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Torture and its aftermaths in Northern Ireland

   School of Natural and Built Environment

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  Dr Merav Amir, Prof Louise Mallinder  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project


Torture has been mainly studied as a violation of human rights, or as an individual trauma, yet the use of torture has broader repercussions. The 'Torture as a Political Technology: A Socio-Political Analysis of the Widespread Use of Torture' research project investigates the societal and political repercussions of the prevalent and systematic deployment of torture. The project explores the implications of the use of torture on affected communities; it offers an analysis of the social networks or modes of resistance consolidating in response to the use of torture; examines how torture shapes civic institutions and the provision of public services; and looks into the role of torture in shaping imperialism and colonial rule.

For more details on the project see:


The project offers a fully funded DfE doctoral studentship, to start in October 2022. The student will join the project's research team and will contribute to the project by conducting original research. The student will be affiliated with Geography in the School of Natural and Built Environment, Queen’s University Belfast. 


Applicants are asked to include a research proposal which focuses on Northern Ireland as a case study. The proposal should tackle a specific topic within the scope of the project. The proposal should demonstrate an in depth knowledge of the political and historical context of Northern Ireland in the second half of the 20th Century and into the present day, a sound theoretical background and an innovative research plan. We are particularly interested in proposals that range beyond the legal sphere, or which examine torture as a violation of human rights, or as an individual trauma. We are further interested in studies that are situated within the broad realm of political and critical theory. 

Applicants should use the ‘Research Proposal’ section of their application to provide a 1000-word (maximum) proposal outlining:

  • Proposed research question(s) aims and objectives
  • The broader context of the research and its relevance to Geography/Social Science
  • A theoretical approach
  • A methodological plan to the work
  • Options for analysis of the data gathered

Applications are welcome from candidates holding a first class or second class honours (upper) degree in social sciences and humanities disciplines. Application deadline is now 31 March 2022.

The start date for this DfE studentship will be 1 October 2022.


  1. Apply for Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in 'Geography' at Queen's University Belfast, School of Natural and Built Environment.
  2. State name of lead supervisor on application form (Dr Merav Amir).
  3. Include your Research Proposal (see above for research proposal guidance)
  4. State the intended SOURCE OF FUNDING on your application as 'DfE'
  5. To apply, visit (link to the QUB Direct Application Portal)

Funding Notes

This DfE funded studentship is open to UK candidates. The value of an award includes the cost of approved fees as well as maintenance support (stipend). As an indicator, the level for 2021/2022 was £15,609.
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