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Fully Funded EPSRC & STFC PhD Scholarship: The mathematics of generalised dualities in M-theory

Swansea University - Mathematics/Theoretical Physics

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Swansea
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students, International Students
Funding amount: £15,285 p.a. (for 2020/21)
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 26th November 2020
Closes: 31st January 2021

This scholarship is funded by Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC).

Start date: October 2021


Whilst many mysteries remain about M-theory, the leading candidate for the quantum resolution of Einstein’s general relativity, its most provocative features are U-dualities. Dualities are deep relationships and equivalences between seemingly distinct systems. The overall goal of this project is to illuminate the richness of dualities by exposing their mathematical structures.

Recent work has shown that there is a rich relation between generalised notions of dualities and integrable structures characterised by quantum group symmetries. Moreover, these dualities are most naturally described using the tools of generalised geometry. This project will synthesise these developments to bring a mathematical lens onto generalised U-dualities described in terms of a novel algebraic structure called an Exceptional Drinfel’d Algebra (EDA).

This will be a cross-disciplinary project with a supervisory team comprising Dr Thompson within the Particle Physics and Theoretical Cosmology Group of the physics department and Dr Beggs and Professor Brzeziński in Algebra, Geometry and Topology Group of the mathematics department. Candidates with backgrounds in either physics or mathematics are welcome to apply.

The successful applicant will join a diverse, international, interdisciplinary, and world-leading research environment, benefitting from daily interaction within a group of staff and students counting approximately forty researchers, and from the extensive programme of research seminars, journal clubs and training opportunities of the Particle Physics and Cosmology Theory group and the Mathematics Department at Swansea.


Candidates must have a First, Upper Second Class Honours or a Master’s degree with Merit, in a relevant discipline.

For candidates whose first language is not English, we require IELTS 6.5 (with 6.0 in each component) or equivalent. Please visit our website for a list of acceptable English language tests. We prefer candidates to have already met the English Language requirements at the point of application, although this is not a requirement.

In addition to UK students, international and EU students are eligible to apply for these studentships but should note that they may have to pay the difference between the home UKRI fee and the institutional international student fee.

Funding Details

This three-year fully funded scholarship covers UK tuition fees and an annual stipend set at the minimum UKRI level (currently £15,285 per annum for 2020/21 for full-time students, updated each year).

RTSG support of £1,000 per annum is also provided.

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