Summary

Recent years have seen increasing levels of immigration to Northern Ireland. This development has raised issues about how gender, race and migrant poverty intersect in the region. The current suite of social inclusion strategies being developed by the Dept for Communities includes gender and anti-poverty but the race strategy sits apart from the social inclusion ones. There is some evidence from NGOs that current policies, with regard to access to services, public funds and the labour market may exacerbate the problems faced by migrants.

However, as the recent report from the Migrant and Minority Ethnic Council revealed, there has been very little research into any aspect of migrant life in the region.

Therefore, we welcome proposals for empirical studies that contribute to knowledge and understanding in the area of migration with a particular focus on gender.  We are open to proposals which focus on the following areas (although this list is not exhaustive), which are conceptually informed and methodologically innovative:

  1. Personal experiences of policy issues that exacerbate poverty or gender issues among individuals who have migrated to NI;
  2. Personal experience of intersections of migration, gender, disability or other issues and poverty
  3. Comparative work which assesses how intersections of gender, race, migration and poverty impact on families in NI compared to other areas of the UK or other countries.

Essential criteria

Applicants should hold, or expect to obtain, a First or Upper Second Class Honours Degree in a subject relevant to the proposed area of study.

We may also consider applications from those who hold equivalent qualifications, for example, a Lower Second Class Honours Degree plus a Master’s Degree with Distinction.

In exceptional circumstances, the University may consider a portfolio of evidence from applicants who have appropriate professional experience which is equivalent to the learning outcomes of an Honours degree in lieu of academic qualifications.


Desirable Criteria

If the University receives a large number of applicants for the project, the following desirable criteria may be applied to shortlist applicants for interview.

  • Masters at 65%

Funding and eligibility

The University offers the following levels of support:

Vice Chancellors Research Studentship (VCRS)

Full award (full-time PhD fees + DfE level of maintenance grant + RTSG for 3 years).

This scholarship will cover full-time PhD tuition fees and provide the recipient with £15,840 (tbc) maintenance grant per annum for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.

Applicants who already hold a doctoral degree or who have been registered on a programme of research leading to the award of a doctoral degree on a full-time basis for more than one year (or part-time equivalent) are NOT eligible to apply for an award.

Vice-Chancellor’s Research Bursary (VCRB)

Part award (full-time PhD fees + 50% DfE level of maintenance grant + RTSG for 3 years).

This scholarship will cover full-time PhD tuition fees and provide the recipient with £8,000 maintenance grant per annum for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.

Applicants who already hold a doctoral degree or who have been registered on a programme of research leading to the award of a doctoral degree on a full-time basis for more than one year (or part-time equivalent) are NOT eligible to apply for an award.

Vice-Chancellor’s Research Fees Bursary (VCRFB)

Fees only award (PhD fees + RTSG for 3 years).

This scholarship will cover full-time PhD tuition fees for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.

Applicants who already hold a doctoral degree or who have been registered on a programme of research leading to the award of a doctoral degree on a full-time basis for more than one year (or part-time equivalent) are NOT eligible to apply for an award.

Department for the Economy (DFE)

The scholarship will cover tuition fees at the Home rate and a maintenance allowance of £15,840 (tbc) per annum for three years (subject to satisfactory academic performance). This scholarship also comes with £900 per annum for three years as a research training support grant (RTSG) allocation to help support the PhD researcher.

  • Candidates with pre-settled or settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, who also satisfy a three year residency requirement in the UK prior to the start of the course for which a Studentship is held MAY receive a Studentship covering fees and maintenance.
  • Republic of Ireland (ROI) nationals who satisfy three years’ residency in the UK prior to the start of the course MAY receive a Studentship covering fees and maintenance (ROI nationals don’t need to have pre-settled or settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme to qualify).
  • Other non-ROI EU applicants are ‘International’ are not eligible for this source of funding.
  • Applicants who already hold a doctoral degree or who have been registered on a programme of research leading to the award of a doctoral degree on a full-time basis for more than one year (or part-time equivalent) are NOT eligible to apply for an award.

Due consideration should be given to financing your studies. Further information on cost of living


Recommended reading

Hiranthi, J. 2018, "Access to healthcare for vulnerable migrant women in England: A human security approach", Current Sociology, vol. 66, no. 2, pp. 273-285.

Jolly, A. 2018, "No Recourse to Social Work? Statutory Neglect, Social Exclusion and Undocumented Migrant Families in the UK", Social Inclusion, vol. 6, no. 3, pp. 190-200.

Lubit, A. & Belluigi, D. Z. 2021. Collation and Mapping of Research related to Migrant and Minority Ethnic Matters in Northern Ireland produced within Northern Ireland’s Universities. A report prepared for The MME Council, Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Mitton, L. 2021, "The Newly-Recognised Refugees Most at Risk of Homelessness in England", Journal of social policy, vol. 50, no. 1, pp. 59-78.

Morris, L. 2019, "Reconfiguring Rights in Austerity Britain: Boundaries, Behaviours and Contestable Margins", Journal of social policy, vol. 48, no. 2, pp. 271-291

Pearson, R. 2019, "A feminist analysis of neoliberalism and austerity policies in the UK", Soundings, , no. 71, pp. 28.


The Doctoral College at Ulster University