Postgraduate research

Future 50 PhD Scholarships - Research Institutes

Qualification: PhD

Application deadline: Applications are closed for 2023 entry

Start date: 25 September 2023


Applications are now closed for 2023 entry

The University of Leicester is investing £5.45m in 50 Doctoral Scholarships for entry in autumn 2023 as part of its ambition to deliver on its strategic aim to ‘nurture the next generation of researchers to become world-leaders in their field’. 16 scholarships will be distributed through the Leicester Research Institutes.

Below you will find a list of project proposals from our Research Institutes. Please be aware that not all of the proposed projects will be funded; however, it is possible to apply for up to two projects.

Prospective applicants are welcome to contact potential supervisor(s) for further information and guidance about specific projects

Select the project/s you want to apply for refer to the How to Apply guidelines in the section below. When listing the project you want to be considered for include the project reference as well as the project title.  For Example: RI LISCB Fox Unravelling the dynamics of BAK oligomerisation in apoptotic cell death

Leicester Institute of Structural and Chemical Biology (LISCB)

The Leicester Institute of Structural and Chemical Biology brings together established strengths in structural biology, chemical biology and single-molecule research. LISCB’s research activities are organised under four strands: structural biology and functional analyses of large complexes; structure-based drug discovery and design; single molecule studies of complex, dynamic biological systems; chemical biology. Three out of the 6 advertised projects will be funded.

Institute for Digital Culture

The Institute allies with the culture sector to help it adapt to a digital world – harnessing the university’s existing and emerging strengths in the areas of digital humanities, digital heritage, media studies, creative computing and data science. The institutes activities are organised under four research themes, that together speak to how the culture and heritage sectors use, manage, create and understand ‘digital’: creative and cultural technologies (for visitor, audience and community engagement); digital leadership (strategy and skills for tomorrow’s cultural and creative organisations); digital design (technologies to enable and empower people in all their diversity); cultural informatics (big data mapping, modelling and simulation for digital heritage and culture).  All three projects to be funded.

Institute for Environmental Futures

The Institute will conduct an ambitious and transformative interdisciplinary research programme by developing our critical understandings of human-environment systems. We will establish pathways to resilient, sustainable, and just environmental futures in the context of the global challenges of a climate emergency, habitat loss, disaster risk, species extinction, environmental degradation, pollution, population growth, emerging and changing health issues, and rapid socio-economic change. The Institute will be transdisciplinary and place the co-development and co-delivery of its research and enterprise with local communities, businesses, governmental and non-governmental organisations, and activists at its heart. All three projects will be funded.

Institute for Precision Health

The Institute for Precision Health is a joint venture between the University and University Hospitals of Leicester. Our vision is to enhance Leicester’s reputation as an international centre of excellence in precision health, uncovering disease mechanisms, developing novel diagnostics and therapies and translating them for patient and societal benefit. All three of the advertised projects will be funded. 

Space Park Leicester Institute of Research and Innovation

The expansion and diversification of the global space sector present a favourable opportunity for the University of Leicester to grow its already significant leadership role in the space sector. With Space Park Leicester becoming fully operational in 2022, the establishment of Space Park Leicester Institute of Research and Innovation is enabling the University of Leicester to play a central and disruptive role in the space sector. Innovation will be driven by fostering collaboration with academic, industry partners and stakeholders in the evolving UK space landscape. All three projects will be funded.



Studentships provide funding for 3.5 years to include: 

  • Tuition fees at UK rate 
  • Stipend at UKRI rates for 2023 to be confirmed in early 2023 (currently £17,668 for 2022 entry)
  • Access to a Research Training Support Grant of up to £1,500 pa for 3 years
  • Bench fees of £5,000 per annum for three years for laboratory-based studies.
International applicants will need to be able to fund the difference between UK and International fees for the duration of study. For projects on this page the fees will be:

Full international fees will vary depending on the project

  • UK fees are yet to be confirmed, but are likely to be between £4,600 and £4,700 per year
  • International fees for projects based in Life Sciences and Science and Engineering will be £21,850 per year. International students would need to be able to pay fees of approximately £17,200 per year of study. Exact fee will be advised at the point of offer
  • International fees for projects based in Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities will be £16,200 per year. International students would need to be able to pay fees of approximately £11,500 per year of study. Exact fee will be advised at the point of offer.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Applicants are required to hold/or expect to obtain a UK Bachelor Degree 2:1 or better in a relevant subject or overseas equivalent.

The University of Leicester English language requirements may apply.

Informal enquiries

Informal enquiries

Informal project enquiries

Please email the relevant project supervisor.

Application enquiries

How to apply

How to apply

To apply, please use the Apply button at the bottom of the page for projects listed on this page and follow the prompts to create your application.

With your application, please include:

  • CV
  • Personal statement explaining, briefly, your interest in the project and your relevant experience ( If you apply for two projects include a statement for each project on the same document)
  • Degree Certificates and Transcripts of study already completed and if possible transcript to date of study currently being undertaken
  • Evidence of English language proficiency, if applicable
  • In the reference section please enter the contact details of your two academic referees in the boxes provided or upload letters of reference if already available.

You can apply for a maximum of 2 projects. 

For each project you want to be considered for:

  • In the Supervisor Section: Enter the Project Supervisor for each project you want to be considered for 
  • In the Project Title Section: Enter the Project Reference and Project Title for each project in order of priority 
    (For example: Project 1: RI DC Cossu Art and the Blockchain: a post-cryptographic future for the culture sector?   Project 2: RI EF Williams A resilience index for Earth-type biospheres)

In the Funding Section enter Future 50 Scholarship or select Future 50 Scholarship from the drop down menu.

Incomplete applications will not be considered.



UK and International* applicants are welcome to apply.

To be classed as UK applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a UK National (meeting residency requirements), or
  • Have EU settled status, or
  • Have EU pre-settled status (meeting 3 years residency requirement) or,
  • Have indefinite leave to remain or enter

If you are unsure if you are eligible for UK fees please email and we can make an assessment for you.

Applicants holding EU settled or pre-settled status

Once you have submitted your application please email a share code starting with S to so that we can verify your status. Include your application number.

*International applicants

  • Applicants who do not meet the criteria for UK fees will be classed as an international student.
  • International students will need to be able to fund the difference between UK and International fees for the duration of study. See the funding section for more details.

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