Widening Participation

The WGSSS welcomes applications for our postgraduate studentships from excellent candidates of all backgrounds. Widening participation in research on the social sciences is a priority for us.  

We are happy to advise potential students on what’s involved in doctoral research, the opportunities and challenges of completing research training and a thesis over three or four years. In this short video (9 min) current students Henna Nisa and Laura Shobiye share some of their own experiences as WGSSS researchers and discuss our work on widening participation with WGSSS Director Professor John Harrington.  

The WGSSS recognizes that structural inequality and injustice has resulted in underrepresentation of certain ethnic and racial communities in academia.  We are taking action to increase recruitment to our doctoral awards, to improve student experience and training, and to encourage doctoral research on the needs and achievements of all communities. Our strategy is devised and monitored by our expert EDI Working Group and led by the WGSSS Director. 

Our 15 subject pathways will consider the candidates’ educational and life achievements fully. Historical structural inequalities in education have resulted in underrepresentation of certain racial and ethnic communities in academia.  The WGSSS has taken action to begin addressing these issues through an initiative permitting pathways within the WGSSS to put forward up to four studentship nominations rather than three in its general studentship competition, provided that at least one of those applicants is of Black British, Asian British, minority ethnicity British or mixed race British background. 

You will find full information on WGSSS studentships, eligibility and how to apply on our studentships page. 

We are promoting this initiative and encouraging applications through our network of university partners, student societies, community groups and friendly academics. We welcome inquiries from them and from potential applicants through Twitter or email.