PhD Studentship in Diasporic Identities

Open University - Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies (WELS)

Funded by the AHRC under its Open World Research Initiative

Based at the Open University, Milton Keynes, UK

Open to: UK/EU + Overseas Citizens

The Centre for Research in Education and Educational Technology

The Open University is one of the UK’s leading Research Institutions. In the 2014 REF 72% of its research was rated as “world leading” or “internationally excellent”.

The Centre for Research in Education and Educational Technology has an international reputation for the quality of its research. It is home to a vibrant international community of PhD students. The OU provides excellent facilities and support for students and offers a full range of training in research methods and skills. 

Full-time research students are normally expected to live within commuting distance of Milton Keynes.

CREET offers you a unique opportunity to study for a PhD in Diasporic Identities, with guidance from world experts in the field.

If you feel that the challenge of research in this exciting and interesting area is for you and you have the drive and intellectual curiosity to pursue postgraduate research, then we look forward to hearing from you. 

Details of CREET research and of this PhD studentship can be found at

The Project: Language Acts and Worldmaking

Language Acts and Worldmaking, a flagship project funded by the AHRC Open World Research Initiative, is offering four, three-year PhD studentships. One of these, in the Diasporic Identities research strand, will be based at the Open University.

Full details of the project, its aims and its core research strands can be found on the project website:

The Research Strand: Diasporic Identities

This strand works with language teachers, who move seamlessly between different linguistic and cultural worlds. Their inner selves, their personal and professional identities, are moulded and enriched by their experiences of diaspora. Highly skilled at worldmaking, teachers draw on their own rich linguistic and cultural resources for translating and re-making cultural concepts. Through this research, we seek to understand how teachers see themselves in their role as mediators between languages and cultures and how they perform this role in their teaching practice. This research also entails a critical appraisal of the institutional and political issues around the provision of modern language teaching in the UK from the perspectives of teachers. Projects with a Digital Humanities element will also be welcomed.

The PhD Studentship

A three-year funded studentship is available from October 2017. Subject to the standard eligibility criteria for RCUK studentships, funding will cover tuition fees, a research support and training grant and a stipend towards living expenses for three years.  The value of the stipend will be £14,553.

Successful applicants will be encouraged to work closely with colleagues in the project’s partner institutions, to create a dynamic research community both within and beyond the project.


Applicants must: 

  • Have obtained both an undergraduate degree and a Master’s degree in a relevant field, such as: Modern Languages, Linguistics, Education, Translation Studies, Literary or Cultural Studies, Digital Humanities, Anthropology, History, Social Sciences, or any other subject area related to the research strand
  • Have excellent working knowledge of one or more Iberian language
  • Have good written and communication skills. It is a requirement that all non-native English candidates demonstrate that they have passed the IELTS or equivalent at B2 level
  • Be able to work collaboratively (with supervisors and peers) and independently.

Application Process

Applicants are free to develop their own independent research proposal, which should relate to themes within the Diasporic Identities research strand. 

To seek advice on your proposed topic, you may contact Dr Lluïsa Astruc ( and Dr Inma Álvarez (

For detailed information and advice on how to apply for this studentship, e-mail CREET-Student-Enquiries, call Anne Foward, on 01908 655364 or go to

Closing date for applications: 3 May 2017, 12.00 midnight.

Interviews will take place in May - June 2017.

We promote diversity in employment and welcome applications from all sections of the community.