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Anglia Ruskin University ARU Featured PhD Programmes
Anglia Ruskin University ARU Featured PhD Programmes

Wellcome Trust and University funded PhD Studentship: Following Animal Feed: knowledge, governance and industrial food production.


College of Social Sciences and International Studies

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Dr A Cassidy , Prof D M Winter No more applications being accepted Competition Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

This fully funded studentship will be based at the Centre for Rural Policy Research, Department of Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology.

Signs stating ‘Do not feed the animals’ are ubiquitous in zoos, national parks and many public urban spaces. They stress that uncontrolled feeding by people can affect animal health, alter wildlife behaviour and create public hygiene and nuisance issues. However, humans appear to have a widespread and longstanding proclivity to feed other animals. Many ancient cults fed animals, some modern religions require it, and feeding is often actively encouraged as a tourist attraction. Millions of people feed wildlife in gardens and in 2020, the pet-food market was forecast to be worth £2.9 billion in the UK alone. DNFTA will explore human fascinations with feeding animals - alongside the consequences for the shared health of humans, other animals, and wider environments.

DNFTA is a collaboration between Exeter’s Departments of Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology and the Department of Archaeology; alongside partners at the University of Roehampton (Anthropology), University of Reading (Geography and Environmental Science), and National Museums of Scotland (Department of Natural Sciences). 

We invite applications for this fully funded PhD studentship, starting in September 2021. The position will support research investigating the history and present day governance of animal feeding, focusing specifically on: Following Animal Feed: knowledge, governance and industrial food production

This project will use primarily qualitative research methods (such as interviewing; participant/observation; media, documentary and archival analysis) to investigate the development of animal nutrition science and feed industries in the UK from the mid-20th century into the present day. How have the sciences of animal feeding mutually shaped the production and consumption of food for domestic and wild companion species? In turn, what roles does this knowledge play in the practical governance of animal feeding? What are the consequences for shared health, ecosystems and environments?

In line with the transdisciplinary scope of DNFTA, this project will bring theory, ideas and methods from multiple disciplines to bear upon the above questions. It will be co-supervised by project staff from the sociology, anthropology, and bioarcheology teams. The candidates will join a cohort of early career researchers joining DNFTA in 2021. They will be expected to collaborate closely with project colleagues across all disciplines and work with external stakeholders in the co-production of their research.

The studentship is for 3 years full-time and will cover University tuition fees at UK rates, with a stipend of £19,919 for year 1, £21,542 for year 2 and £23,298 for year 3, and a research allowance of £5,000 for the three years.


Funding Notes

UK tuition fees and an annual maintenance allowance at current Wellcome Trust rate of £ 19,919 per year, rising to £21,542 for year 2 and £23,298 for year 3, and a research allowance of £5,000 for the three years. The award only covers UK/EU fees can international students apply and pay the difference.


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