PhD at the Warburg Institute
University of London, School of Advanced Study
London, United Kingdom
Distance Learning, On-Campus
3 - 6 years
Full time, Part time
GBP 6,130 / per year *
30 Nov 2023
Earliest start date
08 Jan 2024
* home, full-time | £15500: international, full-time. fees vary depending on mode of study and fee status. please visit our website for updated fees
Undertaking doctoral research allows you to develop in-depth knowledge while making a meaningful contribution to your chosen field.
With guidance from our expert supervisors, you'll carry out extensive independent research culminating in a thesis of up to 100,000 words. Broadly speaking the area covered by the Institute’s expertise is cultural and intellectual history in the period 1200–1700, but there are a range of specific research interests covered by members of staff who currently offer supervision.
This degree presents the opportunity to gain expertise in your area of interest while also honing a range of transferable skills. On completing this course, you'll be well prepared for specialist career paths both within academia and beyond.
The Warburg Institute is one of the world’s leading centers for studying the interaction of ideas, images, and society. It is dedicated to the survival and transmission of culture across time and space, with special emphasis on the afterlife of antiquity.
The resources of the Institute are especially geared to students interested in interdisciplinary study, including the Archive, Photographic Collection, and open-stack Library with its unique cataloging system specifically designed by Aby Warburg to aid research.
The Warburg Institute
The Warburg Institute is one of the world’s leading centers for studying the interaction of ideas, images, and society. It is dedicated to the survival and transmission of culture across time and space, with a special emphasis on the afterlife of antiquity. Its open-stack Library, Photographic Collection, and Archive serve as an engine for interdisciplinary research, postgraduate teaching, and a prestigious events and publication program.
The School of Advanced Study
The School of Advanced Study at the University of London brings together eight internationally renowned research institutes to form the UK's national center for the support of researchers and the promotion of research in the humanities.
Scholarships and Funding
Our students fund their studies in a variety of ways including scholarships, bursaries, and fellowships, as well as government loans and postgraduate loans.
We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries that you don't need to pay back and are awarded based on personal circumstances or academic achievement. Funding at the postgraduate level is competitive so it’s a good idea to plan financially before starting your course.
- The London Arts and Humanities Partnership Studentship
- University of London Scholars Awards
- Yusuf Ali Scholarship offered by the Institute of Commonwealth Studies
- Stefania Barichello International Travel Bursary
- JB Trapp Scholarship offered by the Warburg Institute
- Rubinstein Scholarship offered by the Warburg Institute
The Warburg Institute offers doctoral research supervision in the following areas:
- Renaissance Art, Architecture, and Visual Culture
- Cultural and Intellectual History
- Reception of the Classics
- History of Magic and Science
- History of Cartography and Cosmography
- Religious History
- History of the Book
Before submitting an application you are advised to contact a member of the Warburg academic staff who has interests in your proposed field of study to discuss your proposal. A list of academic staff and their interests can be found below in the Supervisors section.
Full-time study for the Ph.D. degree entails three or a maximum of four years of independent research, culminating in the writing of a thesis of not more than 100,000 words. Part-time students complete the same program in five, or a maximum of six years.
After submission of the thesis, you will attend an oral examination conducted by an internal examiner, from the University of London, and an external examiner, normally from another British university.
There is no formal coursework, but you will be expected to participate in a weekly seminar on Work in Progress and to present a paper every year from your second year onwards. In your first year, you are required to attend a weekly class on Techniques of Scholarship. You are also encouraged to participate in the regular seminars held at the Institute during the academic year.
Program Tuition Fee
The resources available at the Institute are especially geared to students interested in interdisciplinary study, including the Archive,(Opens in new window) Photographic Collection(Opens in new window), and open-stack Library(Opens in new window) with its unique cataloging system specifically designed by Aby Warburg to aid research. The Institute’s Library is classified as one of the ‘20 Libraries that Changed the World'(Opens in new window).
Through the Institute’s research projects, events and fellowship programs, and informal collegiate atmosphere, students have extensive opportunities for networking with the international community of scholars who use the Warburg Institute as their base. This significantly enriches Warburg students’ learning experience and can provide ideal networking connections for their future careers.
More broadly, the School of Advanced Study itself offers excellent resources for interdisciplinary research by bringing together eight internationally renowned research institutes that support the promotion of research in the humanities.
The School of Advanced Study is also home to Senate House Library(Opens in new window), the central library for the University of London. The Art Deco building, which the School and Senate House Library are part of, is a literary landmark in the heart of Bloomsbury, located next to the British Museum. The Library occupies the fourth to the nineteenth floors of the building, with a range of historic library reading rooms and collections.
Much like the Warburg Institute itself, the School offers a broad range of events, seminars, and conferences(Opens in a new window) that we encourage our research students to engage with. Our research students can also take advantage of a varied and challenging research training program, with general research skills training and research methodologies courses provided through the School and subject-specific training provided within the institutes.
Looking ahead to your future career, a Ph.D. at Warburg will open many doors. Warburg alumni have continued their academic careers at institutions across the globe, including the Universities of Cambridge, Copenhagen, Notre Dame (US), Padua, UCL, Birkbeck, La Sapienza (Rome), Warwick, York and Yeshiva (New York). Our graduates have also gone into positions at cultural institutions such as the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, the Bayerische Akademie, the National Library, Argentina, Sotheby's, Arts Council England, the National Gallery, the V&A, and the Southbank Centre.