ESRC Collaborative Studentship in Empirical Studies in Law

Key facts

Application deadline 1 February 2018
Start date 1 October 2018
Duration 4 years (1+3) or 3 years (+3) full-time or the equivalent part-time
Funding body ESRC
Level of study Postgraduate research
Award type PhD studentship
Number of studentships 1

Cardiff University’s School of Law and Politics, supported by the ESRC Doctoral Training Partnership for Wales (Wales DTP), invites applications for funded PhD study.

One collaborative studentship is available within Empirical Studies in Law, a field of research which brings together methods from social science to address legal challenges in society and inform policy development:

These ‘collaborative studentships’ involve liaison with the National Assembly for Wales at many key stages of the research.

Cardiff University's School of Law and Politics has a diverse and vibrant research culture, with a strong reputation in socio-legal research. It is ranked in the top five for research that has a significant impact on society and informs change. It houses both the Centre of Law and Society and the internationally renowned Journal of Law and Society, which was established in 1974. We have a number of students currently funded by the ESRC carrying out empirical legal studies in a range of areas.


If you have any questions regarding these studentships please contact the supervisor or pathway leader Professor John Harrington.


Law and Politics Postgraduate office

Funding details

Tuition fee support Full UK/EU tuition fees
Maintenance stipend Doctoral stipend matching UK Research Council National Minimum

Eligibility criteria

Residency UK Research Council eligibility conditions apply
Academic criteria

Applications are invited from exceptional candidates with a First Class or strong Upper Second Class honours degree, or appropriate Master’s degree. Both the University and the ESRC Wales DTP value diversity and equality at all levels. We strongly encourage applications from all sections of the community.

We welcome applications for both full and part-time study, and the studentship is available as either ‘1+3’ (i.e one full time year of Social Science Research Methods Training 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).


Law and Politics Postgraduate office

You are applying for a place at Cardiff University and the chance to be entered in an ESRC Wales DTP open competition for a studentship award.

Applications should be submitted to the PhD in Law with an October 2018 start date by the deadline of 16:00, 1 February 2018. Incomplete applications or applications received after this specified time will not be accepted

In the “Funding” section of the Online Application Form, please indicate that you are applying for an ESRC PhD studentship and the project title you are applying for.

Your application must contain the following documents:

  1. Covering letter (up to two pages): Please address to the relevant supervisor of the project (see project list above). The covering letter must set out your reasons and motivation for applying to study at Cardiff University, and specify your chosen pathway; your understanding, and expectations of doctoral study; and your academic interests generally, and particularly how these relate to the description of the project supplied. The covering letter should be no more than two pages, and can be uploaded to the “Personal Statement” section of the Online Application Form. Please also specify which pathway you will be applying to and whether you wish to apply on a +3 or 1+3 basis.
  2. Academic / professional qualifications: this includes transcript of marks and degree certificate (if available).
  3. Proof of English Language Competency if English is not your first language: We require an overall minimum score of 7.0 in IELTS, with a score of 6.5 for each category except for writing where we require a score of 7.0.
  4. References: All applications require two academic references to be submitted in support. Candidates must approach referees themselves and request a reference to be  submitted. Please ensure your chosen referees are aware of the funding deadline and have submitted their references by this date.
  5. Curriculum vitae: It should be no longer than two pages.
  6. Research proposal: For collaborative studentships, the proposal should build directly on the outline description of the projects that has been supplied. The proposal should be up to a maximum of 1000 words, not including bibliographic references. We suggest that you use the following five headings in your research proposal:
    1. Your reflections on the title, aims and purpose of the research.
    2. Your proposals for developing the design and methods of the study.
    3. A description of potential outcomes of the project for understanding, knowledge, policy and practice (as appropriate to the topic).
    4. Bibliographic references.

Short-listed applicants will be invited to interview, which are expected to take place in February/March 2018. After interview, a final short-list of applicants will be put forward to a Panel convened by the ESRC Wales DTP Management Group at which final decisions with regard to studentship awards will be made. In most cases, successful applicants can expect to hear by mid-April 2018

We reserve the right to close applications early should sufficient applications be received.


Law and Politics Postgraduate office

Funding opportunity provided by:

Meet us at our Information Fair on 22 February 2018.

Eligible research programmes