PhD programme

Strathmartine Trust Scottish History Scholarships at the University of Dundee

With the Strathmartine Trust, the School of Humanities, Social Sciences and Law at the University of Dundee is funding doctoral research that engages with the aims and objectives of Eden Project Dundee in advance of its opening in 2025.

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Source of funding

University of Dundee

We seek applicants for two funded doctoral scholarships in Scottish History at the University of Dundee. The funding covers the cost of tuition and provides a stipend for 36 months.*

The Projects

The first Strathmartine Scholarship in Modern Scottish History investigates the Eden Project’s theme of ‘People and the Natural World’. From the mid nineteenth-century, stand-alone associations dedicated to recording, collating and analysing instrument-recorded climate observations did most to embed meteorological science within medical and environmental analysis. Using these data to evaluate the physical and mental health of the people in Victorian Dundee, this project will evaluate the comparative impact of the ‘natural world’, the ‘industrial world’ and the ‘urban world’ on variations in rates of disease, mortality and life expectancy. By examining evidence gathered by contemporary medico-climatologists, including hospital and asylum admissions, along with air quality, diet and epidemiological data, the project examines the public health in the city during the final phase of transition away from pre-industrial temperature levels.

The second Strathmartine Scholarship in Early Modern Scottish History will be focused on a key partner to the Eden Project: The Nine Incorporated Trades of Dundee, a body with roots into the fifteenth century. The trades and the guilds will form the key ‘experience space’ that will enable visitors to the Eden Project to explore the relationship between working lives and the natural and built environment. To meet this theme, the second studentship will investigate the philanthropic activity of the trades in early modern Dundee. It will explore their dealings with the town’s poor and marginalised population, and will place this within the context of urban charity and social care more broadly. The project will be centred on examination (and, ideally, digitisation) of the ‘lockit books’ preserved by the Nine Incorporated Trades of Dundee, but will also take in other relevant records, such as central government records, burgh council minutes, and ecclesiastical registers. By reconstructing the matrix of urban philanthropy in this way, the project will help develop a deeper understanding of civic participation and social inclusion in early modern towns. 

Both projects will benefit from access to locally-held archival collections based in Dundee University Archives and Dundee City Archives.  

*The current 2022/23 tuition fees are £4,596 and the stipend is £15,890.


Entry requirements

  • Full-time study

How to apply

  1. Email Dr Allan Kennedy to
    • Send a copy of your CV
    • Discuss your potential application and any practicalities (e.g. suitable start date).
  2. After discussion with Dr Kennedy, formal applications can be made via our direct application system.

Applications are made through the University of Dundee: University of Dundee: History Research Degrees where the standard entrance requirements are listed. You should have an honours degree at 2.1 or above, and/or a Masters degree in a relevant discipline.

In your research proposal, explain how it relates to your chosen Scholarship project, and highlight the skills and experience you bring.

Mark your application: Strathmartine Trust Scottish History Scholarship

Shortlisted applicants will be called for interview.


The deadline for application is 30 June 2023


Graeme Morton