South-East Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS)

You may be eligible for a SeNSS scholarship (funded by the Economic Social Research Council) if you're taking one of 12 pathways in Social Sciences.

Find out about our:

Sociology students at the University of Sussex

PhD scholarships

Applications are now open for this award.

See our full list of scholarships.

Who can apply for SeNSS funding?

We run 12 accredited training pathways at Sussex.

Studentships are available in these pathways either for a 1+3 PhD (one year Masters and three year PhD degree) or +3 PhD (three year PhD degree), and can be held on a full-time or part-time basis.

You can apply for pathways in:

  • Business and Management
  • Development Studies
  • Economics
  • Education
  • Human Geography
  • Politics and International Studies
  • Psychology
  • Science, Technology and Sustainability
  • Social Anthropology
  • Social Work and Social Policy
  • Socio-Legal Studies
  • Sociology.

Academic qualifications

If you are applying for the 1+3 PhD you must have at least an upper-second class (2.1) undergraduate honours degree.

If you are applying for the +3 PhD you should have:

  • at least an upper second-class (2.1) undergraduate honours degree
  • a Masters degree in a relevant discipline which includes significant research training.

Residential eligibility

SeNSS ESRC studentships are open to UK and Overseas/International students according to the UKRI student eligibility rules.

You count as a UK student if you are:

  • a UK national who has been living in the UK or EU for the three years prior to starting your course;
  • an EU national with Settled Status in the UK;
  • an EU national with Pre-Settled status who has been living in the UK for 3 years prior to starting your course;
  • a student will Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK;
  • an Irish National (due to a reciprocal agreement with the UK).

All other students (e.g. EU nationals moving to the UK to start their PhD) will count as Overseas students.

If you have already commenced doctoral study, you may still be eligible for an ESRC studentship funding providing that, you will have at least 50% of your funded period of study remaining as of 1 October 2021 when the studentship commences - i.e. you have not completed more than 18 months of a full-time PhD by 1 October 2021.

Which routes can you apply for?

If you're applying for the +3 PhD, you need to have completed a Masters with research training in Social Sciences methodologies. For more information contact us by email on

If you're applying for the 1+3 PhD, you must apply to an accredited Masters programme for your pathway:


Science, Technology and Sustainability


All other pathways

Additional funding

If you are successful with your application to SeNSS, you will also have access to additional funding grants to support your development as a researcher.

This includes support for:

  • UK and overseas fieldwork
  • travel to national and international conferences
  • specific training/professional development activities (e.g. language support)
  • overseas institutional visits.

How to apply

You'll need to make two separate applications:

  • an application to Sussex to apply for a place on the course you want to study
  • an application to apply for funding.

See further guidance on applications and deadlines.

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