Self-funded PhD opportunities

How can economic growth become more inclusive?

  • Application end date: Applications accepted all year round
  • Funding Availability: Self-funded PhD students only
  • Department: Department of Geography
  • PhD Supervisor: Donald Houston and Carol Ekinsmyth

This proposed PhD research aims to understand why some places and sectors in the economy have grown in more inclusive ways than others. In brief, why are disparities between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have-nots’ lesser in some economically buoyant places/industries than others? It will also identify the contextual and institutional factors conducive to a symbiotic relationship between growth and inclusion. On the basis of the results, the project also aims to make recommendations on how local and regional economic development policy can meet both economic and social goals.

Income inequality has risen sharply in both the global ‘north’ and the global ‘south’. Less-skilled workers and weaker local economies have often been left behind by new rounds of investment. In most developed nations, non-standard employment characterised by precarity is on the rise (casual and temporary employment, contract work, etc). Many feel alienated from a neo-liberal model of economic growth that is perceived to play into the hands of big business. Most nations are richer than ever, yet income and wealth generation is not benefitting everyone.

Government policies to promote inclusion and equality are often feared to compromise economic growth and competitiveness. In contrast, others argue that ‘growth’ and ‘inclusion’ can be complementary goals. In response to these concerns, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has developed the notion of ‘inclusive growth’. Yet remarkably little is known about the circumstances in which economic growth either enhances or damages social inclusion. It is to this question that the proposed studentship is addressed.

Candidates will have a background in human geography, sociology, economics, business and management or a related discipline. The precise nature of the project, its scope and methods (balance between quantitative and qualitative, extensive research or case-study, will depend on the interests and skills of the successful candidate.

Funding notes:

This PhD opportunity is available to self-funded students. Bench fees may apply. For more information please contact the project supervisor.

How to apply:

To apply or make an enquiry, please visit postgraduate research: Geography

All applications should use our standard application forms and follow the instructions given under the ‘Research Degrees’ heading on the following webpages:

When applying please note the project code - GEOG2930217