Collaborative Doctoral Awards – Projects available

Applications from prospective students for the LAHP Collaborative Doctoral Awards projects starting in October 2022 are now closed.

CDA projects with no nominated students for start in October 2023 will be advertised in late November 2022. Below you can see the CDA projects and application process for October 2022 start.

2022/23 Collaborative Doctoral Award Projects Recruiting

The London Arts & Humanities Partnership currently has the following six exciting collaborative doctoral awards open for applications now:

  • Disability and the Home: Space, Domesticity, and Identity in London, 1840-1945

    Collaborative Doctoral Award in collaboration with Queen Mary University of London and the Museum of the Home

    Primary academic supervisor: Matthew Rubery
    Secondary academic supervisor: Alison Blunt
    Collaborative Partner lead contact: Danielle Patten
    Collaborative Partner supervisor: Rebecca Jacobs

    This project will study the urban history of disability at home in London from 1840-1945. Based at the Centre for Studies of Home, a partnership between Queen Mary and the Museum of the Home, it will be the first research project to analyse the museum’s collections in relation to disability. The research will make an original contribution to broader debates about home, housing, disability and the city through its analysis of the lived experience and spatial politics of home for people living with physical and cognitive disabilities in the century before the founding of the National Health Service. The project will recover the ways in which home and domesticity were experienced by people with various kinds of physical and cognitive disabilities. It will also chart how the experiences of living with disabilities at home were shaped by broader forces including urbanization, industrialization, and nationalism as well as ideologies such as self-help and the eugenics movement. The proposed research will focus on the lives of people with disabilities in urban domestic settings; diversify knowledge about urban homes and domestic life beyond able-bodied, middle-class lives; and establish how attitudes toward the accommodation of disability have evolved in the UK.

    For queries specific to the project, please contact the project supervisor Matthew Rubery on

  • Performance-based co-creation with young people as political activism: contextualising and disseminating the work of Fevered Sleep

    Collaborative Doctoral Award in collaboration with Queen Mary University of London and Fevered Sleep

    Primary academic supervisor: Kiera Vaclavik
    Secondary academic supervisor: Maggie Inchley
    Collaborative Partner lead contact: Louisa Borg-Costanzi Potts

    Photo credit: Ana Escobar

    This project explores the ways in which intergenerational co-production of performance-based works and their preservation can help overcome the marginalisation of children and young people, formulate their worldviews, and shape their political activism. It takes as its focal point three key productions by the widely acclaimed company Fevered Sleep whose pioneering work is part of a long, if poorly documented and under-theorised history of co-creation with young people as a form of political activism in the UK. The project charts the evolution of the organisation’s work with young people and situates it within those little-known or unacknowledged histories. Drawing on performance and cultural studies, sociology and childhood studies, and innovatively building bridges between those fields, it will excavate, explore and disseminate practices which enable children to be more effectively seen and heard. Children and young people will be engaged throughout the project lifecycle, as interviewees and audiences directly shaping research outputs and as contributors on an equal footing to adults in events and workshops. The project facilitates exchange between creative practitioners and researchers concerning co-creation with young people and enables Fevered Sleep to archive and present their working methods to the wider public, articulate their distinctive contribution and disseminate best-practice.

    For queries specific to the project, please contact project supervisor Kiera Vaclavik on

  • Overcoming Barriers: The Impact of Arts Council Policy on the Careers of Black British Women in the Subsidised Dance Sector

    Collaborative Doctoral Award in collaboration with Royal Central School of Speech and Drama and Serendipity

    Primary academic supervisor: Kate Elswit
    Secondary academic supervisor: Tia Monique Uzor
    Collaborative Partner lead contact: Pawlet Brookes

    Jamila Johnson-Small and Alexandrina Hemsley; photo credit: Katarzyna Perlak

    This Collaborative Doctoral project between Central and Serendipity produces the first comprehensive study of the impact of Arts Council policy on the careers of Black women in the subsidised dance sector from 1985–2020. While Arts Council funding is often used as background context in studies of Black British dance, the project both develops a systematic overview and presents 15 case studies of Black women dance artists that engage the entanglements between performance and cultural power. Plotting the artistic outcomes and career trajectories of Black women against key Arts Council policy and reports will enable the student to critically interrogate the impact of intersectional oppression within dance historically and its legacies today. Thus, the project will generate alternative historical narratives of women who have been overlooked by British Dance. Working with the project partner Serendipity, the research will develop educational resources for dance students and audiences, and policy recommendations that will be published and presented to the Arts Council. The studentship will bring cultural industry, Arts policy and critical theory into dialogue and will enable the project partner Serendipity to better advocate for the next generation of arts funding for Black British women.

    For queries specific to the project, please contact project supervisor Kate Elswit on

  • The working-class museum: exploring the lived experiences of 21st century working-class Londoners

    Collaborative Doctoral Award in collaboration with King’s College London and Museum of London

    Primary academic supervisor: Serena Iervolino
    Secondary academic supervisor: Hye-Kyung Lee
    Collaborative Partner lead contact: Domenico Sergi

    A New Museum for London in West Smithfiled – Artistic impression of the subterranean spaces beneath the General Market © Museum of London / Sacchi Smith

    UK museums have historically neglected large parts of British society by showing little interest in the stories and experiences of working-class people. Issues of class differences have been rarely foregrounded in museum displays and public programmes. This is despite many UK museums holding relevant social and working history collections. In a time of deep systemic crisis marked by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has further aggravated class divisions entrenched in British society, socio-economic differences need to be urgently addressed in UK museums and academic debates. This PhD project aims to examine how socio-economic differences and working-class experiences can be meaningfully addressed in UK museums. Using the Museum of London and, more broadly, the city of London as a case study, this project will look at the analytic category “working class” through the lived experiences of low-paid Londoners. The project will implement innovative research methods (e.g. auto-ethnographic and arts based methods) to record and document the lived experiences of working-class Londoners. It will also test the use of collaborative methodologies in research practice (e.g. community conversations). Finally, the project will seek to foster sector-wide debates on the research subject through engaging museum professionals, activists and subject specialists in dissemination and engagement activities.

    Additional information:

    • A demonstrable interest in the issue of working class identity and history will be essential.
    • Applications from individuals with either expertise or lived experience in relation to working class identity and its history are strongly encouraged and will be particularly welcomed.
    • Applicants may come from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds, including (but not limited to) museum studies, arts management, cultural studies, history, sociology and political economy.
    • The ideal candidate might lack relevant academic and professional museum training, which CMCI and the Museum of London can confidently provide.
    • Training on innovative research methodologies such as arts-based tools, social media journaling and auto-ethnography will be provided, as required.

    For queries specific to the project, please contact the project’s supervisors: Dr Serena Iervolino ( and Dr Domenico Sergi (

  • ‘A musical feast for the Mile Enders’? Music, social inclusion and community engagement in London’s East End, c.1890 to the present

    Collaborative Doctoral Award in collaboration with Queen Mary University of London and Spitafield Music

    Primary academic supervisor: Alastair Owens
    Secondary academic supervisor: Paul Edlin
    Collaborative Partner lead contact: Sarah Gee

    Photo credit: Spitalfields Music

    This project traces the way that music has been used to engage local communities and tackle social marginalisation in London’s East End since the late 19th century. Musical outreach and community participation have come to be recognised as effective means for engaging with populations at risk of exclusion. But these present-day activities have a longer history.
    Using East London as an (illuminating) example, this project aims to track the different ways that music has been used to enrich and improve a people’s lives, from late-Victorian ‘civilizing missions’ and programmes of ‘moral reform’, through twentieth-century initiatives to nurture a nationally-significant concert culture for ‘deserving’ and appreciative cockneys, to radical contemporary interventions that seek to tackle social injustice, community fragmentation and give voice to marginalised groups. Alongside producing an original and timely thesis, the student will work with Spitalfields Music to produce a small online exhibition based on the research, organise a ‘London Festival of Music and Community Engagement’ at Queen Mary University of London, and work with both organisations to develop understanding of how best to evaluate musical outreach programmes – a key concern as the charity emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic and
    approaches its 50th anniversary.

    For queries specific to the project, please contact project supervisor Alastair Owens on

  • A study of diversity and music-making in early childhood: Towards inclusive research and practice

    Collaborative Doctoral Award in collaboration with Royal College of Music and MERYC England Music Educators and Researchers of Young Children

    Primary academic supervisor: Jessica Pitt
    Secondary academic supervisor: Mary Stakelum
    Collaborative Partner lead contact: Alison Street

    Photo credit: MERYC England

    This collaborative award focuses on music in early childhood, which although acknowledged as the most formative period of human growth and development (OECD, 2017) remains under-represented in research and scholarship (Young, 2018)and falls outside the remit of the government’s statutory framework for music education (see DfE, 2011). This project partnership of the RCM lead supervisor and MERYC England developed from a shared concern to address this gap in knowledge (see for example Pitt, Arculus, & Haynes, 2017) and to foster collaboration between music practice and research that respects and values cultural diversity of this younger population (see MERYC England aims in case for support).Using MERYC England’s materials the student will compile a cultural history of early childhood music education (ECME),charting conceptions of inclusion, and testing the extent to which these resonate with stakeholders (children, care givers and early childhood professionals) and identifying new directions in music research and practice.

    National charity, MERYC England (Music Educators and Researchers of Young Children) aims to articulate high quality inclusive EC music practices with an emphasis on research and practice that recognises social and cultural diversity of early childhood in England making them an ideal partner for this CDA.

    For queries specific to the project, please contact project supervisor Jessica Pitt on

2022/23 Collaborative Doctoral Award Applications


The list of CDA studentships funded by LAHP since 2018 is available here

Our Collaborative Doctoral Award Case Studies are available here

Back to the top