Monthly Archives: May 2020

Funded PhD Studentship: U of Bath – Agency and Identity in the Urban Built Environment in the Histories and Heritage of Minority Religious Communities

Closes 30 May, 2020

Lead Supervisor: Dr Robert Proctor (Architecture & Civil Engineering)



The University of Bath and Historic England announce a studentship under the AHRC’s Collaborative Doctoral Partnership scheme. This is an exciting opportunity for a student to develop a project of their own interest within the framework of the project title, with expert guidance and training in academic architectural history and practical architectural heritage and conservation.

Minority communities at an early stage of formation are rarely able to command sufficient resources to build new, architect-designed buildings. This has implications for the heritage value accorded to historic expressions of minority identity, especially of religious buildings, for which heritage criteria are well established. Adaptations of older buildings, improvised or ephemeral forms of spatial organisation, furnishing and embellishment, the use of urban settings for ritual, and self-built structures typify minority expressions of religion in situations of small or scattered populations, poverty and marginalisation. The traces of these architectural interventions may not always persist, and when they do, are not usually accorded value through current heritage processes such as listing, where architectural merit often remains a criterion, especially for twentieth-century buildings. Yet such neglected interventions may be significant to minority communities when they tell their histories and trace their origins through the built environment. This project will explore through case studies the ways in which such expressions occurred in the past and how they might be given greater recognition through heritage practices. The specific minority religions to be investigated are open to the PhD researcher, and may involve a study of one minority religious community, perhaps one of which the student has existing knowledge, or comparative case studies. The project will also look for heritage practices elsewhere in the world that can inform new strategies in this country to heighten public awareness and protection of minority religious heritage in our urban built environment.

THE CDP SCHEME: The CDP partner organisation is Historic England, which will provide joint supervision; specialised training; induction and peer group meetings with other CDP students. Students will be expected to undertake 3 to 6 months of placement at Historic England.

The successful candidate can participate in CDP-organised development events, and will be expected to attend the CDP Student Launch Event on 21 September 2020 at the British Museum.

FUNDING: Funding is for 3.75 years extendable to 4 years. Study may be full-time or part time.

LOCATION: Bath and/or Swindon and/or another location to be determined by agreement.

CANDIDATE: This studentship is open to UK/EU students meeting the AHRC’s academic criteria and UKRI residency requirements ( English language requirements must also be met (

Applicants need a relevant 2.1 or above first degree, Masters-level qualification (achieved or ongoing), or professional experience equivalent to a Masters.

Applicants from diverse backgrounds and/or minority groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

Along with your application, please provide a maximum 400 word statement explaining how your previous academic and/or work experience has prepared you for this project and how you propose to draw on your experience to personalise the PhD, especially through choices of faith, location, etc.

APPLICATIONS: For further information and to apply, visit

Start Date: 1 October 2020