.

It aims to train the next generation of doctoral researchers in the area of environmental science.

Find out more about the SCENARIO Doctoral Training Partnership

Centre for Doctoral Training in Quantitative and Modelling Skills in Ecology and Evolution (QMEE)

This centre is a partnership with Imperial College London and enables PhD students to tackle real-world ecological and evolutionary problems by connecting theory, data, and practice.

Find out more about the QMEE Centre for Doctoral Training