PhD Case studentship - ESRC fully funded PhD opportunity

Precarious employment and pension planning studentship offered by MICRA and NEST.

Studentship: 3 year, full time, fully funded PhD studentship

Award: £20,009 pa tax free stipend, plus full fees (EU/Home rates) and a training grant of £750 pa

Deadline: 5pm Wednesday 13 March 2019

Interviews: Wednesday 27 March 2019

This is a great opportunity for a fully funded three-year ESRC PhD studentship in a unique collaboration between the Manchester Institute for Collaborative Research on Ageing (MICRA) at The University of Manchester and NEST, a leading pension provider with over seven million members. Supervised by Professor Debora Price (MICRA) and Professor Sue Heath (Sociology), the study investigates the pension planning of precarious workers using qualitative methods, providing new and urgently required sociological insights into how this growing segment of the population is managing an increasingly privatised and individualised pension system. It aims to (1) elucidate the institutional, social and personal contexts that frame and influence individuals’ financial decision making, and (2) assess what this means for social and financial inequalities, and for policy. The research will inform our understanding of real-life financial decision making in an increasingly individualised system where people are expected to take high levels of responsibility for their own financial welfare in later life, and where traditional employment rights and protections have been eroded. Based in MICRA and with close links to NEST and the opportunity to spend time in the NEST Insight Team, this collaboration offers exceptional insight into how the work of researchers feeds into policymaking and policy impact.

Students from any relevant discipline will be considered including (but not limited to) gerontology, sociology, social policy, psychology, economics, geography, anthropology, management, business studies or human resources. An excellent academic record (first class or high merit achieved or expected at Masters level) and clear motivation to study for a PhD are required. A demonstrable interest in social inequalities, lifecourse research, financial welfare, money, pensions or behavioural responses to policy is desirable.

Each year the student will receive the full ESRC stipend (£15,009 in 2019/20) plus £5,000 pa stipend from NEST (£20,009 tax free), as well as a research training grant of £750 per annum and full fees paid at Home/EU rates. Students must be eligible for ESRC studentship funding: you must have settled status in the UK and been ordinarily resident in the UK for three years prior to the grant, and – if not an EU or UK national – this residence must not have been for the purposes of full-time education.

MICRA and the Department of Sociology are in the School of Social Sciences at the University of Manchester. You will be joining a vibrant and dynamic group of PhD students focusing on the social, political, economic, legal and ethical factors shaping our lives, and you will be part of a world-leading centre for gerontological and sociological research.

The studentship will begin in September 2019, Full Time for three years.

To apply please send (1) a CV, including degree classification for any prior degrees and all module grades at undergraduate and postgraduate study, of no more than four pages; (2) a supporting statement of between one and two pages setting out how your skills, experience, attributes and interests equip you for this PhD; and (3) a short covering letter including contact details for two academic referees; by email to debora.price@manchester.ac.uk no later than 5pm on Wednesday, 13 March 2019. Please include 'ESRC PhD studentship at MICRA' in the subject line. The successful candidate will be required to submit a full UoM PhD application to fulfil admissions requirements.

Interviews will be held on Wednesday 27 March 2019. You will be notified no later than 20 March 2019 whether you have been short-listed for interview.

For further information or an informal discussion, contact Professor. Debora Price on debora.price@manchester.ac.uk.

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