World-Leading St Andrews Scholarship in Imperial Information Cultures2021 entry
The University of St Andrews is pleased to offer a full scholarship funded by St Leonard’s Postgraduate College, to support an exceptional student undertaking doctoral research in the following project:
Information Cultures of the British Empire, 1880-1950
From the Great Trigonometric Survey of India to the construction of the globe-spanning ‘All Red Line’ telegraph network, Britain’s Empire was built and administered by means of the collection, control, and distribution of information. Certain aspects of these information networks have been explored by historians of science and technology, and by historians of the news and media; and literary scholars have explored their representation in the works of writers from Rudyard Kipling and Rabindranath Tagore to E. M. Forster and D. H. Lawrence. This project extends that work to think about ‘information cultures’, or the way in which this growing empire of information was imagined, represented, and understood in literary, historical, and scientific sources.
The project will be an exciting collaboration between literary and historical approaches that will enable the student to explore the techniques of rhetoric and representation through which various British commentators and colonial subjects – bureaucrats, politicians, scientists, novelists – each sought, in different ways, and with differing agendas, to navigate, manage, and understand imperial information cultures.
Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates wishing to undertake doctoral research on the intersections between literary and informational culture in the later part of Britain’s imperial era. The precise focus and methods of the project will be determined by the research interests of the successful applicant. As a guideline, research proposals are encouraged which engage with any of the following areas of inquiry:
(1) The rhetoric of imperial migration in informational and literary sources;
(2) Representations of imperial administration in early twentieth-century British literature and related culture;
(3) Official and unofficial information networks and the work of specific agents – editors, publishers, journalists, government officials, etc. – who brokered the flow of information between different parts of the British world;
(4) Imperial information in wartime (colonial propaganda networks, espionage, surveillance, etc.)
(5) Networks of scientific information (surveys, expeditions, specimen collecting, scientific conferences, etc.)
Projects may focus on a specific region or regions within the British Empire, or on imperial information systems more broadly. They may be inspired by colonial history and cultural history, information history, modern literary history, or the history of science and technology. They need not cover the whole of the date range 1880-1950, but the focus of the proposed research must fall within the specified period.
The successful candidate will have a good undergraduate degree and Masters degree or equivalent in English, History, or another relevant discipline, and will be expected to demonstrate a strong commitment to both literary and historical scholarship.
Applications are particularly welcome from women, people from the Black, Asian, Minority or Ethnic (BAME) community and other groups which are under-represented in the University.
The student will be supervised by Dr James Purdon (School of English) and Professor Aileen Fyfe (School of History).
Informal enquiries regarding this scholarship may be addressed to Dr James Purdon – email email@example.com
Domicile for fee status
Level of study
Postgraduate Research (Doctoral)
Year of entry
2021-2022 academic year
The student can start their degree in September 2021 or January 2022.
Please note: the academic year at the University of St Andrews begins in September. A successful candidate beginning in September 2021 will have access to orientation events and research skills programmes which may not be available at other times in the year.
School of English and School of History
Applicants must not already (i) hold a doctoral degree; or (ii) be matriculated for a doctoral degree at the University of St Andrews or another institution.
Duration of award
Up to 3.0 years. The successful candidate will be expected to have completed the doctorate degree by the end of the award term. The award term excludes the continuation period and any extension periods.
Value of award
The award covers full tuition fees for the award term as well as an annual stipend payable at the standard UK Research Council rate (the 2021-22 annual rate is £15,560).
Tuition or maintenance award
Tuition and maintenance.
Doctoral Research at St Andrews
As a doctoral student at the University of St Andrews you will be part of a growing, vibrant, and intellectually stimulating postgraduate community. St Andrews is one of the leading research-intensive universities in the world and offers a postgraduate experience of remarkable richness.
St Leonard’s Postgraduate College is at the heart of the postgraduate community of St Andrews. The College supports all postgraduates and aims to provide opportunities for postgraduates to come together, socially and intellectually, and make new connections.
St Leonard’s Postgraduate College works closely with the Postgraduate Society which is one of the most active societies within the Students’ Association. All doctoral students are automatically welcomed into the Postgraduate Society when they join the University.
In addition to the research training that doctoral students complete in their home School, doctoral students at St Andrews have access to GRADskills – a free, comprehensive training programme to support their academic, professional, and personal development.
- Apply for admission as a doctoral student. Please see the advice on Research programmes.
- After you have applied for your chosen Postgraduate Research course, you can apply for scholarships and funding by logging into My Application. After applying for your chosen course beginning in the 2021-2022 academic year, you must allow at least two working days for processing and issue of your log in details before you can apply for this scholarship.
- Select 2021/2 as the Academic Year and click Refresh list.
- Locate World-Leading St Andrews Doctoral Scholarships in the list of scholarships (using the filter box if necessary), click Apply and complete the application form.
- You can also use the catalogue to search and apply for other scholarships for which you are eligible.
If you are a current student at St Andrews, you can access Scholarships and Funding through MySaint. However, you should wait until after you have applied for your intended postgraduate programme before doing so, to ensure that the scholarship application is linked to that course.
As part of the scholarship application you will be required to upload a personal statement. This should serve as a cover letter for the research project application as a whole, and should include:
- An outline of your suitability for the project (project criteria can be found in the "Eligibility" and "Project Description" sections above).
- Why the project interests you.
- What you would bring to the project in terms of previous skills and expertise.
- Any ideas that you may have for the realisation of the project.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any enquiries about the scholarship application process.
When do applications open?
Scholarship application deadline
15 February 2021
When should I apply for the scholarship?
Apply for the scholarship as soon as possible after you have applied for admission.
When will I hear if my application has been successful?
Within two months of the application deadline.