CENTRE-UB PhD Studentships

Each 4-year studentship will be conducted in close collaboration with a partner organisation. The studentships are with a range of partner organisations (including public, private, or third sector partners) with interest and expertise in human behaviour. Each doctoral researcher will have 2 academic supervisors from the University of Birmingham and a supervisor based within the partner organisation. 

Each 4-year studentship will include a stipend at UKRI rate (for 24/25 this is £19,237 – paid in monthly instalments) and tuition fees. As part of the training programme, PhD students will have access to an exciting training programme to support their research and development as a researcher. As key members of CENTRE-UB, each PhD student will be given opportunities to engage with and present at a range of dissemination and public engagement activities.  

Please see below (Projects) for more detailed information about the projects, application process, eligibility, and training opportunities for CENTRE-UB PhD students.  

We invite applications from all who meet our eligibility criteria of having obtained or who are expected to obtain at least a 2.1 degree classification (see individual studentship projects for more detailed information). CENTRE-UB is committed to enhancing the diversity of the postgraduate research community. To do this, we are working together with The Talent Foundry, an organisation that enhances social mobility in young people from underserved communities. Applicants who meet the eligibility criteria will be invited to access pre-application support. If shortlisted for an interview, The Talent Foundry will also provide preparation support. To check if you are eligible for this support, please complete this brief survey.


To be eligible for a PhD studentship, you are required to have obtained or are expected to obtain at least a 2.1 degree classification from a UK university (or equivalent for a non-UK university) in an area related to the specific PhD project.  Please check the specific requirements for your chosen project.  If you have questions about your eligibility, please contact the supervisor of the PhD project.  

Both home and international applicants are invited to apply. To be classed as a home applicant, candidates must meet the following criteria: a) be a UK National (meeting residency requirements), or b) have settled status, or c) have pre-settled status (meeting residency requirements), or d) have indefinite leave to remain or enter. If you do not meet these criteria above, you would be classed as an International applicant.


All studentships are co-designed and co-supervised by researchers at the University of Birmingham together with partner organisations from a range of sectors. This close link with partner organisations provides a unique learning opportunity for the PhD students to apply their learning across different contexts, sectors and environments beyond that of traditional academia.

We are currently inviting applications for the following projects:

Application Process

Deadline for PhD applications is Thursday 16 May 2024 17:00 

To apply for a CENTRE-UB PhD studentship you should complete the CENTRE-UB application form, which you can download here. This form, together with your CV, your academic transcript, and two references should be submitted via email to centre-ubehaviour@contacts.bham.ac.uk If you have not yet completed your undergraduate degree, please provide the transcript of the previous years and an academic reference which confirms your expected degree classification. At least one of the references should be an academic reference. In your email, you should include the project descriptor to indicate which PhD project you are applying to – the descriptor for each project is mentioned in the information above. 

Experience shows that students who are engaged in early discussions about the project with the supervisors are more likely to be successful in their application. We therefore encourage you to contact your potential supervisors and ask any questions you may have about the project. 

As part of our reporting to our funder, the ESRC, CENTRE-UB is required to provide diversity statistics for the overall funding applicant pool. All applicants are therefore requested to answer a brief online survey. Please note that all questions can be answered with ‘prefer not to say’. At the end of the survey, you will be provided with a number which you are requested to include in your studentship application. Please note that this information will not be available to the panel evaluating the studentship applications and will never be available to the supervisors of your project.  You can find the online survey here

Steps for applying for a studentship: 

  1. Select the PhD project you would like to apply to
  2. Download the Centre-UB PhD application form
  3. Complete the EDI survey
  4. Email the following documents to centre-ubehaviour@contacts.bham.ac.uk, including the project descriptor in the heading of your email: 

a) Centre-UB PhD application form

b) Your CV

c) Academic transcripts

d) References (at least one academic reference) 

For specific questions about the project, please contact the supervisor of the PhD project.

Deadline for applications 16 May, interviews are expected to be early in June 2024.


Each 4-year studentship will include a UKRI-rate stipend (for 24/25 this is £19,237 – paid in monthly instalments) and tuition fees. PhD students will also have access to ample training opportunities. 

Training Opportunities

PhD students will be provided with training tailored to their needs and expertise. Training is split into the following types:

  • specialist training, that includes in-depth subject/disciplinary methodological and theoretical training, and training and support in generating, accessing, and analysing data that supports data driven research applicable to human behaviour;
  • conceptual training, to ensure that PhD students understand the breadth of social science methods, and to support them to make: (i) informed choices about their research design; and (ii) engage critically with research outside of their immediate discipline;
  • general training, to equip PhD students with research skills required for postgraduate study and for their future career, within academia and/or beyond, e.g. project/data management, ethics, referencing, impact;
  • ‘research in practice’ training, to develop PhD students’ transferable skills and to provide practical opportunities to apply theoretical knowledge and methodological skills in different contexts and during placements;
  • cohort-building opportunities, to empower PhD students to develop peer support networks and engage in on-going learning, during and beyond the studentship.