Diversifying Talent Scholarship Scheme

IAPETUS2 is delighted to announce the introduction of the IAPETUS2 Diversifying Talent Scholarship Scheme. Applications for this scheme are now open.

Application Process

IAPETUS2 is offering two funded postgraduate scholarships in 2024. To apply for an IAPETUS2 Diversifying Talent Scholarship, please follow the guidelines below.

Application Overview
Studentship Competition
How to Apply
Financial Support
Application Flowchart

IAPETUS2 held an online Q&A workshop on Wednesday 22nd November 2023, where the Director outlined the application process and answered pre-submitted questions. A recording of this workshop is available to watch here. (password: 8kn!Gi5I).

Application Overview

To address historical imbalances in the higher education sector, IAPETUS2 is committed to recruiting a diverse, representative community of researchers in Environmental Science. We are guided by the UKRI policies on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, and have developed our own Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion policy to further this.

To apply to the IAPETUS2 Diversifying Talent Scholarship Scheme, all applicants must be eligible for Home fees (please see Eligibility criteria here) and from either or both of a UK Minoritized Ethnic group or a lower socio-economic background.

The IAPETUS2 Diversifying Talent Scholarship Scheme does not require applicants to select a project to apply to, but rather applicants are assessed based on the responses they provide in the application form generally, their CV, their academic transcripts and two references. If you are successfully recruited, then you will be able to select supervisors with whom to create a PhD project, based on their interests and your interactions with them.

All applicants must complete both the online Scholarship Scheme Application Form and the online Scholarship Scheme EDI form by 5th January 2024 at 12 midday (GMT). You must also submit a copy of your 2-page CV and academic transcripts by the same deadline and request that two referees submit references to IAPETUS2 on your behalf by 12th January 2024 at 12 midday (GMT). If you are shortlisted for an interview, you will be contacted by the 29th of January 2024 by 5pm.

If successful at interview, scholarship applicants select the area of research and create a project with a supervisory team in two of the IAPETUS2 institutions.

Studentship Competition

The IAPETUS2 Studentship Competition is another opportunity to apply for PhD funding. If you would be interested in applying to a particular project, then you may also apply to the Studentship Competition. Please note, however, that although the Studentship Competition runs concurrently with the Scholarship Scheme, it is a separate competition with different deadlines and processes. Consequently, if you are keen to apply for both opportunities, you will need to understand the different applicant obligations. For more information about the Studentship Competition, please see here.


All applicants need to meet NERC’s eligibility criteria to be considered for an IAPETUS2 scholarship and these are detailed in the current UKRI studentship terms and conditions.

To be eligible for the IAPETUS2 Diversifying Talent Scholarship Scheme, applicants must:

  • be eligible for a UKRI Home fees award
    and at least one of the following
  • identify as being from a UK minoritized ethnic group.
  • The postcode where you went to secondary school or grew up (in the UK) is classified as Quintile 1 in the POLAR4 category of the following website:
  • You were eligible for free school meals when attending school.
  • Your parents / guardians did not have a degree when you finished secondary school.

Our scholarships can be part-time if that mode of study is more appropriate for your circumstances.

How to Apply

By the deadline of Friday 5th January 2024, 12 midday (GMT), applicants must have completed the three following steps:

  1. Please complete the online IAPETUS2 Diversifying Talent Scholarship Scheme Application Form.

    The application form is designed to provide us with the information we need to evaluate your application. We know that successful PhD students come from a wide range of backgrounds and with widely differing experience. By using the form, we can best evaluate your past achievements and potential for PhD research in the context of any past opportunities or barriers you may have faced. Our aim is to help you demonstrate your potential and make the best possible case for your future career in the environmental sciences.

    We recommend that you use the template above to enter and edit your supporting information in good time before the application deadline, and then use it to copy and paste the information required into the online form. Please note that we can only accept applications via the online form, and you should NOT send the completed template document to us. Once you have completed the online scholarship application form, you will be given a Confirmation Reference Number.

  2. Please email your 2-page CV and academic transcripts to contact.iapetus@durham.ac.uk. Please use the Confirmation Reference Number from the application form submission, along with your last name in the subject line of the email in the format [Confirmation Reference Number], [Last Name].

  3. Please complete the online Scholarship Scheme EDI form. The data in this form will only be used for general statistical and monitoring purposes and will in no way be taken into account when assessing your application. Those shortlisting and recruiting will not see this information.

Applicants must request references from two referees. The applicant must notify the referees of the research areas they will select on questions 34 & 35 of the Scholarship Scheme Application Form, and they must ask the referees to complete the Scholarship Scheme Reference Form and submit directly to contact.iapetus@durham.ac.uk by no later the Friday 12th January 2024, 12 midday (GMT).

If you are uncertain about any of the elements of the application form, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at contact.iapetus@durham.ac.uk. The DTP Manager will respond to your questions; the manager is not involved in the decision-making part of the evaluation process for the Scholarship Scheme.

Financial Support

IAPETUS2’s postgraduate scholarships are tenable for up to 3.5 years and provide the following package of financial support:

  • A tax-free maintenance grant set at the UK Research Council’s national rate, which in 2023/24 is £18,622.
  • Payment of tuition fees at the Home rate;
  • Access to extensive research support funding; &
  • Support for an external placement of up to six months.

Part-time award-holders are funded for seven years and receive a maintenance grant at 50% of the full-time rate.

Application Flowchart

We would like to thank colleagues at CENTA DTP for sharing best practice with us.


Unfortunately IAPETUS2 needs all references in by the deadline of Friday 12th January 2024 at 12 midday (GMT) because after this time, the Scholarship Scheme applications will be scored and ranked. If one of your references isn’t sent in by the deadline, your application will be scored and ranked without the missing reference, so you might be at a disadvantage. We would encourage you to request a reference from a different referee.

Yes, all the Studentship Competition and Scholarship run concurrently, they are separate competitions and if you are eligible for both, you are welcome to apply for both. Please just ensure you know the deadlines and processes for each, ensuring you complete the right forms for each.

Key Dates
October 27, 2023
IAPETUS2 Scholarship Scheme applications open
November 22, 2023
Online Application Process and Q&A workshop for the Studentship Competition & Scholarship Scheme
January 5, 2024
Deadline for Scholarship Scheme applicants to apply
January 12, 2024
Deadline for Scholarship Scheme references to be received
January 29, 2024
Scholarship Scheme applicants will be informed whether they have been shortlisted for interview
February 27, 2024
Interviews of Scholarship Scheme shortlisted applicants [All Day]
February 28, 2024
Interviews of Scholarship Scheme shortlisted applicants [All Morning]
February 28, 2024
IAPETUS2 Studentship & Scholarship Panel convenes
March 1, 2024
Scholarship Scheme applicants notified of IAPETUS2 award decisions
March 20, 2024
NERC Universal Acceptance Date
March 21, 2024
Scholarship Scheme reserve offers made
March 21, 2024
Scholarship Scheme applicants work with supervisors of their choice to create a PhD project
May 31, 2024
Deadline for Scholarship Scheme applicants to agree a PhD project and supervisory team
May 31, 2024
Deadline for Scholarship Scheme applicants to submit a PhD application to the Awarding University