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Computer Science (8) Sociology (32)

  Research Excellence PhD Studentships


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 Wednesday, May 01, 2024
 Funded PhD Programme (Students Worldwide)

About the Programme

The University of East London (UEL) invites applications from highly qualified and motivated students for 2 Research Excellence PhD Studentships starting in September 2024. The Research Excellence PhD Studentships are the premier postgraduate merit studentship at UEL and provide full tuition fees and a generous stipend.

About the Institute of Connected Communities (ICC)

Being in Europe's largest regeneration area, UEL's research benefits from the rich surroundings and connections with the local community. 92% of our research is recognised as world-leading, internationally excellent, or internationally recognised (REF 2021). The ICC is one of the three research institutes at UEL, with its research strongly end-user-focused and embedded in a community development and co-production philosophy. We work with governments and practitioners to ensure that our research impacts policy and practice worldwide. Our research spans two thematic areas: online harm and cybercrime and community health and wellbeing. Under each, there are different topic areas.

About the University of East London

The University of East London, established in 1898, aims to advance industry 5.0 careers-first education and create a balanced, inclusive, and green future. Its research is impact-led, intellectually stimulating, and socially relevant, influenced by East London's urban transformation. The Research Excellence PhD Studentships are central to the University’s strategy to enhance research volume, quality, impact, and part of our investment in people, culture, and environment. UEL offers a comprehensive Researcher Development Programme (RDP) tailored for postgraduate research students:

  • Researcher-Ready: This training strand helps PGRs to navigate their doctoral journey by developing essential skills in research design, theory, ethics, and academic writing.
  • Empowering Researchers: This strand of the RDP focuses on peer-to-peer mentoring, ideas sharing, wellbeing, and community.
  • Pioneering Researchers: This strand of training focuses on employability skills, entrepreneurship, and knowledge exchange for academic, industry, alternative career paths.

About the Studentship

We are seeking motivated individuals to submit proposals, between 1000 and 1500 words, with an accompanying expression of interest form, to one of the following work streams:

  • Child online harms and youth cybercrime: ICC has a strong focus on child online harms and youth cybercrime. Our research has been funded by the European Commission, NGOs, the UK, and international governments, and the UKRI. We have conducted research exploring the human and technical drivers of cybercrime and the impact of online harm on children and young people in the UK and internationally. We welcome proposals in these broad areas. You will be working with Professor Julia Davidson, OBE, one of the UK's foremost experts on policy and practice in the areas of CSA, CSE, and online harms.
  • Social prescribing: ICC has been leading research, evaluation, and training in social prescribing at local, regional, national, and international levels for the last decade, with key contributions to the development of social prescribing in the UK through NHS guidance, policy development, journal, and book publications. Dr. Marcello Bertotti is one of the pioneers of social prescribing and is currently expanding the field to include, but not be limited to, social prescribing for children and young people, social prescribing models in secondary care (e.g., hospitals), digital social prescribing (online delivery of social prescribing activities), the development of social prescribing models internationally, social prescribing and loneliness/social isolation, and social prescribing for vulnerable groups.
  • Social justice: If you are passionate about addressing health equity, dismantling structural inequalities, and promoting social justice, the ICC offers you an excellent opportunity to engage in impactful research that influences public spending and service delivery and to contribute to shaping policies and practices that promote equity and social justice. Dr Darren Sharpe leads the Masters programme on social justice, and ICC Evaluation Unit.

Eligibility criteria

  • At least an upper second (2:1) Honours degree from a UK Higher Education Institution or an overseas qualification that can be deemed equivalent. 
  • Where English is not the applicant’s first language, a minimum IELTS Academic score of 7.0 overall with a minimum of 6.5 in all components is required. Such assessment of English language competence must normally have been undertaken no more than two years prior to application.

Informal enquiries about the studentships should be addressed in the first instance to  

Closing date for expression of interests is 1st May 2024. Interviews week commencing 6th May 2024

Funding Notes

The studentship is for a period of three years including fees and an annual stipend of £21,237 (2024/2025), plus a training bursary of £2,000. The candidate will be expected to complete the full application and admissions process to in September 2024.
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