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Three Social Anthropology PhD Studentships on Hunter-Gatherer Resilience: deadline September 9th 2011 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Gaëtan Juillard   
Monday, 22 August 2011 11:48

UCL's Anthropology Department has been awarded three social anthropology PhD studentships under the Leverhulme's Resilience funding programme for a multidisciplinary project entitled Hunter-gatherers' resilience: Past, present and future adaptations to a world in transition to begin in October 2011. Suitably qualified candidates are invited to apply before the deadline of 4pm 9th September 2011.

Further particulars for applications:

LEVERHULME 4-year MRes/PhD Studentship at UCL (Social Anthropology)

UCL Anthropology is seeking well-qualified applicants to participate in an interdisciplinary Leverhulme funded study entitled Hunter-gatherers'resilience: Past, present and future adaptations to a world in transition.

Hunting and gathering have been the major occupation of humans since homo sapiens emerged (200,000 years ago). Although it has been the longest and most diverse bio-cultural adaptation in humanity's existence, we know very little about the ways in which hunter-gatherers have adapted to pressures and maintained their resilience. Since the early Neolithic and the introduction of agricultural production and animal husbandry around 10,000 years ago, hunting and gathering has been in decline. These new economic practices had profound impacts on human demography, social organisation and technology which appear to have been disadvantageous to hunter-gatherers.

Today there are less than 50 hunter-gatherer populations left in the entire world. Those groups that survive are extraordinary examples of resilience, adapting and evolving their lifestyles over thousands of years, and resisting the recent pressures imposed by expanding populations. Our multi-disciplinary project will bring biological, demographic, behavioural and genetic expertise together with social science approaches to language, music, ideology and oral tradition, to produce evolutionary models that explore the roots of this resilience, the paradox of its rapid extinction, and make policy and practical suggestions for supporting the few remaining hunter-gatherer communities (see UCL website for further information).

These three PhD studentships in Social Anthropology will collect key socio-cultural data on three hunter-gatherer groups, two Pygmy groups in Central Africa and one Negrito group in the Philippines under the principle supervision of Dr Jerome Lewis ( Researchers will be expected to conduct long-term fieldwork and language learning among one particular group of Philippino or African hunter-gatherers while collecting detailed socio-cultural data with a focus on language, music, taboo, myth, cosmology, ritual and religious practice, oral history and relations with neighbouring groups. The candidate will also be expected to work in close collaboration with the 6 other PhD students and 4 post-doctoral researchers in the group to build a multi-disciplinary cross-cultural databank on hunter-gatherer's points of resilience for understanding and supporting their future survival. Suitably qualified candidates holding at least a good 2.1 degree or Masters in Anthropology, Ethnomusicology or other relevant social science discipline may apply. It is desirable that candidates have a broad background in Anthropology, and an interest in biological, genetic and evolutionary approaches to Anthropology

The selection panel will consider applications that submit a full CV and transcript of grades with a one page letter of motivation explaining why the candidate is suitable for this research, why they would like to join this multi-disciplinary research team, and in which region they would prefer to focus their research. Please list two academic referees who will be prepared to e-mail their references direct to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it at short notice, and to follow these up with hard copies.

Please apply by sending CV, transcript, the names and contact details of two academic references and a cover letter outlining your suitability for the studentship to Dr Jerome Lewis ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).

The deadline for applications is 4 pm 9th September 2011.

Interviews will be held 21 September 2011 (in person or by Skype if necessary).

The successful candidates will register for an MPhil/PhD degree with the Anthropology Department at UCL to begin in October 2011.

For further details of postgraduate research and study at UCL please see

For further details of postgraduate research and study at UCL Anthropology please see

Last Updated on Monday, 29 August 2011 13:23

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