Scottish universities supporting the arts & humanities doctoral training

Published: 15 October 2013

A new Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) to support postgraduate studentships and training in the arts and humanities in Scotland has secured funding of £14.2 million.

A new Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) to support postgraduate studentships and training in the arts and humanities in Scotland has secured funding of £14.2 million.

The money has been granted by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to a consortium of Scottish Universities being led by Glasgow, and comprising Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow School of Art, St Andrews, Stirling and Strathclyde universities.

This success has been reinforced by the commitment of up to £1.8 million from the Scottish Funding Council to support the establishment of a Scottish Graduate School for Arts & Humanities (SGSAH).

The culmination of more than two years of cooperative working between the partners, the DTP will offer doctoral studentships and training across the full range of the AHRC’s disciplines – with around 200 funded studentships over the next five years.

The scheme will be managed by the newly-created SGSAH, which will be administered from the University of Glasgow, but with shared governance across all partner institutions.

Speaking on behalf of the consortium, Professor Murray Pittock, Vice Principal and Head of the College of Arts at the University of Glasgow, said: “The establishment of the SGSAH represents a departure from existing models of postgraduate research education.
“It is a potentially transformative step in changing the landscape of Arts & Humanities doctoral provision in Scotland, and allows strategic decisions affecting Scottish postgraduate education to be made in Scotland.”

The status of the SGSAH as a national organisation, involving a range of Scottish Higher Education Institutions, will provide the framework for the development of more coherent, strategic and sustainable partnerships with organisations from across the creative, cultural and heritage sectors.

There are more than 30 organisations supporting this work, ranging from the National Galleries Scotland, to the Royal Society of Edinburgh, to Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, to Dundee Repertory Theatre.

Prof Pittock added: “The SGSAH will develop doctoral researchers across Scotland who not only recognise the value of arts & humanities research but who have the skills, experience, aspiration and confidence to apply that research in addressing issues of economic, social and cultural importance.”

The Doctoral Training Partnership will be open for applications from early 2014 for PhD entry to the consortium’s institutions in October 2014.

The University of Glasgow is also the co-ordinating institution for a UK-wide Centre for Doctoral Training which will lead a Doctoral Training Programme in Celtic Languages, involving a consortium of twelve institutions.

Glasgow will administer the new Centre, in collaboration with Bangor University, Queen’s University Belfast, Swansea University, the Universities of Aberdeen, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Oxford, Ulster, the University of the Highlands and Islands, the University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies, and the University of Wales Trinity Saint David.

The AHRC has awarded the consortium £1.85 million over five years to support doctoral students across the range of the Celtic Languages, whose innovative training programme will be supported by its core partners Bòrd na Gàidhlig, BBC Northern Ireland, and the National Library of Wales.

The Centre for Doctoral Training will offer training, skills and capacity building in specific disciplinary areas which are AHRC current priorities and enable a strategic vision of postgraduate education in Celtic languages to develop across all the countries of the UK.

Professor Rick Rylance, Chief Executive of the AHRC, said: “This is an important step forward in delivering the best possible training and support for postgraduate students in the arts and humanities, and in developing a collaborative approach which pools expertise and expands horizons for postgraduate researchers.

“We are delighted at how the sector and partners beyond the sector have responded, and we look forward to working closely with them to support the next generation.”

For more information contact Stuart Forsyth in the University of Glasgow Media Relations Office on 0141 330 4831 or email

Notes to Editors
The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funds world-class, independent researchers in a wide range of subjects: ancient history, modern dance, archaeology, digital content, philosophy, English literature, design, the creative and performing arts, and much more. This financial year the AHRC will spend approximately £98m to fund research and postgraduate training in collaboration with a number of partners. The quality and range of research supported by this investment of public funds not only provides social and cultural benefits but also contributes to the economic success of the UK.

First published: 15 October 2013

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