Graduate Self-employment and Entrepreneurship in the Creative Economy
PhDs and postgraduate research
Self-funded PhD students only
School of the Environment, Geography and Geosciences
October and February
Applications accepted all year round
The Portsmouth Creative Census 2016 suggests that more than 30% of creative businesses in Portsmouth are owned by University of Portsmouth graduates. On this PhD programme, you'll research the career trajectories of creative graduates, and understand the experiences of creative self employment/entrepreneurship in a mid-sized city.
The work will involve:
- using quantitative and qualitative research methods to build a picture of the career trajectories of creative graduates
- building detailed portraits of graduate experiences of creative self-employment or entrepreneurship in a mid-sized city such as Portsmouth
- improving your research experience and skills
Graduates are entering the economy at a time of disruption, when technologies such as The Cloud, social media and Big Data are changing who can do what work, and where. This includes the ability to take on self-employment, which has risen rapidly to around 15% of all employment in the UK (Taylor, 2015; D’Arcy and Gardiner, 2014)
The prediction is that self-employed or portfolio careers will become the norm, especially in creative sectors (Gill and Pratt, 2008). There's also speculation that the typical self-employed worker is female, middle-class, home-based, low-earning and economically marginal (Ekinsmyth 2013; Taylor, 2015; Luckman, 2015).
Your research will investigate the career and personal journeys for graduates that lead to self-employment, or the roles of gender, family and geographical mobility.
Fees and funding
Funding Availability: Self-funded PhD students only
PhD full-time and part-time courses are eligible for the UK Government Doctoral Loan (UK and EU students only).
2020/2021 entry (for October 2020 and February 2021 entries)
Home/EU/CI full-time students: £4,407 p/a
Home/EU/CI part-time students: £2,204 p/a
International full-time students: £16,400 p/a
International part-time students: £8,200 p/a
PhD by Publication
External candidates £4,407 p/a
Members of staff £1,680 p/a*
2021/2022 entry (for October 2021 and February 2022 entries)
PhD and MPhil
Home/EU/CI full-time students: £4,407 p/a*
Home/EU/CI part-time students: £2,204 p/a*
International full-time students: £17,600 p/a
International part-time students: £8,800 p/a
All fees are subject to annual increase.
PhD by Publication
External Candidates £4,407 p/a*
Members of Staff £1,720 p/a*
If you are an EU student starting a programme in 2021/22 please visit this page.
*This is the 2020/21 UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) maximum studentship fee; this fee will increase to the 2021/22 UKRI maximum studentship fee when UKRI announces this rate in Spring 2021.
Some PhD projects may include additional fees – known as bench fees – for equipment and other consumables, and these will be added to your standard tuition fee. Speak to the supervisory team during your interview about any additional fees you may have to pay. Please note, bench fees are not eligible for discounts and are non-refundable.
- A good first degree from an internationally recognised university (depending on the course, minimum second class or equivalent) or a Master’s degree in an appropriate subject
- Exceptionally, equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications will be considered
- English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0
- All applicants are subject to interview
You'll need a background in Geography or a cognate discipline such as Sociology, Social Psychology, Business, Organisation or Communication Studies. An interest in gender theory would be an advantage. Experience with social research methods is desirable, you'll get training.
How to Apply
To make an enquiry about this project, get in touch with the PhD Supervisor for this programme, Dr Carol Ekinsmyth, email@example.com, or Dr Donald Houston, firstname.lastname@example.org, quoting the project code GEOG1241015 and title.
When you are ready to apply, you can use our online application form. Make sure you submit a personal statement, proof of your degrees and grades, details of two referees, proof of your English language proficiency and an up-to-date CV.
You can also visit our How to Apply pages to get a better understanding of how the PhD application process works.