Our PhD Research.

Facing the mountain

Urban Institute

The Department of Geography has a vibrant research culture with over 30 academic staff and around 50 PhD students researching a wide range of topics across human and physical geography, from the impact of melting glaciers in the polar regions to the housing issues of the urban poor in the UK and questions of sustainable development worldwide.

This is reflected in the wide-ranging nature of our 6 Research Clusters - Power, Policy and Place; Geographies of the Global South; Culture, Space and Difference; Ice and Climate Research; Food, Environment and Water; and Landscape Dynamics - many of which examine multi- and inter-disciplinary themes.

Our PhD students come to us via a range of funding routes: through the university but also through UK and international funders. As a PhD student in Geography you will be researching at the edges of geographical knowledge, at a time when our discipline is contributing centrally to environmental and societal debates on how our world is evolving. 

Professor Grant Bigg and Dr Miguel Kanai - Directors of Doctoral Research

PhD training in the Faculty of Social Sciences

As part of the Faculty of Social Sciences you will have access to world class training alongside your doctoral study. The Social Sciences Doctoral Training programme is tailored to your individual needs to ensure you have the right skills you need to develop your research.

The training programme is designed to exceed current UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) training and development guidelines, and gives all our social science PhD students access to ESRC-funded White Rose Doctoral Training Partnership cohort activities, regardless of your source of funding.

Bespoke methods training is designed and delivered through the Sheffield Methods Institute which has world class research expertise in qualitative and quantitative methods. All our students receive interdisciplinary training and experience opportunities via the White Rose Doctoral Training Partnership, and additional discipline specific training is provided in each of our departments.


Research Networks

As a research student in Geography, you will be part of research clusters within the department as well as Research Centres across the university such as Sheffield Institute for International Developmentthe Urban Institute and the Grantham Centre for Sustainable Futures. Through our national and international networks of research councils, industrial partners, policy makers and academic scholarship, our students are part of a research environment in which postgraduates can thrive.