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PhD opportunities

Postgraduate researchers have access to Kew’s world-renowned collections of living and preserved plant materials and its botanical library and illustrations, as well as to the excellent laboratory facilities.
A scientist at work at the Millennium Seed Bank
A scientist at work at the Millennium Seed Bank

PhD projects

Postgraduate students work alongside highly experienced botanists, conservationists and horticulturists, with expertise in studying the world’s diverse plant families. All of Kew’s PhD projects are undertaken in collaboration with a partner university, either in the UK or in another part of the world. Each student has at least two supervisors, one from Kew and one from the partner university.

As an Affiliated Research Centre of the Open University, Kew has enabled several of its own staff to undertake PhD projects, related to their ongoing work programmes.

Most of Kew’s postgraduate studentships are funded as part of specific research projects. Kew staff also supervise other postgraduate students, who are developing project ideas relevant to the science teams, and have full funding (such as Marie Curie Fellowships, Leonardo da Vinci Scholarships or Commonwealth Scholarships).

Doctoral Training Partnerships

In November 2013, NERC announced a £100 million investment in training environmental science PhD students under a Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) scheme. Kew is a named partner for DTPs offered by Imperial College London, Oxford University and by the London NERC DTP consortium, which includes UCL (administrative lead); Birkbeck, University of London; Brunel University; Queen Mary, University of London; ZSL Institute of Zoology; Kings College London; Royal Holloway, University of London; and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

For further information on the London NERC Doctoral Training Partnership see: 

For further information on Oxford University’s Doctoral Training Partnership in Environmental Research see: 

For further information on the Imperial College London DTP see: