PhD Studentships in Politics & IR at Queen Mary University of London

The School of Politics and International Relations (SPIR) at the Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) offers a number of generous studentships for students commencing their doctoral studies in September 2014. The deadline for consideration for funded places is 31st January 2014. Candidates whose applications are received after this date may be considered for admission, but not for funding.

Applications are welcome in all the fields and disciplines for which the School provides expert supervision. A full list of research interests in SPIR is available on the website. Applicants with interdisciplinary projects (for example, with history and geography) are also encouraged to apply.

Before applying, interested applicants should make informal contact with a potential supervisor to establish whether SPIR can provide them with expert supervision. They should make sure to include a draft research proposal with any enquiry to a potential supervisor – academic members of staff are unable to respond to general, undefined queries about research degrees. General information on the research degree programmes can be requested to the Research Manager.

Funding Available for Sept 2014 Entry

  • QMUL Principal’s Studentships. Queen Mary Principal’s studentships are open to UK, EU and international students. The school will have up to eight studentships available for entry in September 2014. They cover tuition fees and a maintenance allowance of around £15,590 per year for up to three years. Candidates will normally be expected to have a good first degree and a Masters degree in Politics, International Relations, or a related subject.
  • China Scholarships Council. One studentship is available through the China Scholarships Council (CSC). The CSC administers government scholarships to sponsor Chinese citizens wishing to study abroad. Under this scheme, Queen Mary provides a fee waiver to cover all tuition fees, and the CSC provides living expenses (for up to 3 years) and one return flight ticket to successful PhD applicants.
  • Economic & Social Research Council: Doctoral Training Centre (London Social Science) Studentships. The School of Politics & IR is part of a prestigious ESRC-funded Doctoral Training Centre (DTC), London Social Science, with QMUL and Goldsmiths, University of London. The DTC will provide funding for up to two PhD studentships in SPIR for entry in 2014. Studentships cover up to four years of tuition fees and provide a standard maintenance grant of £15,590 per year. PhDs with a particular emphasis on quantitative research may receive an additional Advanced Quantitative Methods (AQM) stipend of £3,000. Successful applicants will be offered a variety of flexible models of combined PhD study and research training: either a 1 + 3 model (i.e. 1 year doing an MRes in advanced research training, plus 3 years of PhD) or a model where the research training is completed throughout the course of the 4 years of the studentship. Students who already hold a Masters degree with sufficient training can also apply for the standard 3-year funded PhD. Candidates need to complete an additional ESRC application form to be considered for funding through the DTC. Further details and guidance on how to apply, as listed below, are also available online. Candidates must adhere to the current residential eligibility rules as laid out in the ESRC Postgraduate Funding Guide.

How to Apply

  1. For QMUL Principal’s Studentships, apply via the standard PhD application process, indicating in your application that you wish to be considered for funding. Applications can be made online. Further details on how to apply are available online. Hard copies of the application form are also available.
  2. For China Scholarships Council studentships, apply via the standard PhD application process, indicating in your application that you wish to be considered for CSC funding. Applications can be made online. Further details on how to apply are available online. Hard copies of the application form are also available. In addition, you will need to make a separate application to the CSC for funding.
  3. For ESRC 1+3 Studentships, apply for a relevant MRes online and complete the additional ESRC application form, which is available to download (under Studentships). This additional form should be uploaded to your online QMUL application.
  4. For ESRC 3-year and +4 Studentships, apply via the standard PhD application process online and complete the additional ESRC application form, which is available to download (under Studentships). This additional form should be uploaded to your online QMUL application.

Applications to all studentships must consist of the following:

  • A research proposal which should include a hypothesis, key questions to be addressed by your research, methodology and an indicative bibliography. Further advice on writing a research proposal is available. The research proposal word length for a studentship application is max. 1500 words.
  • Applicants should have a 2:1 or equivalent in their first degree and if their first language is not English they must be able to provide recent evidence that their spoken and written command of the English language is adequate for the programmes for which you have applied. They need to provide evidence of an English language test score or intend to take a test before their studies. Information about English language entry requirements can be found online.
  • Transcripts from previous degrees.
  • 2 academic references.
  • A full curriculum vitae (CV)
  • A supporting statement (1 page A4), which explains why the applicant wants to take the programme. This should address the following: previous academic and other experience relevant to their proposed research; why they wish to undertake this research at Queen Mary; what research training and professional preparation they have already received, and what further training they think they will need; any ethical issues they will need to consider in undertaking their research.

Complete applications must be received in the Admissions Office no later than midnight on 31st January 2014. ESRC DTC funding forms must also be received by this date. It is the candidate’s responsibility to ensure that academic references are also received by this date. Applications without references will be considered incomplete and will not be processed further.
Candidates whose applications are received after this date may be considered for admission but not for funding. Candidates may be interviewed for a place in February 2014. Those shortlisted for funding will be passed to a selection panel for final assessment. Applicants will be informed of the outcome of their application from mid-March 2014. CSC candidates will be informed of the result of their application from April 2014.

General enquiries about making a formal application can be addressed to the Research Manager, or by calling +44 0207 882 5829.

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