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PhD Scholarship Opportunities

The School of Anthropology and Conservation (SAC)

The School of Anthropology and Conservation (SAC) at the University of Kent invites applications from outstanding candidates for our range of competitive PhD scholarship opportunities.

The School has an international reputation for the research of its academic staff, many of whom are leaders in their respective fields. Its vibrant research culture provides excellent opportunities for postgraduate study, and the breadth of expertise within the SAC enables us to offer research supervision across a wide range of topics.

Full details of scholarship opportunities will be made available in November. However the School has been extremely successful over the last 10 years at securing a significant number of Scholarships for PhD students. We are delighted that 12 of our September 2015 intake of PhD students have fully funded scholarships either from Research Councils or from the Kent 50th Anniversary Fund.

Scholarship Competitions

  • NERC ENVEAST Doctoral Training Partnership – interviews 17/18 Feb 2016
    The School are delighted to have two projects shortlisted for funding by the EnvEast DTP:
  • Quantifying biodiversity responses to land-use change via non-invasive sampling of tropical mammals – lead supervisor Dr Matthew Struebig.
  • Where is Darwin's 'Green Carpet'? A novel approach to modelling seed dispersal – lead supervisor Dr Dave Roberts.
  • Successful candidates who meet RCUK’s eligibility criteria will be awarded a NERC studentship. In most cases, UK and EU nationals who have been resident in the UK for 3 years are eligible for a full award. In 2015/16, the stipend was £14,057.
  • ESRC South East Doctoral Training Centre – SAC is a member of two pathways within this centre of research excellence providing outstanding social science postgraduate training: Anthropology and Environment, Energy and Resilience. Studentships cover fees and stipends and are open to UK/EU students who meet the residential criteria. Application deadline to be confirmed but expected to be: January 2016
  • CHASE (AHRC) Studentships – This Doctoral Training Partnership offers students a range of exciting opportunities to gain professional experience, work across institutions and disciplines and acquire advanced research skills. Studentships cover fees and stipends and are open to UK/EU students who meet the residential criteria. Application deadline to be confirmed but expected to be: January 2016
  • The Vice Chancellor’s Research Scholarships – Open to applicants from the fields of social anthropology, environmental anthropology, biological anthropology or biodiversity conservation. We particularly welcome applicants who wish to undertake interdisciplinary projects relevant to the School’s research culture. Scholarships cover Home/EU tuition rate plus a maintenance grant. Application deadline to be confirmed but expected to be: January 2016
  • The Benefits of Biodiversity: Human-Wildlife Interactions in Urban Guyana. The selected candidate will be entered into an open competition for an ESRC PhD scholarship to support UK/EU students. To be considered for the scholarship, please send your CV and a covering letter to Zoe Davies z.g.davies@kent.ac.uk by 30th December 2015.

When further details become available they will be available on our website: www.kent.ac.uk/sac/scholarships/index.html

PhD Opportunities

We are currently considering applications across a range of topics related to the School’s interdisciplinary research culture. Full details of the supervisory interests of staff can be found on our School website. We are also particularly keen to hear from candidates interested in working on the following projects / topics / research areas:

Biological Anthropology

  • Life history evolution: how to assess when fertility reduction is really a “Darwinian Paradox”; the difference between male and female mortality across populations. Applied evolutionary anthropology: “harmful cultural practices” in rural South Africa; family planning in rural South Africa. – Dr Oskar Burger
  • Human sexual behaviour, evolutionary anthropology, reproductive timing, life history theory, and evolutionary psychology. In particular I am keen to hear from applicants interested in the following project: Competition and Allies: Female/Female relationships across the menstrual cycle – Dr Sarah Johns
  • Behavioural ecology of social foraging in chimpanzees’ – Dr Nicholas Newton-Fisher
  • Socio-ecology and communication in non-human primates – Dr Brandon Wheeler

Socio-cultural Anthropology

  • Southeast Asia, Pacific region, anthropology of place, land conflict, natural resource management, post-conflict reconstruction, inequality and development, animism and transforming ideas of the sacred, or on issues of kinship and relatedness – Dr Judith Bovensiepen
  • Ethnic, national and diasporic Identities, political violence, Middle East/Mediterranean Basin, inter-communal relations, shrines, holy sites and pilgrimages, early Christianity, and psychoanalysis and anthropology – Professor Glenn Bowman
  • Social Computing, Agency and Adaptation, Peer-to-peer Knowledge Transmission, Social and Cultural Responses to Crisis, Cross-cultural studies, Mathematical Anthropology, Ontological approaches to origins, reproduction and change for cultural objects. Any ethnographic area, although Professor Fischer has long term experience in South Asia and Oceania – Professor Michael Fischer.
  • The frontiers of Europe and Near/Middle East (especially the Muslim Balkans, Turkey and the post-Ottoman world); Socialist/ Post-socialist economy and society; anthropology of Islam; cosmological thought; ethics and personhood; anthropology of diplomacy, geopolitics and international relations; trans-regional and diasporic networks – Dr David Henig
  • Europe; history, memory, heritage; time; rural social change; tourism; anthropology of science and technology; anthropology and literature – Dr Matthew Hodges
  • Anthropology of Finance, Organisational or Business Anthropology, Amazonian Anthropology, Indigenous Urbanisation – Dr Daniela Peluso
  • Enactive approaches to the ethnographic study of kinship. Critical developments in forms of life in a Europe in crisis. Personhood and identity in contemporary society. Regional interests: Brazil, Southern Europe, Eurasian populations in Southeast Asia – Professor Joao de Pina-Cabral
  • Work and labour, class, criminality, corruption, urban anthropology, economy and India – Dr Andrew Sanchez
  • The social consequences of austerity for European societies. I welcome research proposals interested to investigate the local dimensions of the crisis ethnographically - Dr Dimitrios Theodossopoulos

Human Ecology

  • Evolution, ecology and conservation of birds – Dr Peter Bennett
  • The wildlife craft souvenir trade. Conservation and tourism. Agroforestry and sustainable livelihoods – Dr Ian Bride
  • Understanding how interactions with biodiversity influence people’s psychological well-being. Finding mechanisms to increase people’s engagement in citizen science initiatives. Urban ecology and conservation. Relationships between government agencies, conservation NGOs and corporations. Conservation planning and management – Dr Zoe Davies
  • Identifying new priority areas for conservation in the UK; developing optimal approaches for engaging with land-owners to design conservation landscapes – Dr Bob Smith
  • I would like to hear from applicants interested in the following project: Gola Forest: Bushmeat and people. Bridging the fields of conservation, development and public health, this project will use cutting-edge interview techniques and theoretical models of human decision-making to investigate bushmeat-related activities in Gola forest, Sierra Leone and Liberia – Dr Freya St. John
  • Responses of tropical biodiversity to environmental change, mammal conservation, agriculture (oil palm) and forestry certification policies, spatial analyses, Southeast Asia - Dr Matthew Struebig

Further details and applications

Full details of scholarships are available via: www.kent.ac.uk/sac/scholarships/index.html
For information about our PhD programmes and making an application please visit our website.


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