ESRC SWDTC Studentship: Working class environmentalisms in contemporary India Ref: 2084

About the award

The University of Exeter is pleased to be offering a total of up to 22 ESRC funded 1+3 or +3 studentships, including any collaborative projects, as part of the South West Doctoral Training Centre (SWDTC) for entry in 2016-17. Within the DTC, the College of Life and Environmental Sciences is currently inviting applications for the project entitled: Working class environmentalisms in contemporary India. This project is one of a number that are in competition for funding. Studentships will be awarded on the basis of merit and strategic fit with the aims of the DTC.

For eligible UK/EU students the full time studentship will cover fees and an annual Research Council stipend of at least £14,057 (2015-16 rate) for up to three years (+3 award) or four years (1+3 award).

For the 1+3 studentships we would require you to register initially on the MRes Critical Human Geographies (Streatham campus). For the +3 studentships we would require you to register on the MPhil/PhD Human Geography (Streatham campus).


Krithika Srinivasan Human Geography (University of Exeter)

Karen Bickerstaff Human Geography (University of Exeter)

Project Description:

This project on working-class environmentalisms in the Global South explores intersections between labour and environmental movements in India. Sustainability agendas continue to be viewed as in conflict with working-class concerns about jobs and livelihoods (Rathzel and Uzzell 2011). All the same, a growing corpus of work (Braca 2012) points to existing and potential linkages between labour and environmental movements, especially in the context of transnational markets, production and consumption. These linkages are a critical, and as yet underdeveloped, facet of environmental justice theory. Building on this nascent literature, this project aims to investigate the intersections between workers’/labour movements in India and global sustainability action. Key empirical aims include the examination of how synergies between environmental and labour agendas emerge and play out on the ground, and the analysis of the different spatial, temporal and geopolitical scales at which these intersections manifest.

Academic entry requirements: For the 1+3 programme students must have a strong first degree (at least an Upper Second Class Honours or equivalent) in a relevant discipline. Candidates for the +3 programme must, in addition, have (or be about to complete) a research Masters degree (at least Merit (60%) overall and 60% for the dissertation component) in a relevant discipline or have equivalent research training. The Masters degree should contain a significant element of research training (this is defined as including significant social sciences research design, quantitative and qualitative research methods elements. Your transcript will need to show that a minimum of a third of your programme entailed research methods elements). Personal qualities should include the ability to work independently and the motivation necessary to complete a PhD in three years.

Residency entry requirements: These studentships will be funded by the ESRC and are available to UK nationals and other EU nationals who have resided in the UK for three years prior to commencing the studentship. If you meet the criteria, funding will be provided for tuition fees and stipend. If you are a citizen of an EU member state and don’t meet the UK residency requirement you will be eligible for a fees-only award. Applicants who are classed as International for tuition fee purposes are not eligible for funding. For further guidance about eligibility please refer to Annex 1 of the ESRC Postgraduate Funding Guide.


Application deadline:4th February 2016
Value:£14,057 plus UK/EU tuition fees for eligible students
Duration of award:per year
Contact: CLES Postgraduate Research office: +44 (0)1392 725150/

How to apply

Click here to apply

  • CV
  • Covering letter outlining your academic interests, any prior research experience and reasons for wishing to undertake this project, as well as a research training statement. The research training statement should cover any training to date e.g. Masters level modules, plus any training needs you may require when you start the programme e.g. specific methodologies, advanced training needs, difficult language training, etc.
  • Research proposal of 1,000 words detailing how you will approach the project. . For 1+3 students it is recognised that this will be an outline proposal to be further developed during the first year of the studentship
  • 2 references from referees familiar with your academic work (if your referees prefer, they can email the reference direct to
  • Verified transcript of your highest qualification to date or an interim transcript if you are still studying
  • If you are not a national of a majority English-speaking country you will need to submit evidence of your proficiency in English (for further details, please see the University’s English language requirements).

Interviews for short listed applicants will take place at Streatham Campus, Exeter, from 8-10 March 2016.