Human Geography: ESRC Wales Doctoral Training Partnership PHD collaborative studentship at Swansea

  • Phd
  • Full cost of tuition fees cost and annual stipend
  • 3 February 2021

Human Geography: ESRC Wales Doctoral Training Partnership PHD collaborative studentship: Conflicting Identities and Belonging of Young Ethnic Minority People

Swansea University, supported by the ESRC Doctoral Training Partnership for Wales (Wales DTP), invites applications for funded PhD study, available to start in October 2021. The following collaborative studentship is available in the Human Geography pathway of the ESRC Wales DTP:

‘Sensing Wales: Conflicting Identities and Belonging of Young Ethnic Minority People in Wales’ in Collaboration with the Ethnic Minorities and Youth Support Team Wales

Context and Rationale: the recent ‘Migrant Crisis’, Windrush Scandal and ‘Black Lives Matter’ campaigns have prompted the Welsh Government and other progressive organisations to tackle, with renewed vigour, social exclusion, discrimination and racism, and to create fairer and more cohesive communities, as exemplified by the Government’s ambitious ‘Nation of Sanctuary’ plan. However, the contested and conflicted feelings of identity and belonging of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) migrants are often overlooked. Indeed, many reject the BAME term, claiming that it reinforces social exclusion and negative perceptions and has been all-too-easily weaponised by far-right groups and anti-migrant discourses. This project will focus on young ethnic minority migrants in Wales and study their feelings of belonging and sense of identification with Wales and the BAME terminology so as to better understand the significance of youth, race and ethnicity for community cohesion. The project is a partnership between the ESRC Human Geography Pathway at Swansea and Aberystwyth Universities and the Ethnic Minorities and Youth Support Team Wales (EYST).

Project Aims, Research Questions and Scope: the project will critically re-evaluate the ‘national’ identities and experiences of ethnic minority young migrants in Wales, with a particular emphasis on their feelings about and engagement with Welsh Government policies and public discourses that presume a univocal BAME voice, unified BAME perspective and common BAME experience. It will go beyond a politics of identity and difference, of semblance and otherness, by considering how the identities, feelings and experiences of ethnic minority young migrants are heterogeneous, complex and mutable, and will thereby enable the PhD researcher to pose more relevant and nuanced research questions so as to better address the intractable problems of systemic racism, structural marginalisation and social exclusion in a nation that proudly proclaims its hospitality to refugees and asylum seekers, amongst others.

Research Methods and Design: in keeping with the participatory action research approach of CMPR at Swansea University and the young-person-led research ethos of EYST, the PhD researcher will employ appropriate qualitative and quantitative methods (survey, ethnographic, visual (photo diary, content analysis) and action research methods). This will enable a range of ethnic minority young migrants living throughout urban and rural South Wales to take an active part in the co-production of the project to ensure that the research process and research findings are of maximum value to both ethnic minority young people themselves and the organisations that endeavour to advance their interests as active and valued citizens of Wales.

We welcome applications for both full- and part-time study. Studentships are available as either ‘1+3’ (i.e. one full-time year of a research training master’s degree followed by three years of full-time doctoral study or the part-time equivalent) or ‘+3’ (i.e. three years of full-time doctoral study or its part-time equivalent), depending on the needs of the applicant. Swansea University values diversity and equality at all levels and encourages applications from all sections of the community.

Begin your postgraduate research journey at Swansea University: a top 30 research university (REF 2014) producing internationally recognised research that makes a real difference to society. We provide a welcoming environment for PhD researchers with specialist training, advice and development opportunities. As an ESRC Wales DTP researcher, you will also benefit from cohort-based networking events and dedicated ESRC Wales DTP student representatives at each campus.


This studentship is a ‘collaborative’ award. Applicants should carefully consider the working title and description of the project and may wish to contact the named supervisor and / or the Swansea pathway contact for a discussion prior to applying. They are:

Swansea University
This is a scholarship by

Swansea University

Swansea, is a coastal city and county, officially known as the City and County of Swansea in Wales.

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A fully-funded Wales DTP studentship is available to both UK and international (including EU and EEA) students. All applicants will be eligible for a full award consisting of a maintenance stipend and payment of tuition fees at the UK research organisation rate. Applicants must satisfy studentship eligibility requirements. For further details, see the UKRI web site.  

Academic eligibility:

ESRC studentships are highly competitive. Candidates should have an excellent background in the social sciences, holding a first or an upper second class bachelor’s degree; applications from those who hold a relevant research training master’s degree (or have an equivalent background in research training) will also be considered for a ‘+3’ award.


Full-time ESRC studentship award holders cannot hold either a full-time job or a permanent part-time job during the period of their award. Part-time ESRC studentship award holders cannot hold a full-time job.


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The studentship provides the full cost of tuition fees and an annual stipend. There will be additional funds available for research expenses.

Studentship awards commence in October 2021 and will cover your tuition fees as well as a maintenance grant (currently £15,285 per annum for 2020/21 for full-time students, updated each year) and includes access to an additional Research Training Support Grant (RTSG). There are other opportunities and benefits available to studentship holders, including an overseas fieldwork allowance (if applicable), internship opportunities, overseas institutional visits and other small grants.

A ‘1+3’ studentship provides funding for four years (or part-time equivalent), involving the completion of a research training master’s degree in the first year, followed by 3 years’ research funding for a PhD. A ‘+3’ studentship provides funding for the three years of PhD research study only (or part-time equivalent).


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