ESRC CASE PhD studentship: Proximities of Care: Exploring the spatial relations of voluntary and technological support for those living with dementia


The University of Liverpool and North West Doctoral Training Centre (NWDTC) invite applications from suitably qualified students for the following fully funded ESRC CASE PhD studentship: Proximities of Care: Exploring the spatial relations of voluntary and technological support for those living with dementia

This studentship is a collaboration between the Universities of Liverpool and Lancaster and PSS (

The overall aim of this studentship is to explore the spatial interrelations of care in the context of increasing reliance on both voluntary and technological provision of care within the UK. It will do so through a case study of PSS (Person Shaped Support), a registered charity and social enterprise based in Liverpool which has been providing community based support, both locally and nationally, for almost a century. An ageing population within the UK alongside cuts to welfare funding and the reorganization of the NHS is resulting in increasing reliance on both voluntary care provision and tele-care and remote communications in supporting people living with dementia. Both of these trends are reflected in PSS’s work. This studentship will explore these with attention to the changing spatial interrelations of care, present in the delivery of care through proximate relations between those who are (initially) strangers, and through the use of technology that allows care at a distance. Methodologically the PhD will involve participant observation in voluntary programmes, interviews, focus groups and diary methods with those living with dementia, their families and carers.

Further details on the research are available here:

The studentship is available to cover UK/EU fees and an annual Research Council maintenance grant. Rates for the academic year 2014-15 will be as follows (subject to confirmation from the ESRC): Maintenance Grant £14,210.

Further details on eligibility, including residential eligibility are available here. (Although, please note that the application process for CASE awards is different to that detailed in this document – please contact the people identified below for more information).

The student would be based in the Department of Geography and Planning at the University of Liverpool and supervised by Dr. Bethan Evans and Dr Mark Riley, with co-supervision from Prof. Christine Milligan (Director of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Ageing Research at Lancaster University), and Sinead Martin (PSS).

This award is available on a +3 basis only. In addition to having a 1st class or 2i undergraduate degree in (human) geography or related social science subject (sociology, politics, social policy, etc), candidates must also hold a Masters degree (or be close to completion) with sufficient research methods training to enable PhD study. Experience of research or voluntary work with older people or those living with dementia would be desirable.

For more information and details on how to apply please contact Dr. Bethan Evans ( The deadline for applications is Monday 17th February 2014. Interviews will be held on Tuesday 25th February 2014.

National Student Award Winner

Lisa Reilly, a current Yr3 BSc Geography student, has been successful in winning the top award from the P1 Marine Foundation to continue with her research on abiotic controls on the nesting success of Loggerhead Turtles on Kefalonia and Alonissos, Greece. Lisa undertook her dissertation research on this theme during her summer volunteer work with the Katelios Group, collecting ecological and environmental data to examine linkages between hatching success and nest position, beach grain size and sediment geochemistry. Her successful application to develop this work further will see Lisa analyzing data from the Katelios Group, the National Marine Park of Alonissos and ARCHELON in a GIS to enhance marine conservation practice by investigating temporal trends in environmental and ecological parameters.

Lisa will receive her prize of £1000 at a presentation evening on the 6th February at The Royal Institution of Great Britain. Attending the event will be representatives of the P1 Marine Foundation, a number of leading environmentalists and academics from universities around the UK. Lisa will be presenting a talk on her proposed research at the event.

Many congratulations!