Empirical analysis of data to answer socially relevant research questions

PhD in Applied Social and Economic Research

This PhD programme is targeted at students who are interested in quantitative research in sociology and other social sciences. The PhD would involve empirical analysis of data (usually secondary data) to answer socially relevant research questions.

ISER offers a friendly, stimulating and interdisciplinary research environment where students are active members. Students participate in of one or more of our six research groups. You will have access to excellent research facilities and equipment. ISER researchers have contributed to the top 5 economic and top 20 sociology rankings for the university in the past REF (REF 2014).

ISER is home to three major research centres and surveys: ESRC Research Centre on Micro-social Change (MiSoC); Centre for Microsimulation and Policy Analysis (CEMPA); and Understanding Society: the UK Household Longitudinal Study (Understanding Society).


Cara Booker; Emilia Del Bono; Paul Fisher; Angus Holford; Alita Nandi; Birgitta Rabe; Karon Gush; Emily Grundy; Silvia Avram; Paul Clarke; Laura Fumagalli; Magda Borkowska; Daria Popova; Carla Xena; Michaela Benzeval; Edith Aguirre, Zsofia Boda; Matteo Richiardi; Paulo Serodio; Justin van de Ven, Selin Koksal; Violetta Parutis

Application deadlines:

Applications are accepted throughout the year, however most students start in October with some starting in January. Funders may dictate start dates, so please check the guidelines when applying.

If you are interested in making an application for this PhD contact potential academic supervisors as no application will be processed without a confirmed supervisor.

Find out how to apply or email iserphd@essex.ac.uk


Colchester Campus


Full-time: 3 years (Plus up to 1 year writing up if required)
Part-time: 6 years
Full-time: 2 years
Part-time: 4 years


Home/EU: £4,712 (FT)
International: £17, 900 (FT)


Taught and research degrees


Supervision and teaching from leading academics


Fully-funded studentships through our Doctoral Training Centre

How to apply

A step by step guide