Philosophy Magazine

CFA: BSPS Doctoral Scholarships

By Wuthrich


The British Society for the Philosophy of Science is offering up to two scholarships for doctoral work in the philosophy of science at a UK university, subject to candidates of sufficient merit presenting themselves.

About the Scholarships

The competition is open both to Home/EU and to international students. The scholarships will cover UK/EU fees at Research Council rates. International fees will be covered in part or in whole on a case by case basis, but will be covered at least up to UK/EU levels. The scholarships also include a maintenance grant of £13,726 (£15,726 in London). A Scholarship will be awarded for a period equal to the institutional norm for PhD study at the student’s institution minus any time already spent on the PhD. (For example, applicants in their first year of postgraduate study at institutions that follow a 2+2 (Masters + PhD) model may apply for three years of funding to begin in the second year of their masters degree.) Applicants must apply for all other sources of funding for which they are eligible. The scholarship is conditional on being accepted onto an appropriate doctoral programme in philosophy of science at a UK university in time for the start of the 2014-15 academic year.


The closing date for applications is 1 March 2014. Applicants are responsible for ensuring that complete applications, including references, arrive by the deadline.

The timing of the announcement of awards may be constrained by the timing of decisions by other funding bodies. Applicants with offers of funding from US institutions who require information prior to 15 April are encouraged to contact the BSPS at that time to enquire about the provisional outcome of their application.

How to Apply

A) Applicants should send (as a single PDF):

1. A curriculum vitae (no more than 2 sides of A4);
2. An outline of the proposed research (no more than 500 words);
3. A statement that:
i) confirms either that the applicant is not eligible for AHRC funding or that they have taken the necessary steps to be considered for such funding;
ii) states how much other funding, if any, the applicant has already secured; and
iii) states what other sources of funding have been applied for and the dates by which they will hear whether these applications have been successful.

In addition:

4. If the applicant has already been accepted onto an appropriate doctoral programme, they should provide evidence that this is so. Otherwise, an award will be made to a successful candidate subject to confirmation at a later date of their having been accepted onto an appropriate programme.

B) The proposed supervisor should send a brief statement (no more than 500 words) explaining why they are happy to supervise the applicant on the proposed project and how and why the supervisor’s institution is a good fit for the person and project. [See, also, Note 2 below.]

C) Two academic referees (one of whom may be the proposed supervisor) should write reference letters directly to the Honorary Secretary.

All documents should be sent by email to the Honorary Secretary at .

Any queries should also be directed to the Honorary Secretary.

Additional Information

1. A full BSPS scholarship will not be made to anyone with another source of funding. In cases where an awardee has partial funding from other sources, the size of the BSPS grant will be set accordingly. (For example, a successful applicant who has a fees-only award from elsewhere would still be eligible to receive a maintenance grant from the BSPS.)

2. Applicants may be in the position of considering a number of different departments for their doctoral studies and thus have a range of possible supervisors in mind. In this event, they should ask their currently preferred supervisor to write for them. Should an applicant be successful in the BSPS doctoral scholarship competition, but end up being accepted onto a PhD programme at a different institution from that of the supervisor who initially wrote for them, it would still be possible to hold the award at the new institution, subject to a suitable endorsement from the new supervisor. It should be noted that where it is obvious that a given applicant and project is a good fit to supervisor and institution, supervisors’ letters may be rather brief without thereby disadvantaging the candidate.

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