The Ph.D. studentships provide support for research projects on Commonwealth-related themes.
Two studentships are available each year, to the maximum value of £5,500 GBP each:
- One for students registered at UK universities
- One for students registered at universities in other Commonwealth countries
Applications are welcomed from a broad range of disciplines in the humanities and social sciences, but preference may be given to disciplines usually covered by the Round Table journal, including (but not exclusively) politics, international relations, economics, international history, geography, law, development studies, and area studies.
Applications in the pure sciences and medicine will not be considered, but studies relating to science and health policies are welcomed.
Proposed research must:
- relate to the Commonwealth as a whole or to any Commonwealth-wide institution or organization, or
- have a Commonwealth comparative aspect, or
- be of relevance to more than one Commonwealth country.
For example, a research project comparing LGBT rights in South Africa and Uganda would be eligible, as would a project on the reform of colonial-era anti-LGBT legislation in India, but a project on the role of Stonewall in advocating for LGBT rights in the UK would not. A project on media bias or election law in Canada would not be eligible, but a project comparing Canada with Jamaica or Australia would.
It is not expected that the applicant’s Ph.D./DPhil research already has a Commonwealth focus. Applications are particularly welcomed where the award will enable the applicant to add a Commonwealth dimension to the work.
The studentships are funded by The Round Table: The Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs and the journal’s publisher, Routledge, in association with the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU).
The first studentship is open to registered Ph.D. students from UK universities, although not necessarily UK citizens.
The second is open to registered Ph.D. students from ACU member universities [https://www.acu.ac.uk/our-members/] in Commonwealth counties other than the UK and to Chevening and Commonwealth Scholarship alumni who are Ph.D. students at any Commonwealth university outside the UK.
As part of the studentship, applicants are required to identify and work with a mentor at a university in a Commonwealth country [https://thecommonwealth.org/member-countries] other than that in which they are based. This should be an expert in a subject linked to the applicant’s subject of research, who will be able to provide support and advice during the studentship. Before applying, applicants are encouraged to informally approach at least one potential mentor and, if their application is successful, will then be required to obtain a letter of support from their mentor to agree to the mentorship before their studentship is confirmed.
The role of the mentor
The mentor will be expected to hold a minimum of two virtual meetings with the student during the period of the studentship. They will be expected to be in contact with the student by email to share their experiences in their relevant field, provide advice around publishing, events, and trends in their field, and challenge and empower the student to consider new ways of thinking.
The mentor will also be expected to contribute to either the podcast or the article that the student is expected to produce at the end of the studentship (see below) and will be paid an honorarium of £500 GBP, payable at the end of the studentship. Mentors must read and abide by the mentor code of conduct guidelines [https://www.acu.ac.uk/funding-opportunities/for-students/fellowships/routledgeround-table-commonwealth-studentships/mentor-code-of-conduct-guidelines/].
Successful applicants will be required to submit, no more than twelve months after the take-up of the award, an article of between 4,000 and 6,000 words based on their research, for consideration for publication in the Round Table journal. Successful applicants will also be required to make a podcast on their research, for publication on the journal’s website.
Payment of the award
£4,000 GB will be paid on the announcement of the awards. The remaining £1,500 GBP will be paid upon completion of the post-studentship requirements.
How to apply
Applicants should download the Routledge/Round Table Studentship Awards application form, complete it, and return it to email@example.com no later than 17.00 BST on Friday 28 July 2023, accompanied by a current CV.
The application form asks you to:
- Summarise your proposed research topic for the Routledge/Round Table Studentship awards (100-400 words);
- Summarise your intended outcomes if you are successful in applying for an award (100-400 words);
- Summarise the likely impact of your research and why you think it is important (100-400 words); and
- Summarise how the award would benefit your research (100-400 words).
Your answers can either be typed into the form or sent as attachments.
The form asks for the name of your proposed mentor.
The form also asks for the names of two referees (one of whom should be your current Ph.D./DPhil supervisor). It is your responsibility to ask these referees for references. They may either send them to you for forwarding with the completed application, or they may send them to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than 17.00 BST on Friday 28 July 2023.
Deadline for applications: 17.00 BST on 28 July 2023
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