AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Award, PhD Studentship for ‘The Migrant Eye: Reactivating the Photographic Past through Archives and Exhibitions in Liverpool and North West England’ (Communication & Media, University of Liverpool/Tate Liverpool)


Applications are invited for an AHRC CDA doctoral studentship offered by the University of Liverpool and Tate Liverpool AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership, to start in October 2021.

The studentship will be based in the Department of Communication and Media, School of the Arts, and will also involve periods of research based at Tate Liverpool. The successful applicant will work on a collaborative project led by Prof. Michelle Henning () and Dr. Jordana Blejmar () with co-supervision from Lindsey Fryer () at the Tate Liverpool.

The studentship will investigate photography archives and the work of named photographers to address the experience of exiles, migrants, stateless, and marginalised people. We are interested in the photographer as a marginalised or migrant figure; how marginalisation and the experience of migration might inform their gaze; how such photographers have come to contest and to shape a cultural and collective memory; and how that can inform contemporary curatorial, learning and interpretation practices. Combining an historical and contemporary approach, this project will bring to light underexplored images and decolonize the photographic archive, but also activate historical images in the present. For more information visit the project’s website.

The team supervising this project provide a unique combination of expertise in historical and contemporary art and photography, archives and exhibitions, memory, politics and transcultural experience, learning and public engagement. With their support, the student will develop their own research questions and trajectory. They will identify their own case studies and impact pathways for the research, and ways of reactivating archives in the present through Tate (e.g. through innovative exhibitions, seminars and workshops that bring different collections and artworks together in a public context) Collections, enhancing and developing the archives for future use by diverse communities. The student will also bring a prior interest and engagement with contemporary and historical art and culture in relation to questions of diversity and ethnic minorities. We particularly welcome applications from Black and POC candidates.

Application process

The minimum application submission requirements are: two high quality academic references, Undergraduate degree (2:1 essential), Master's degree (normally with Merit or above), merit (or 60%) for dissertation, or evidence of high-quality writing analysis. 

Applicants should email  and  the following by 5th February, 2020 at 5pm GMT

  • Academic CV (max. 2 pages) including two named referees (one of whom should be your most recent academic tutor/supervisor)
  • Copy of first degree and Master’s degree transcripts (or anticipated grade if applicable)
  • Letter of application (max. 2 pages) outlining suitability for the studentship and how you anticipate approaching the research. This should include proposed research questions and suggested methodology.

The successful candidate will have to submit a final application through the University Graduate Application Portal: https://www.liverpool.ac.uk/study/postgraduate-research/how-to-apply/

While we can *provisionally* offer a candidate the post, the offer is subject to the Liverpool Doctoral Training Programme 's approval.

Informal enquiries about the project should be directed to the University supervisors Prof. Michelle Henning and Dr. Jordana Blejmar ().

Informal meeting with Supervisors

Tuesday 12 January 2020, 12-1pm, please register via Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/ahrc-collaborative-doctoral-award-phd-studentship-for-the-migrant-eye-tickets-133214222325

·        Find out more about the award and about the project

·        Qualifications and requirements needed

·        Application process

Application deadline: Friday 5 February 2021

Please note interviews will take place on Friday 26 February 2021 

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.