Global Challenges PhD Scholarships

We are investing in up to 20 fully-funded Global Challenges PhD scholarships, addressing the key global issues of the modern world and inviting the very best applicants to join us in our research.

We are offering up to 20 fully-funded Global Challenges PhD scholarships, available to UK/EU applicants. Find out more about how to apply, the funding available, and the themes under which the scholarships work below.

A minimum of ten scholarships will be awarded by the selection panel in the first round of scholarships.

The Global Challenges themes

The scheme– under the title of 'Understanding and tackling global challenges'– encompasses twelve themes, with projects involving joint supervision across schools or colleges:

  • Engineering and technology in development contexts (including infrastructure);
  • Urbanisation (including global cities);
  • Digital technology for inclusive growth;
  • Sustainable agriculture (including food security);
  • Unintended consequences of aid;
  • Mental health and wellbeing;
  • Migration and displacement;
  • Shocks, security, risks and resilience;
  • Building effective and inclusive institutions;
  • Maternal and child health;
  • Vaccines and infectious disease (including antimicrobial resistance);
  • Energy.

Scholarship value and duration

The award comprises:

  • Full payment of tuition fees at UK/EU fee level of £4,270 in 2018/19, to be paid by the University;
  • An annual tax-free doctoral stipend at £14,764 for 2018/19, to be paid in monthly instalments to the Global Challenges scholar by the University;
  • The tenure of the award can be for up to 3.5 years (42 months).

Download our terms and conditions for the scholarships.

The scheme will be co-funded by philanthropic donations from alumni and other individual donors raised through the Development and Alumni Relations Office fundraising activities, matched centrally by the University for a period of five years, initially on a ratio of 50:50. 

How to apply

  1. Apply directly via the University of Birmingham Postgraduate application system, the Postgraduate portal, by clicking 'Apply online' on the relevant project below.
  2. Within the application, at the 'Programmes open for Admission' page, please select ‘PhD Global Challenges FT’.
  3. Please detail the advertised supervisor and project title under the 'Research Information' section of the application form.
  4. Please note, as a standard application process, you will be asked to submit a proposal as part of your application. Please complete "Global Challenges PhD Scholarship: project title" for this section as you will be applying for an established project by the supervisor. 

You can use our advice and guidance pages as you complete your application. Applications should include a statement of research interests. We encourage you to contact prospective supervisors informally to discuss the project.

Successful applicants are expected to start their research project from September 2018.

Our Global Challenges PhD projects

The deadline for 2018 entry has now passed. Projects for 2019 entry will be announced in December 2018.