ESRC announces new cohort of doctoral training partnerships

By 7th November 2023 No Comments

The White Rose Doctoral Training Partnership is delighted to announce that we have been recommissioned by the Economic and Social Research Council for a further five studentship intakes from October 2024.

The White Rose Doctoral Training Partnership (WRDTP) is an established partnership of the universities of Leeds, Sheffield, York, Bradford, Hull, Manchester Metropolitan and Sheffield Hallam, who have been working together since 2017 to deliver cutting edge social science training to postgraduate researchers. As a partnership we are committed to equality, diversity and inclusion; interdisciplinarity; academic rigour and excellence; and collaboration.

We are delighted that the WRDTP has been recommissioned by the ESRC for a further five years. This is a significant investment, and one that sends a clear message about the importance of the postgraduate research community and the WRDTP’s proven track-record in supporting postgraduate researchers to realise their academic and professional aspirations.

Together with the generous match-funding pledged by our partner universities, we will continue to offer a range of fully-funded studentship opportunities each year, as well as an extensive programme of postgraduate training and development.

Professor Felicity MatthewsDirector of the White Rose Doctoral Training Partnership

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) is to invest in 15 doctoral training partnerships spanning 89 institutions over the next five years.  

Following ESRC’s response to the Review of PhD in the Social Sciences in 2021, a revised vision for postgraduate training is now being implemented. 

Doctoral Training Partnerships  

ESRC will fund 15 Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTP) across the whole of the UK.  They will cover the breadth of social sciences, as well as areas of interdisciplinary research.  The awards started in October 2023 to allow DTPs to further develop a programme of flexible training opportunities, and a suite of research in practice opportunities, tailored to the needs of individual students.   

Five years of PhD studentship intake will begin in October 2024. The aim is to continue to support 500 students a year.

Enhanced training provision 

The new DTPs demonstrate ESRC’s commitment to its revised vision for doctoral training, that reflects the findings of the Review.  This includes: 

  •  adopting a more bespoke student-centered approach to the content and delivery of training
  • increasing the PhD duration from 3 to 3.5 years to incorporate a 3-month placement and additional training 
  • introducing Research in Practice as a core component to ensure that students have the skills fundamental to both academic and non-academic career pathways 
  • embedding equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) principles at all levels  
  • ensuring innovation in core training content and delivery, particularly in relation to data management, digital skills and the skills to analyse large and complex data.  
  • strengthening supervisory guidance and professional development opportunities for supervisors 

“Our vision for postgraduate training is that it will develop globally competitive social science researchers who can operate in interdisciplinary, collaborative, and challenge-led environments across a range of sectors and who have a diversity of backgrounds and experiences.

This redesigned and expanded doctoral training opportunity will enhance the experience for PhD students and boost the UK’s capability.”

Stian WestlakeExecutive Chair, ESRC

Investments in doctoral training partnerships (DTPs) are an important component of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and ESRC’s overarching vision to develop research talent and skills.  

These investments will provide a breadth of professional development training opportunities to enhance the capabilities of doctoral candidates and further develop a world-class, highly skilled workforce for the UK.