Collaborative Doctoral Awards – Studentships Available

The London Arts and Humanities Partnership is pleased to invite applications from outstanding candidates for AHRC LAHP Collaborative Doctoral Awards for 2020/21 entry.

Collaborative Doctoral Awards (CDAs) provide funding for doctoral students to work on a project in collaboration with an organisation outside higher education. They are intended to encourage and develop collaboration and partnerships and to provide opportunities for doctoral students to gain first-hand experience of work outside the university environment.  They enhance the employment-related skills and training available to the research student during the course of the award. Collaborative Doctoral Awards are not only a route into academia but also provide hands-on work experience in the cultural sector and transferrable skills.

The studentship includes a stipend at the Research Council UK Home/ EU rate (£17,009 per annum 2019/20 rates) plus fees for three and half years. The awarded candidate will also be entitled to a £550 per annum stipend top-up.  Studentships can be either full or part-time. As a LAHP student, the successful candidate will have full access to the LAHP Doctoral Training Partnership development activities and networking opportunities, joining a cohort of about 90 students per year.

Listed below are the Collaborative Doctoral Award projects that are currently recruiting across the LAHP partnership for October 2020 entry.
Some projects have an extended deadline of 22 March or 27 March for receipt of applications.

2020 Collaborative Doctoral Award Projects Recruiting

Queen Mary University London in collaboration with the British Library

Wasafiri_Issue 100 Front Cover

This project will explore the background and history of Wasafiri, a ‘little magazine’ known since the early 1980s for its pioneering role in providing a critical forum and platform for Britain’s black, Asian and minority ethnic writers. Drawing on unique archival sources, now housed in the British Library Contemporary Collections and not as yet publicly available, the particular history of this magazine will act as a paradigm to offer broader insights into the material conditions affecting the production, publication and reception of BAME writing in Britain from the fraught era of Thatcherism in the 1980s to the present. The project is particularly timely given the BL’s recent acquisition of the archive, the magazine’s celebration of 35 years of publishing and the scarcity of material currently available in tracking the history of this writing, including the early history of several now well-known figures, featured in the magazine long before they were to rise to national and global prominence. The prescience of the magazine’s mission in terms of its global vision and inclusive aim to diversify the canon will be illuminating in the context of postcolonial studies now and moves to decolonise the curriculum across the educational and publishing sectors.

The student will be based in the School of English and Drama, QMUL, where Wasafiri is currently housed, and will work collaboratively under the supervision of the Contemporary Archives team at the British Library. Interdisciplinary in scope, the doctoral research will involve collection of primary data and materials from the archive at the BL, and will draw on methodologies from postcolonial and global literary studies combined with book and magazine history, particularly the postcolonial history of the book and recent work on print/prize culture. Given the scale of the holdings, specific areas may take priority, such as: an examination of review culture across different periods; a study of how the magazine pioneered certain subject areas and approaches; or, an analysis of how the magazine’s changing with the times (e.g. the shift from the use of African, Caribbean and Associated Literatures as sub-title in the 1980s to contemporary international writing in the 2000s) also reflects cultural and theoretical shifts in the literary landscape. Choices will be determined with the student. The project will offer further professional experience through cataloguing a subset of the Wasafiri archive, with support and training from BL curators.
Interviews to be held on the 8th April.

For the full project description, please click here

Closing Date: 27 March 2020

King’s College London in collaboration with Shakespeare’s Globe

This project seeks an urgent revision of the critical study of the body in Shakespeare’s England and on the early modern stage by considering the relationship of race to the understanding of bodies in early modern culture and by assessing the value of a recuperation of early modern notions of the racial body for the analysis of contemporary performance of early modern drama. The thesis will advance the field by conducting research intersectionally, combining methodologies that might include, e.g., historical phenomenology, critical race theory and performance studies. It will examine race in relation to Shakespearean/early modern drama through a range of topics including, e.g., bodily systems, the relationship between dissection and the colonial enterprise, the performance of race on the early modern stage, black presence in Tudor/Stuart England, England’s role in the slave trade, cross-cultural encounters and the ways in which the theatre acknowledged and represented these encounters; and it will reassess contemporary theatrical choices in respect of race in light of this new knowledge.

The project’s objectives are as follows:

  • To reconsider the critical appraisal of early modern theories of the body and their application to Shakespearean and early modern drama in relation to questions of race and ethnicity
  • To develop a robust critical methodology for analysing the relationship between early modern dramatic culture and contemporary performance in respect of the representation of race
  • To examine the implications and impacts of non-traditional casting in contemporary performance at Shakespeare’s Globe and other theatres in light of knowledge gained from the analysis of the intersections of early modern somatic theory and issues of race and ethnicity.

We encourage applications from any candidate with appropriate qualifications (normally this will mean relevant high achievement at both BA and MA level); we would particularly welcome applications from candidates who identify as Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME).

For the full project description, please click here

Closing Date: 22 March 2020

Royal College of Art in collaboration with Tata Motors

This full-time funded Ph.D. studentship will explore and advance vehicle designs to meet the requirements of disabled, elderly and potentially marginalised users of shared autonomous transport systems, and investigate how supporting these users benefits the wider user population. Studies show that the early adopters of shared autonomous vehicles are likely to be these individuals as current transportation systems are not well equipped to support their needs, particularly in rural areas. Often public transport is not inclusive enough, door to door solutions are not well developed, and low-income users are unable to afford the customised personal mobility solutions. As implementation of autonomous transport systems accelerates, there is an opportunity for autonomous vehicles to increase the accessibility of public transport and reduce costs for marginalised populations by providing journey sharing, door to door pick-up and drop-off services and advanced journey scheduling. Inclusive design methods such as co-design, empathy, design anthropology and journey mapping will be key research approaches to observe, interpret and translate people’s needs into vehicle designs. The outputs of these studies will aim to benefit all vehicle users, making autonomous vehicle designs more widely available for the target populations and better for the entire travelling public.

This collaborative project between the Intelligent Mobility Design Centre (IMDC) at the Royal College of Art (RCA) and Tata Motors Design UK, will draw on the decades of Vehicle Design and Mobility Research (especially based on the findings of our GATEway project) of the RCA and Tata Motors’s design, manufacturing and engineering insights and pragmatic support. Primary and academic supervision will be provided by Dr. Jiayu Wu, Senior Research Fellow at the IMDC, a specialist in Mobility Experience Research and Design, Mobility Services and Inclusive Design Methods in academia and industry. Industrial supervision will be provided by Martin Uhlarik, Head of Design UK of Tata Motors, supplying feedback, market knowledge, and access to his team of more than fifty design and research staff for vehicle design and production insights. Additional supervision will be provided as necessary based on the student’s background, knowledge and skills, to help the student deliver this intensive project based practical research.

For the full project description, please click here

Closing Date: 22 March 2020

Royal College of Art in collaboration with Birth Rites Collection

This Collaborative Doctoral project is the first dedicated research platform across the fields of visual art & midwifery. It brings together the Royal College of Art and The Birth Rites Collection  to develop a broader discourse surrounding both childbirth and its performance as a transdisciplinary space.  

The Birth Rites Collection is a unique art collection hosted by the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care, King’s College London.  By framing and examining midwifery, birth and neonatal care through the lens of contemporary visual art, the project builds on discourses that bring together elements of medical practices, historical narratives of birth, the caring professions, fine and applied art practices including curating. 

Viewing Tereze, 2016, Courtesy Birth Rites Collection

The focus of the project is to understand ways in which local engagement with the collection by student midwives, art students, medical students, research academics, independent midwives and doulas can inform ways of deploying the art works that contribute to Feminist critique, new curatorial strategies and/or the creation of  pedagogic tool kits for both art and midwifery education. The collection lends itself to exhibitions, public tours and conference presentations, but holds the potential for more experimental outputs such as public performances, online archival interventions and collaborative stimuli including a dedicated publication.  

The successful researcher is envisaged to be in the field of arts practices which may include writing and curating.  They will be based at the RCA and have access to the Birth Rites Collection, its archive and user groups. They will be jointly supervised by Hermione Wiltshire, Senior Tutor in Photography, Royal College of Art and Jane Sandall, Professor of Social Science and Women’s Health, King’s College London and further mentoring/advising by Helen Knowles, BRC’s Curator and Elsa Montgomery, Senior Lecturer, Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care.

For the full project description, please click here

Closing Date: 22 March 2020

Royal College of Music in collaboration with the Natural Voice Network

photo credit Nick Landells

This Collaborative Doctoral Award (CDA) project will develop a comprehensive understanding of the cultural value of the Natural Voice Network (NVN), a UK national singing network (Natural Voice Network, n.d.). It will consist of multiple iterative cycles of action research across 3 strands of inquiry:

  1. Content analysis of the NVN’s historical contribution to peer-reviewed knowledge of cultural value (Months 1-12);
  2. Collaborative inquiry with stakeholders using Participatory Action Research (PAR) (Chevalier and Buckles, 2013) methods to build a phenomenological understanding of Natural Voice group singing as it is experienced by its stakeholders (Months 7-24);
  3. Creating case studies of good practice to illustrate the findings of the research and inform future practice (Months 12-30).

The project aims to analyse the impact and contribution of the NVN as a complex ‘grass roots’ UK network of singing practitioners, by addressing the following research questions:

  1. How can the cultural value of the UK Natural Voice Network best be understood and articulated?
  2. How does a phenomenological understanding of group singing enhance or complement a more scientific perspective?
  3. How can any effective practices of the NVN be disseminated more broadly, to advance a more comprehensive and practical understanding of the efficacy of group singing for the development of ‘healthy publics’ (Camlin et al., forthcoming; Hinchliffe et al., 2018) across a broad population?

For the full project description, please click here

Closing Date: 1 March 2020

King’s College London in collaboration with Serpentine Galleries

This PhD scholarship is linked to the Creative AI Lab, a collaborative research effort between the Serpentine Galleries’ Research & Development Platform and the Digital Humanities Department, King’s College London. The lab advances trans-disciplinary understandings of AI [artificial intelligence] and ML [machine learning] in the context of arts and technology collaborations, developing new tools for curatorial knowledge-sharing and artistic applications. This spans understanding/mapping creative applications of AI and ML as a new creative medium, as well as identifying/closing knowledge gaps when commissioning such works.

Ian Cheng Serpentine Gallery installation view BOB ©2018 Hugo Glendinning. Courtesy of the artist and Serpentine Galleries.

Art institutions play a crucial role in opening up the black box that currently is AI. They are places for exploring and reflecting on the societal impact of a technology for which a critical but also creative response is urgently needed. Furthermore, public exhibitions about AI as well as contemporary media and technology studies into AI make use of art works to show the critical potential of this new media. As the cultural sector has been slow to acquire adequate media literacy around the disruptive medium that is ‘creative AI’ (creative applications of AI and ML), aspects of best curatorial practice regarding this response are to be researched in this PhD. 

The focus of the project is to study the role of this new medium in art with particular attention to the challenges and opportunities it creates for art institutions by transforming curatorial approaches and facilitating interdisciplinary collaborations between technical producers, artists and curators. The interviews for the studentship will be on 17 and 18 March.

For more information about the project’s scope and criteria click here. https://blogs.kcl.ac.uk/ddh/2020/01/24/call-for-phd-scholarship-applications-linked-to-creative-ai-as-a-medium-in-artistic-and-curatorial-practice/

For the full project description, please click here

Closing Date: 1 March 2020

Queen Mary University London in collaboration with the Museum of London

© Jorge Royan / http://www.royan.com.ar / CC BY-SA 3.0

The end of meat is coming, so say various Extinction Rebellion posters around London. In Smithfield, at the heart of The City, this is undeniably the case as the UK’s largest and longest-running wholesale market edges towards permanent closure. The western end of the so-called ‘Cathedral of Meat’ is being transformed to make space for a new Museum of London while market traders face relocation to the urban fringe. Time is running out and there is a vital history to be written. Smithfield Market is a unique and legendary place: a throwback to a disappearing London. It is a male dominated workplace where jobs still pass from father to son, and women are marginalised by a meaty masculine culture. And yet, the market endured in the post-war era by evolving with the city. It weathered the decline of high street butchers and the rise of supermarkets by supplying large numbers of kebab and chicken shops, accommodating religious preferences around meat, catering to changing demographics and cultural tastes, and upgrading in the 1990s to comply with EU standards.

This collaborative project involves a partnership between the School of Geography at Queen Mary University and the Museum of London. The successful applicant will work between the two partners conducting research that will capture the recent history of Smithfield Market before it literally becomes a museum. Using archival material and oral history, it will document the livelihoods and culinary cultures it supported, using the site to understand wider transformations in London’s past and future. The student will be based at QMUL in the School of Geography, but will also benefit from the training opportunities, research and curatorial expertise of the Museum. Anticipated outcomes from the project include not only the PhD thesis, but contributions to the teaching, research and display activities of the new Museum of London.

For the full project description, please click here

Closing Date: 1 March 2020

How to Apply

Applicants must meet the must meet the eligibility and residency criteria.

Residency requirements
LAHP studentships are open to UK and EU students who meet the residency requirements as detailed on page 11 of the RCUK Conditions of Research Council Training Grants. Applications cannot be accepted from students liable to pay fees at the Overseas rate.

Please note: Subject to HEI approval, LAHP has a limited number of full awards (fees and stipend) for EU students designated `fees-only’ by the AHRC.

Applicants should have a good undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline, and a Masters-level qualification or equivalent which meets AHRC requirements for research training. Applicants with relevant work/professional experience who are considering doing a PhD are also encouraged to apply.

To apply please send:

All application documents should be submitted in one email as attachments. These items must be submitted to info.lahp@london.ac.uk by the closing date indicated in the project tab.