Prospective postgraduates

ERC/UKRI Frontier Research Scholarships: Class Struggle in Ancient Greek Democracy

Information on the ERC/UKRI Frontier Research Scholarships: Class Struggle in Ancient Greek Democracy application process

As a result of the success of the project Class Struggle in Ancient Greek Democracy (ClassDem) in the most recent ERC Consolidator Grant competition, we are pleased to offer two PhD scholarships to be held in the Department of Classics at the University of Edinburgh.


The award will cover Home or international fees and provide an annual stipend at the standard UKRI rate (the UKRI stipend for the academic year 24/25 has now been published on the UKRI website as £19,237) for three and a half years. 

Both PhD positions will be part of the UKRI Frontier Research project, Class Struggle in Ancient Greek Democracy, and supervised by the PI (Prof. Mirko Canevaro) and the core project team (Dr David Lewis and Prof. Douglas Cairns).

The aim of the project is to put class at the centre of the historical reconstruction of Greek democracy – where it belongs. The project contends that class dynamics – grounded in the economic and occupational structures of the Greek cities, and manifesting themselves in the social, political, and cultural oppositions that characterised them – are fundamental for understanding the emergence, nature, and development of Greek democracies. The investigation will cover four main strands: (1) the first strand will investigate the economic underpinnings of class relations in the Greek city-states, with a focus on labour differentiation and labour relations; (2) the second strand will explore the cultural tastes and the social lives of different groups, and how they were structured in opposition to one another; (3) the third strand will tackle how these class oppositions coalesced in distinctive political and institutional preferences; (4) the fourth strand will explore class at the intersection with other axes of social and legal inequality: gender, ethnic origin, slavery.


To be eligible for these scholarships applicants must be able to fulfil the Entry Requirements for the Classics PhD programme at Edinburgh and have the ability to work with ancient Greek sources to an advanced level. Applications must be for the on-campus full-time Classics PhD and not the part-time or PhD by Distance, which are not eligible for funding via these scholarships.


Information on applying for the Classics PhD programme of study

Applications are invited for original PhD projects falling under one (or more) of the project’s core foci. Applicants will design their own projects under the general headings of ClassDem and within the project framework. A major element in the remit of the PhDs will be to provide the detailed and well-documented primary research that will underpin the syntheses to be presented in the project’s core and summative outputs. Candidates must contact Prof. Canevaro ( before applying to discuss ideas for their research projects.


The application process consist of two steps:

  1. Academic (PhD) application
  2. Scholarship application

The deadline for both of these applications is 19 April 2024.

Step One: Academic (PhD) application

Completed PhD admission applications must have been made via the University of Edinburgh online application system by the stated deadline.

Apply for your programme of study

Please note that the funding applications have their own separate timelines and rules for both the study and the scholarship applications which differ from the deadlines generated automatically by the application portal when submitting your study application. This means that all your supporting documentation (research proposal of 1,000-2,000 words, academic references, copies of qualifications/transcripts) must, where available, also be uploaded by the deadline. 

You will need to submit both your undergraduate and postgraduate degree certificates and transcripts in order to be considered for PhD admission. For instructions on how to upload additional documents after you have submitted your application please follow the support guidance available here.

Pending academic references

If you plan to submit your application on or close to the deadline, please liaise closely with your referees to ensure they supply the required reference within 5 working days after the deadline. If referees cannot upload their references into the application portal by this date, they can send them directly to the PGR Office at Incomplete applications will not be considered by the scholarships panel.

Pending degree or English test result

If a degree result or test of English competency is pending we can consider your application and, where appropriate, make you an offer conditional upon supplying these at a later date.

Step Two: Scholarship application

Scholarship applications can be made directly to Prof. Mirko Canevaro ( In order to apply, the applicants will need to email Prof. Canevaro the following documents:

  • a sample (c. 20 pages) of undergraduate or postgraduate writing (e.g. a suitable undergraduate or postgraduate essay or an excerpt from an undergraduate or Master’s dissertation, in English, German, Italian, French, Spanish, or Portuguese);
  • a copy of the research proposal used in the PhD application;
  • a curriculum vitae;
  • undergraduate and postgraduate transcripts.

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for online interviews.


  • PhD application and scholarship application deadline: Friday 19 April 2024, 23:59 UK time