PhD projects within the School of Earth Sciences for September 2018 entry can be found here. It will be expected that you contact potential supervisors in advance of submitting an application.

Unless otherwise stated, all projects are eligible for full funding via our NERC GW4+ postgraduate training award. Please see the GW4+ website for further details.  Students may also be funded from a variety of UK and international industry and government sources; any funded studentships for which we are currently recruiting are also advertised below. 

Fully funded projects available:

  • The kinetics of defect aggregation in diamond. Unlocking the history in natural diamonds (Main supervisor Professor Simon Kohn) Kinetics in diamond (PDF, 457kB)

STFC Projects

We have funding for one STFC studentship with 3 possible projects outlined below, but applicants are also welcome to formulate alternative projects in discussion with possible supervisors [Chris Coath, Tim Elliott, Zoë Leinhardt (School of Physics), Oliver Lord, Ian Parkinson, Nick Teanby, James Wookey].  The deadline for applications is Sunday 15th July 2018 at 23:59 hours GMT. Study start date is September 2018.


GW4+ DTP projects

The GW4+ DTP opened for applications on 4th October 2017, with a deadline for applications of Sunday 7th January 2018 at 23:59 hours GMT. Study start date is September 2018.

Individual project titles that were available are listed below. Each description has details of the Project and Supervisor, and other background information.

Projects list


To apply to the University of Bristol you must apply online

When applying for the GW4+DTP please select 'NERC Great Western Four+ Doctoral Training Programme DTP PhD' in the Programme Choice page drop down menu. When you reach the end of the application pages, after the CV page, on the Great Western Four+ Doctoral Training Partnership (NERC) page please specify the School of your project choice. You will need to make a separate application for each project.

Please note that unless applying for the GW4+DTP you should select PhD in Geology as the programme.


If you have any questions, please contact the Postgraduate Administrator via email

General information on postgraduate admissions can be found on the University postgraduate webpages

Did you know?

The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) has awarded the University of Bristol's School of Earth Sciences six research studentships each year in recent years in addition to NERC Open CASE and tied studentships.

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