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Research Scholarships

Fully funded research scholarships in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at Lancaster University

Fully funded research scholarships

We are currently offering three exciting PhD scholarships that include all tuition fees and a contribution of £15,000 towards maintenance costs for students starting their course in 2019/20.

One scholarship is available in each of the following three subjects and applications are welcome from UK, EU and overseas students.

The Cold War in Global Perspectives

The Department of History invites applications for a PhD in History focused on exploring the Cold War in global perspectives. Particular themes could include post-colonial security issues, such as defence and/or military assistance relations between the superpowers, the former metropoles or other West European countries and African states, conflicts, human rights or peacekeeping. We would particularly welcome applications which avoid a Eurocentric perspective.

The Department of History has a strong and growing reputation for research in this field with three new appointments complementing the thematic expertise of existing staff. The department is launching a new MA in Military and International History in 2019 and are thus growing research communities in this field. You are also likely to benefit from a variety of Cold War-related projects in the department, as well as staff roles on international academic bodies and Marco Wyss’s editorial roles including the International Journal of Military History and Historiography, and the book series ‘New Perspectives on the Cold War’ (Brill).

Please contact Dr Marco Wyss ( to discuss your interest in this fully funded PhD.

AR6711-N. Dinner in Honor of President Kennedy, Given by Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, Prime Minister of Nigeria
Credit: Abbie Rowe. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston

Family Justice

Located in the Centre for Child and Family Justice Research within the highly regarded Department of Sociology at Lancaster University, this project offers the right candidate an exceptional learning opportunity. The project will be linked to the work the Centre is currently undertaking to establish the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory for England and Wales. In addition, our collaborating partner is the leading national practice organisation: the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass).

You will join a growing cohort of doctoral students within the Centre and, given the collaborative nature of the project, will have considerable opportunity to engage with high profile policy and practice agencies. The project would suit applicants who have a background in law, policy, social work or social science.

The focus of the project will be on the family court modernisation agenda in England, in particular, it will address pressing national questions about the challenges and implications of completing public law children’s cases within far shorter performance timescales, and whether shorter is always better in terms of children’s outcomes. A number of high profile appeal court cases have brought tensions between performance and professional discretion sharply into view, alongside critical questions of how the family courts ensure timely decisions about children’s futures. Cases in which parents lack litigation capacity; cases of large sibling groups and those that concern transnational family networks all pose particular challenges for frontline social workers, lawyers and judges regarding timeliness. Frontline practitioners, now operating under increasing pressure due to the volume of cases coming before the courts, must carefully balance competing tensions between human rights and performance whilst ensuring children who cannot return to birth parents find the security they need through adoption or other out of home placement. These pressures are not particular to the UK given similar timescales for permanency decision-making, which ensures the project’s international relevance.

This qualitative project will combines case review with ethnographic observation.  The research will build on and be further informed by case analysis currently being undertaken by Cafcass and work that the Centre will be doing to produce a quantitative picture of “long-running cases” in England and Wales.

Please contact Professor Karen Broadhurst ( to discuss your interest in this fully funded PhD.

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This is an exciting opportunity to work in the Department that is 15th in the QS World rankings for Linguistics. Based in the Department of Linguistics and English Language at Lancaster University, you will study the dynamics of speech production, using novel methods to track the movement of the tongue and lips during speech (e.g. ultrasound tongue imaging, electromagnetic articulography).

You will be part of a research team with broad expertise in phonetics, including speech production, sociophonetics, sound change, and speech technology. The Department has a substantial Phonetics Laboratory with extensive facilities for articulatory speech measurement, as well as an active research group in phonetics with 4 full-time academics and 7 PhD students.

You will receive hands-on training in relevant methods and will also benefit from interaction with the broader phonetics community at Lancaster.

Please contact Dr Sam Kirkham ( to discuss your interest in this fully funded PhD.

Phonetics lab in Linguistics
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Further information

Funding available

The funding will cover your course fees for the duration of your PhD studies and we will contribute £15,000 per year towards other costs. 

Deadline for applications

You should submit your application by 5pm GMT on Friday 1 March 2019.

If you have not already done so, apply for a PhD in the appropriate department through the University’s online application system. Simply create an account on the My Applications website and then select ‘Create a new application’ from your homepage once you are logged-in.

In addition, complete and return the Faculty Scholarship Application Form 2019 to the appropriate departmental contact below.

The Cold War in Global Perspectives: Dr Marco Wyss (

Family Justice: Professor Karen Broadhurst (

Phonetics: Dr Sam Kirkham (

The scholarships will be awarded on a competitive basis. Candidates will be assessed based on the following criteria:

  • Potential for an original contribution.
  • Evidence of scholarly ability:
         - clear and concise description of the study
         - awareness of current literature in the field
         - understanding of research methodology appropriate for an early stage postgraduate student
         - a research project that can be completed within the timeframe allowed for a PhD

All students are welcome to apply, whether you are from the UK, EU or overseas.

Please contact the relevant Department to make an informal enquiry about your area of interest.

The Cold War in Global Perspectives: Dr Marco Wyss (

Family Justice: Professor Karen Broadhurst (

Phonetics: Dr Sam Kirkham (