University of Exeter funding: PhD Studentship: Public Space in Ea

Public Renaissance: Urban Cultures of Public Space in Early Modern Italy PhD Studentship – Art History and Visual Culture. Ref: 3464

About the award

This PhD opportunity arises in conjunction with the exciting new collaborative European project led by Prof Fabrizio Nevola:

Public Renaissance: Urban Cultures of Public Space between Early Modern Europe and the Present and funded by Humanities in the European Research Area (HERA). A fully funded studentship (at UK/EU rate) for one PhD student to commence study in September 2019 has been generously provided by the College of Humanities, University to Exeter.

The central concept of the project is that of a “Public Renaissance”, by which we intend to examine both the urban cultures of public space in the early modern era, and to set this into dynamic dialogue with the recently invigorated discourse around the agency of public space in shaping contemporary events. An interdisciplinary team of architectural, social and cultural historians, in collaboration with non-academic partners from the museum/heritage sector, will probe the continuities and ruptures that shape urban spaces of the past in relation to contemporary urban interaction in the urbanised heart of Europe.

The PhD project will focus on two or more urban centres in Italy to develop, through archival and primary research, a comparative analysis of how built urban spaces and commissioned artistic programmes provided settings for social interaction across a range of social groups. Public Renaissance is a concept that evokes our non-elitist reading of Renaissance culture, exemplified by our focus on ordinary people and the everyday (e.g. public readings; preaching; social gatherings in the tavern; exchanges in the marketplace; performance of street-singers; distribution of popular prints; executions etc.). Your PhD project proposal will thus run parallel to the project activities and you will participate in project meetings and training.

You will have a previous degree in art history or urban history, some prior knowledge of Italian sources, and a desire to conduct archival research. Some prior training in digital humanities approaches (e.g. GIS) would be an advantage, although training can be provided through Exeter’s Digital Humanities Lab.

For more information about the project and informal enquiries, please contact the primary supervisor, Professor Fabrizio Nevola:

Entry requirements

You should have or expect to achieve at least a 2:1 Honours degree, or international equivalent, in History of Art, Urban History, History and have obtained or be currently working towards a Master’s degree at Merit level or international equivalent, in History of Art, Urban History or History. Experience in Italian History is essential and some prior experience of Digital Humanities approaches is desirable.

If English is not your first language you will need to meet the English language requirements and provide proof of proficiency. Click here for more information and a list of acceptable alternative tests.

Please note that this studentship is only open to applicants who will start their studies in September 2019, not those who have already started.

Residency Entry Requirements:

1) UK/EU only - This studentship, including full tuition fees and maintenance allowance, is available to UK/EU candidates.
2) No international eligibility - Candidates who are classed as international for tuition fee purposes are not eligible for this studentship.

How to apply

You will be asked to submit some personal details and upload a full CV, covering letter, research proposal and details of two academic referees and, if relevant, proof of your English language proficiency, by 29 April 2019.

You will also be asked to upload verified transcripts of your most academic qualification.
All application documents must be submitted in English. Certified translated copies of academic qualifications must also be provided.

You must ensure that your referees email their references to by 29 April 2019. Please note that we will not be contacting referees to request references, you must arrange for them to be submitted to us by the deadline. References should be submitted by your referees to us directly in the form of a letter. Referees must email their references to us from their institutional email accounts. We cannot accept references from personal/private email accounts, unless it is a scanned document on institutional headed paper and signed by the referee.

Interviews will be held at Exeter’s Streatham Campus in the week commencing 20 MAY 2019.
Please quote reference 3464 on your application and in any correspondence about this studentship.


Application deadline:29th April 2019
Number of awards:1
Value:For eligible UK/EU students, this full time scholarship will cover fees and an annual stipend of at £14,777 for up to three years.
Duration of award:per year
Contact: PGR Admissions - +44 (0) 1392 723044