Politics PhD / MPhil

Our research covers British Politics, Political Science, Political Communication, Local Government, International Studies, Comparative Politics, Populism, Health and Political Engagement, Security Studies, Gender Studies, and Political Theory. We also have expertise in local studies focused on Scouse identity, Liverpool, and Merseyside more broadly.

Why study with us?

The Department of Politics provides researchers with a supportive academic environment. Students are given the opportunity not only to develop their research but also the particular skills they need. Supervision is organised very well with supervisors always available and ready to help.

Mate Subašić - Politics PhD Student
  • 70%

    of our research was graded ‘Internationally Excellent’ or ‘Internationally Recognised’ in the REF (2014).

  • 21

    current research staff.

  • 14

    PhD students.

Overview

Doctoral Research

A PhD is an international qualification that enables you to make an original contribution to knowledge in a specific area of research interest. This can be defined as the discovery of new knowledge; testing the intellectual rigor of an existing theory or methodological approach in a new area; fusing theoretical approaches; or a combination of each.

To help you ensure your doctoral research meets this criteria of making an original claim we provide high-quality methodological training that allows you to develop your research skills during the course of your study. Your supervisor will provide guidance on this process.

Our current doctoral candidates are researching British Politics, British political ideologies, electoral behaviour, conflict and post-conflict studies, and international studies.

Why Come to Liverpool?

Our researchers in the Department of Politics are world-leading experts in their respective research fields.

They regularly publish in high-impact academic journals, books, edited collections as well as engage with national and international media outlets. Scholars also regularly interact with politicians through providing advice for legislation in the House of Commons as well as quaisi-judicial bodies and international organisations. We are also active in the Political Studies Association, the PSA Early Careers Network, Royal Historical Society, and BISA.

Our research covers Parliamentary studies, voting behavior, British political ideologies, local government, Northern Ireland studies, race, LGBTQ studies, international relations, political theory, political language, health and political engagement, democratization, European studies, human trafficking, the legacy of slavery and contemporary forced labour.

Research themes

Our research themes are:

  • American Politics
  • British Politics
  • Comparative Politics
  • European Politics and Europeanisation
  • Electoral Studies
  • Ideologies
  • International Relations
  • International Organisations
  • Immigration politics
  • Media and politics
  • Nationalism and Ethnicity
  • Irish Politics
  • Political Theory
  • Politics of Eastern and Central Europe
  • Politics of the Middle East
  • Public Opinion
  • Public Policy
  • Post-Soviet politics
  • Security Politics
  • Politics of the Middle East.

Research interests

We welcome expressions of interest in a wide range of potential research interests which include:

  • Ancient theories of political rhetoric, political science/ideologies
  • British Politics
  • British political ideologies
  • Citizenship
  • Comparative politics; counter-terrorism, organised crime, international anti-crime agreements
  • Comparative public opinion, voting behaviour, political parties and quantitative research
  • Contemporary liberal and republican thought
  • Ethnicity, nations, nationalism and identity: Eastern and Central Europe, the Balkans, post-Soviet space and the Middle East
  • European Union politics
  • Global governance; international peace building (the Balkans)
  • International Organisations and International law
  • Inequality, conflict and democracy in world politics
  • Multiculturalism, Secularism
  • Norm change, private military and security contractors in civil wars and market(s) for force
  • Politics of immigration and forced labour
  • Politics of Northern Ireland and devolution in the UK
  • Post-Soviet political reforms; Non-state actors and welfare reform in the "Global East"
  • Public policy and policy transfer
  • Press, television, public opinion in the UK
  • Political theory, marginalised voices, aesthetics and international relations, identity
  • Political communication, rhetoric and oratory
  • Political economy of development.

Facilities

We pride ourselves on integrating our postgraduate students within our supportive research environment. Our students present their work-in progress at various stages of completion in informal monthly staff-student research seminars. In addition to excellent library facilities and opportunities for interdisciplinary inputs into research degrees, the Faculty and School run research methods training programmes. We also offer access to computerised databases on specialist areas of interest: advanced training in IT and data-mining skills. The Department of Politics also hosts a research active ‘Network for the Interface of Classics and Politics’ and a ‘Europe and the World Centre’ which encourages our students to participate in its many activities and international conferences.


Study options and fees


Applications are welcomed from well qualified graduates who would typically hold a UK first degree or equivalent in the first or 2:1 class plus a Masters degree, in a relevant subject.

Students considering registering for a research degree (Masters by Research, MPhil/PhD) are asked to produce a 1,000 word research proposal and send it to our Departmental Director for Postgraduate Research of the Department of Politics. Dr Andrew Roe-Crines - E: acrines@liverpool.ac.uk. This will then be circulated to potential supervisors.

Applications are welcome from suitably qualified candidates who wish to undertake research leading to a PhD in Politics on either a full- or part-time basis. We ordinarily expect candidates for entry to our PhD programme to hold a first degree in the First or 2:1 class and a Master’s degree (preferably pass of 65% or higher) in a relevant subject area from a UK university, or EU/overseas qualifications of an equivalent standard.

We welcome applications from around the world. You should ensure that your qualifications are equivalent to those required to study for this research degree. See our guidance on international qualifications.

You must also have reached a minimum standard of English and be able to provide evidence of this. See our English language requirements for international students.


Entry requirements

Applications are welcomed from well qualified graduates who would typically hold a UK first degree or equivalent in the first or 2:1 class, or a 2:2 class degree plus a Masters degree, in a relevant subject.

Students considering registering for a research degree (Masters by Research, MPhil/PhD) are asked to produce a 1,000 word research proposal and send it to our Departmental Director for Postgraduate Research of the Department of Politics. Dr Andrew Roe-Crines - E: a.s.crines@liverpool.ac.uk. This will then be circulated to potential supervisors.

Applications are welcome from suitably qualified candidates who wish to undertake research leading to a PhD in Politics on either a full- or part-time basis. We ordinarily expect candidates for entry to our PhD programme to hold a first degree in the First or 2:1 class and a Master’s degree (preferably pass of 65% or higher) in a relevant subject area from a UK university, or EU/overseas qualifications of an equivalent standard.

We welcome applications from around the world. You should ensure that your qualifications are equivalent to those required to study for this research degree. See our guidance on international qualifications.

You must also have reached a minimum standard of English and be able to provide evidence of this. See our English language requirements for international students.


How to apply

Research degree applications can be made online.  You'll also need to ensure that you have funding to cover all fees.

Applications are open all year round.

More about applying for research degrees

Apply online

Before you apply, we recommend that you identify a supervisor and develop a research proposal


Related studentships: self-funded and funded PhD projects


Find a scholarship

We offer a range of scholarships to help you meet the costs of studying a research degree.

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