Scholarships and international applicants

We warmly welcome applications from students within the EU and overseas. We have a long history of hosting postgraduate students from Europe, North and South America, Asia and Australia/New Zealand in the School.

For home and some EU students, you may be eligible for studentships funded by the UK research councils in Human Geography (e.g. the ESRC) and Physical Geography (e.g. NERC and EPSRC).

We also have experience in supporting students from overseas who would not be eligible for UK research council funding, but who either self-fund or win scholarships either from their own country or internally at Bristol. Please see University of Bristol scholarships.

If you would like help with finding out how you might attain funding for postgraduate study at Bristol – please see our pages on funding postgraduate study in the first instance. You can also search for funding opportunities available to you.

Please feel free to contact us to request further information. We are involved every year in supporting students in attaining scholarships from many different countries, and will do what we can to help. Please send your initial enquiry to

Below are some example PhD projects which exemplify the range of subjects covered.

This list is not exhaustive, so if you have another idea or project in mind, please contact one of the supervisors listed below, other potential supervisors or the postgraduate admissions tutors to discuss and develop further.

Project titleSupervisor(s)
Environmental, economic, political, and social development: ESRC South West Doctoral Training Centre (SWDTC) Professor Clive Sabel

Further information is available.

Advanced quantitative methods in social science and health Dr David Manley

Further information is available.

Nitrogen cycling in desert soil: a significant and neglected component of the global N cycle Dr Alex Anesio

Further information is available (PDF, 157kB).

Down the cryoconite hole: An interdisciplinary investigation of biogeochemical dynamics at glacier and ice sheet surfaces Dr Sandra Arndt

Further information is available (PDF, 181kB).

Water level dynamics in the Amazon River from CryoSat radar altimetry Professor Jonathan Bamber

Further information is available (PDF, 235kB).

Current and future European flood risk Professor Paul Bates

Further information is available (PDF, 127kB).

Energy and nutrient transfers at the “nexus of weathering and biology”: the rock-soil interface Dr Alex Anesio

Further information is available (PDF, 425kB).

Palaeoenvironmental controls on the accumulation of hydrocarbon source rocks in Paratethys Dr Rachel Flecker

Further information is available (PDF, 63kB).

Improved models of water quality behaviour for evaluating monitoring strategies, prediction uncertainties, and to support decision-making. Professor Jim Freer

Further information is available (PDF, 235kB).

Decoding geomorphological chatter: non-linear communication between hillslopes and channels in dryland valleys Dr Katerina Michaelides

Further information is available (PDF, 256kB).

Evolution and climate impact of newly discovered marine phytoplankton Dr Fanny Monteiro

Further information is available (PDF, 157kB).

Modelling global ocean diversity of zooplankton and response to climate change Dr Fanny Monteiro

Further information is available (PDF, 137kB).

Closing the gap between land surface and flood inundation modelling Dr Jeff Neal

Further information is available (PDF, 64kB).

Developing regional scale hydrodynamic models Dr Jeff Neal

Further information is available (PDF, 279kB).

Assessing past oxygen in the ocean using Cr isotopes as a palaeoproxy Dr Fanny Monteiro

Further information is available (PDF, 92kB).

Fractionation of magnesium isotopes during bacterially mediated carbonate precipitation; A new tool for understanding the origins of Mg-rich carbonates Dr Alex Anesio

Further information is available (PDF, 88kB).

Spatial and Temporal Variation of Quaternary Uplift Rates from Dating of Cave Deposits Dr David Richards

Further information is available (PDF, 84kB).

Exploring the Subglacial Biogeochemical Reactor and its Role in Global Biogeochemical Cycles and Climate Professor Martyn Tranter


Case Study

My research aims to understand the geographical variation of aggressive behaviour across neighbourhoods in the city of Medellin, Colombia, as well as the importance of structural and social neighbourhood conditions such as poverty and social control.

My PhD is funded by a mix of grant and loan student from the COLCIENCIAS Science & Technology Program (Colombia) and the University I work for in Colombia (the University of Antioquia).

Additionally, since the COLCIENCIAS programme does not include any money for books or conferences, I have done some work at the University of Bristol as an auxiliary librarian, teaching assistant and research assistant.

These university-based jobs have flexible schedules, meaning that I have been able to do them without reducing my productivity as a researcher, and while still enjoying University life.

Beatriz Caicedo Velasque
Supervisor: Professor Kelvyn Jones