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The University of Southampton
Economic, Social and Political Sciences

New partnership to widen access for postgraduate funding and research

Published: 4 August 2016

Postgraduate research and training across the UK’s South Coast has received a major boost with the announcement of a major new Doctoral Training Partnership by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).

The new South Coast Doctoral Training Partnership (SCDTP), commencing in September 2017, will build on the success of the University of Southampton’s ESRC Doctoral Training Centre (DTC) with its significant track record of fostering interdisciplinarity, excellence in advanced research methods and collaboration with key stakeholders. The DTP draws together Southampton’s excellent research training infrastructure with the REF2014-recognised social science expertise of its neighbouring universities in Brighton and Portsmouth.

Together, it is anticipated this partnership will significantly enhance postgraduate training across the region through a distinctive combination of broad expertise in the social sciences, community engagement and research impact, and a strong track record of widening participation.

The DTP replaces Southampton’s current Doctoral Training Centre which has successfully supported PhD students since 2011. The Partnership will welcome six new cohorts of PhD students from 2017 to 2022 across a wide range of disciplines including Criminology, Economics, Psychology, Health and Wellbeing, Linguistics and Social Statistics. Students will be members of innovative interdisciplinary training pathways, gaining expertise in their subject area while ensuring that their analytical, research and communication skills can be applied within interdisciplinary teams in order to deal with the global challenges of the future.

“We’re pleased that Southampton will host this new Doctoral Training Partnership, working closely with colleagues in Brighton and Portsmouth, following our successful response to the ESRC agenda to extend postgraduate research training to new partners,” said Professor Graham Moon , Associate Dean Research for Social, Human and Mathematical Sciences at the University of Southampton. “The Partnership builds upon the track record of our ESRC Doctoral Training Centre and draws upon our ESRC-recognised leading status as a centre for excellence in quantitative methods and the secondary analysis of large data sets as the new DTP will involve all of the ESRC disciplines at Southampton.”

Professor Neil Ravenscroft, Director of the University of Brighton’s Doctoral College said: “This latest Doctoral Training Partnership is great news for the University of Brighton and a tangible recognition of our excellent social science research. We look forward to working with our partners at the Universities of Southampton and Portsmouth over the coming years to develop what promises to be a rich and diverse programme.”

Professor Liz Twigg at the University of Portsmouth added: “The award of an ESRC DTP is very exciting news for the University of Portsmouth and particularly for our research in Area Studies and in Psychology. It represents a major recognition our excellence in the social sciences. We are very pleased to be collaborating with Southampton and Brighton and look forward to taking the DTP forward.”

The ESRC’s new Doctoral Training Network will consist of 14 Doctoral Training Partnerships and two Centres for Doctoral Training. The Network is aimed at widening access for postgraduates to Council funding and the highest quality training in the social sciences across the UK to provide future skills in the human and social sciences.

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