About the School of Philosophical, Anthropological and Film Studies

The School of Philosophical, Anthropological and Film Studies comprises the Departments of Philosophy, Social Anthropology and Film Studies. Philosophy and Social Anthropology were combined into a single School in early 1996 whilst Film Studies joined in 2008. The departments are in close proximity and use several rooms interchangeably for meetings; they also share two libraries.

Underpinning the mission and activities of the School and its Departments, the Strategic Plan 2021 – 2026 (PDF)  outlines School aspirations, aims and commitment to world leading and inclusive teaching and research.

The School has an excellent reputation for research-led teaching, reflected in league table results; for example, the Guardian University Guide for 2020 has Social Anthropology ranked 2nd, Philosophy 3rd and Film Studies 2nd in the UK.


The School hosts a number of research centres and institutes that provide focal points for staff and students working in connected fields with overlapping memberships.

The School also houses the following research centres:


Social Anthropology

Film Studies


The School is managed by the Head of School with the support of a School Management Committee, consisting of the three Heads of Departments, a representative Director of Teaching, the School Manager, and the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Officer. For many purposes, each Department operates as an independent unit of teaching, research and service with its own administrative structure.