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CoSS PhD Scholarship – The impacts on families and children of long-term private renting.

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  • Full or part time
    Prof M Munro
    Dr M Livingston
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

Information on the School/Research Group

The successful student will join an exceptionally strong research environment. The co-supervisors are linked to two major ESRC-funded research centres CaChe (the Collaborative Centre for Housing Evidence) and UBDC (Urban Big Data Centre), in each there are world-leading experts in relevant fields to which the student will have immediate access. They are located within Urban Studies, which was ranked first in the national research evaluation framework (REF) in 2014. Every student enjoys support from two supervisors, through regular meetings and discussions.

The student will join a vibrant group of around 35 PhD students, both national and international, working on a range of broad urban topics using a variety of methodological approaches. Students are encouraged to join one of the 3 research groups in Urban Studies, which provides regular opportunities to meet like-minded scholars, discuss forthcoming and contemporary work, and social activities. In addition Urban Studies runs regular workshops and seminars which students are encouraged to attend. There are funds available to organize academic and non-academic events for PhD students – recently these have included away days and writing retreats. We have a strong commitment to ensuring that the PhD experience is as collegiate and connected as the student wants.
As the PhD progresses, are be encouraged to present and discuss their work internally and externally, with an aim of building national and international networks that will support them into the next stage of their career.

Project details

The project will tackle an issue of great and growing contemporary relevance. Popular coverage has highlighted the plight of ‘generation rent’ – a group of younger people who stay longer in the private rented sector (PRS) than previous generations, trapped by restricted access to home ownership, precarious work and incomes, and dwindling social rented housing. However, the growing PRS is now a longer term home for many families with children , around a quarter of the total.
It is vital to explore how this shift impacts on families and their children: the PRS provides the worst quality housing in the UK, often poorly maintained, damp and difficult to heat, and poorly managed by landlords. Additionally, it is a chronically insecure tenure, tenants can be asked to leave at a month’s notice without giving any reason. Together this suggests that living long-term in the PRS has the potential to have adverse consequences on health, mental health and well-being, and possibly on children’s educational outcomes if they are forced to move school frequently.

This project provides an exciting opportunity to explore these issues in detail, exploiting existing large-scale cohort studies that are following representative samples of people as they age, allowing a focus on parents and their children (from a group born in 1970) and also children directly (using the Millennial cohort study of children born in 2000/1). The work has real potential to enhance understanding of the links between housing and well-being and make a real contribution to international and national academic and contemporary policy debates.

Funding Notes

Applicants must meet the following eligibility criteria
• A good first degree (at least 2.1) or Master’s degree, preferably with a social science component
• A good grounding in quantitative skills and an aptitude to develop these further through taking training available
• Demonstrate an interest in some of the key issues in the project – for example, inequalities, health or life chances.



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