Cities, Environment and Liveability


Sorry, we're no longer accepting applications for this project, but take a look at our Postgraduate Research programmes for more PhD opportunities.

About this project

This pathway explores how the environment links to cities across time and place.  Projects can take either an historical or geographic perspective.  From an historical perspective the places and periods covered include the United States, eighteenth century Europe, medieval Britain, and the first world war. Contemporary examples from North America, Europe and beyond are also examined. Themes include urban sustainability, cultural and societal responses to climate change, nuclear  industries, heritage, memory, war and the environment, the intersections of gender, culture, and public space, and maritime cities.

Hull Perspective

This pathway will appeal to prospective students interested in how the history of cities and communities links to contemporary thinking and policy on the environment. Students may work alongside a large doctoral cohort exploring linked themes within the AHRC-funded Heritage Consortium, a strategic partnership connected to over 70 organisations and run by the History Subject Group. Students are invited to formulate proposals using any appropriate method to address key twenty-first century environmental issues, potentially using knowledge of cities in the past. Research strengths across disciplinary boundaries include expertise on urban parks and conservation, indigenous history, U.S. national parks, sustainability and urban governance, colonial America, gender in the early modern period, natural hazards, nuclear America, the United States presidency, medieval culture, the first world war, medicine and Eastern Europe.


You are strongly advised to contact a potential supervisor and to discuss your research proposal, well before you submit an application. Please refer to the History and Geography research pages.

If you have any queries about the ESRC White Rose DTP Scholarships please email the theme lead Joy Porter, or the Programme Manager Dr Nigel Shaw.

Next steps


The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) is the UK's largest funding agency for research and postgraduate training relating to social and economic issues. At any one time, the ESRC supports over 4,000 researchers and postgraduate students in academic institutions and research policy institutes.

The University of Hull is part of the ESRC White Rose Doctoral Training Partnership - a collaboration between the Universities of Leeds, Sheffield and York, Sheffield Hallam, Hull, Bradford and Manchester Metropolitan University - and through this is able to offer a range of ESRC Postgraduate Scholarships. 

ESRC-funded postgraduates follow a 3-year PhD programme (known as a '+3') or a 4-year programme consisting of a Masters plus PhD (known as a '1+3')

The type of ESRC scholarship awarded is based on an applicant's residency status. UK and EU applicants who have been resident in the UK for at least 3 years immediately preceding the start of their course are eligible for the full scholarship. This pays:

  • the standard UK/EU tuition fees
  • an annual, tax-free maintenance stipend at the standard UK research rate (£14,496 in 2017-18)
  • access to Research Training Support Grant funds to support conference and other expenses
  • students may apply for additional funding to support overseas fieldwork, language training and overseas institutional visits.

UK and EU applicants who have not been resident in the UK for 3 years immediately preceding the start of their course may be eligible for a fees-only award, paying the standard UK/EU tuition fees only.

There is no funding for only a Masters degree.

Entry requirements

International students are not eligible for ESRC scholarships.

For 1+3 and +3 awards, applicants must hold at least a UK Upper Second Class Honours degree or equivalent (a less than sufficient undergraduate degree may be enhanced, e.g. by a Master's degree). Applicants who do not have a Masters should apply for a PhD and, if successful on the basis of their research proposal, will be offered funding for a Masters degree that fulfils the ESRC research training requirements in Social Research and a PhD.

Applicants applying for a +3 award must demonstrate that they have already completed the full research training requirements either through a Master's degree or equivalent experience.

Applicants whose first language is not English must meet the University's English Language requirements.

Applicants must live within a reasonable distance of the University of Hull whilst in receipt of the Studentship (except for time spent on agreed fieldwork).


Further details about the ESRC’s residency requirements and eligibility for funding can be found on the ESRC website.

ESRC funding commences on 1st October each academic year.

The University of Hull can accept applications to the five Interdisciplinary Themed Pathways of ESRC training in the 1+3 (Masters and PhD), +3 (PhD only), for both full and part-time study.  The Pathways and relevant subject areas at Hull are as follows:

In addition to the Themed Pathway awards, the White Rose Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) is pleased to announce 4 fully funded Advanced Quantitative Methods Awards starting September/October 2017. The DTP will give priority to those who will be working with large data sets (an ESRC priority). The DTP also has 2 Studentships to work on project areas that span the boundaries between Research Council remits.

How to apply

Applications for 2017/2018 entry will open in November 2016 with a closing date of Wednesday 1st February at 17.00.  Applications for Scholarship Consideration at the University of Hull should be made through the Postgraduate Application system

Application deadline: 1 February 2017


£14,496 (estimated in 2017-18)