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University of Portsmouth announces first international, split site PhD programme

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Students accepted on a new PhD programme at the University of Portsmouth will have the unique opportunity to research and teach in both Britain and Sweden, thanks to a new collaboration established between the University of Portsmouth and Halmstad University.

The basis for this partnership began with historians from Portsmouth’s Port Towns and Urban Cultures research group working with colleagues in Halmstad. This led to a recent Erasmus (European Learning) agreement between the universities.

Professor Brad Beaven, from the School of Area Studies, History, Politics and Literature at the University of Portsmouth, said: “In the course of discussions, it became apparent there is considerable overlap between the various subject areas at the two universities. These areas include History, Sociology, Politics and International Relations, Education, English Literature and Language. In common with Portsmouth, Halmstad has university-wide interdisciplinary research themes, which are Smart Cities and Communities and Health Innovation. The collaboration seemed like a natural fit and we are delighted to be able to offer our students this unrivalled opportunity.”

The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences annually funds two bursaries. This year, the supervision of these two bursaries will be shared with staff in Halmstad, with Halmstad sponsoring a third bursary. All three bursaries will be registered at the University of Portsmouth.

Dr Simon Stewart, Director of the Centre of European and International Studies Research, explained: “Students will have the best of both worlds – they will have access to the expertise of staff and gain research training from two Universities.”

The bursaries will be advertised in the Spring with an October 2020 start.

This collaboration has led researchers at both universities to recognise the synergies between their interdisciplinary research culture and they are keen to work on a range of collaborative projects. These include:

  • Co-authorship of research outputs
  • Research bid collaboration
  • Exploring research collaboration in the digital humanities
  • Co-editing a journal special issue
  • Co-teaching and at undergraduate and postgraduate level including developing joint MRes opportunities.

Halmstad University is a medium-sized university located within an hour of Gothenburg, Sweden. The University has traditionally focused on science and engineering but it has a burgeoning research culture in the humanities and social sciences. It has a growing reputation for teaching and research in the digital humanities and it has invested significantly in state-of-the-art technologies and facilities.

For more information on how to apply please contact Dr Charlotte Boyce, Faculty Research Degrees Coordinator (FHSS) at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.