Graduate Research

Funding & Scholarships

There are a number of different scholarships available to fund your PhD. All are awarded on the basis of academic excellence and are competitive.

Each requires a different application process and deadline so please do read the following information carefully and adhere to the deadlines specified. No late applications will be accepted. See the below links for details of the different scholarships available.








Faculty Research Scholarships


All successful applicants to the UCL Laws PhD programme are automatically considered for our prestigious Faculty Research Scholarships (FRS), awarded directly by the faculty. There is no separate application form. These scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic excellence, research potential and research area. Candidates must have an outstanding academic track record, an excellent research proposal and strong references as competition for these scholarships is high.

A UCL Laws FRS covers the cost of tuition fees, plus a maintenance stipend per annum for full time study. The stipend for 2017/18 is £18,000 per annum. Costs are pro-rated for part-time students.

Awards are made initially for one year but will be renewed for a second year, subject to satisfactory completion of studies during your first year. They will be renewed for a third year, provided the student has been upgraded to full PhD status and continues to make satisfactory progress in the programme. Scholarships may be held with a Teaching Fellowship or other salaried position in the faculty.

To be considered you must have submitted a complete application by the general MPhil/PhD Laws admissions deadline.

There are four Faculty Research Scholarships available, each named after distinguished legal figures associated with the Faculty.

Orme Scholarship: Eliza Orme was the first woman to earn a law degree in England, graduating from UCL with an LLB in 1888. This followed UCL’s groundbreaking decision to become the first UK university to permit women on an equal footing to men, in 1878. While women at the time were not permitted to qualify as a barrister or solicitor, Orme made a career drafting legal documents from her office in Chancery Lane. She was also involved in the National Society for Women’s Suffrage.

Lawrence Scholarship: Reina Lawrence was London’s first woman councillor. After receiving her LLB from UCL in 1893, Lawrence served on the Hampstead Distress Committee, helping the unemployed, before the Qualification of Women Act 1907 opened the way for female candidates in council elections. Lawrence stood for Hampstead Borough Council and was elected for the Belsize Ward with a large majority.

Clarke Scholarship: Ellis Clarke graduated from UCL Laws in 1940, being called to the Bar at Gray’s Inn the following year. Clarke returned to his native Trinidad and Tobago and served as a lawyer and, following that country’s independence from Britain, in a number of government posts including Ambassador to the United States and Ambassador to the UN. Knighted in 1963, Sir Ellis was instrumental in drafting a new republican constitution for Trinidad and Tobago and following its adoption was appointed President, serving in that capacity from 1976 to 1987.

Elias Scholarship: Taslim Olawale Elias graduated from UCL with an LLB in 1946, being called to the bar at the Inner Temple the following year. Elias completed his LLM and PhD at UCL, becoming the first African to earn a PhD in Law from the University of London in 1949. In the run up to Nigerian independence in 1960, Elias played a key role in drafting the constitution and on its adoption was appointed Attorney General and Minister of Justice. In 1972 he became Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, and served in a number of important international roles including Chairman of the UN International Law Commission, and helping to draft the Constitutions of the Congo and the Organisation of African Unity (forerunner to the African Union). In 1976 he was appointed a judge at the International Court of Justice in the Hague, becoming its President in 1982.

IBIL Intellectual Property Scholarship – New PhD Scholarship for 2018/19


The UCL Laws Institute of Brand and Innovation Law is offering a new scholarship in 2018/19. The scholarship will fund one PhD student to undertake research in the field of Intellectual Property, and will provide a stipend of £18,000 per year for 3 years. Fees at the Home/EU rate are covered (the scholarship is open to international students as well; if successful, an international student would receive a discount on the international fees equivalent to the value of the Home/EU fees, and would need to cover the difference with their own funds)
All applicants to the UCL Laws PhD Programme in the field of Intellectual Property will be considered for the scholarship. The applications period runs from September to November each year – to put yourself forward for the scholarship, simply submit an application to the programme by following the admissions instructions on our admissions web page:
For more information about the Institute for Brand and Innovation Law, including a list of academic staff open to supervising PhD research, please see the Institute website:
The Institute of Brand and Innovation Law would like to thank its sponsors for their generosity, which has made this scholarship possible. Please see a list of our sponsors here:

UCL Graduate Research Scholarships


UCL Graduate Research Scholarships (GRS) aim to attract high-quality students to undertake research at UCL. The university usually awards approximately 20 UCL GRS annually to prospective and current UCL research students from any country. These are highly competitive scholarships and are awarded only to the most outstanding potential and exiting research students from all UCL departments and faculties, of which Laws is only The scholarships consist of fees equivalent to the standard postgraduate UK/EU rate (2015/16: £4,635) plus a maintenance stipend (2015/16: £16,057) for full-time study (benefits are calculated ‘pro rata’ for part-time students). The scholarship also includes additional research costs at a level up to £1,000 per year for the stated duration of the programme. Awards are normally tenable for years 1, 2, and 3 of a full-time research degree programme.

The UCL Laws PhD Scholarship Team is responsible for determining which individuals to put forward to the university for a GRS, and it chooses from amongst all successful PhD applicants and existing students. This decision is made in January, and is based solely on academic merit. Those selected to be put forward to UCL to be considered for a GRS will be notified straight after PhD application decisions are made, at which point the nominee will need to submit an application and will be assisted in this by the Laws PhD Office. So there is no action required at the time of applying to the PhD programme.

Peter Birks Scholarship


All successful applicants who plan to research private law will be automatically considered for the Peter Birks memorial scholarship made available by a generous anonymous donation to the faculty. Three scholarships were previously awarded and we are grateful for an additional donation that has allowed us to offer up to three further scholarships for 2017/18.

Peter Birks (1941-2004) was an outstanding legal scholar, best known for this prolific and influential writings on the law of unjust enrichment but also known for his work on the classification of private law. Peter Birks studied for the LLM at UCL and later returned as a lecturer from 1971-81. He maintained his links with the faculty for many years after through teaching and public lectures. We are proud to honour and celebrate his memory with these scholarships.

The Peter Birks scholarship is worth £10,000 per annum, with an additional £8,000 per annum provided by the Faculty of Laws and a fee waiver for successful candidates. Up to three scholarships will be awarded for 2017/18. The scholarship will be awarded on the basis of academic merit for students undertaking research in private law, broadly defined as any comparative, doctrinal, historical or theoretical treatment of any aspect of obligations or property law.

Awards will initially be made for one year but will be renewed for the subsequent two years subject to satisfactory progress.

London Arts and Humanities Partnership (LAHP) and Arts and Humanities Research Council Scholarship


The AHRC-funded London Arts & Humanities Doctoral Training Partnership are funding a number of research studentships in 2016-17. These studentships, which normally cover fees and maintenance allowance (stipend), are available only to UK and EU students.

Candidates should be aware that the LAHP studentship competition is a twin-track process, and they will need to:

1. Apply for a place of study on their chosen PhD programme at one of the LAHP partner institutions, and
2. Apply separately and directly to LAHP for a studentship.

Please see for further information and guidance on the application process.

The deadline for LAHP scholarship applications will be 29th January 2017. For more information please see the LAHP website as LAHP runs this process themselves, it is not run by the Faculty of Laws.

Frederick Bonnart-Braunthal Scholarship


The Frederick Bonnart-Braunthal Scholarship supports students who plan to explore the nature of religious, racial and cultural prejudices and to find ways to combat them. The scheme does not run every year and will not be running in 2016-17. When the scheme is running, the scholarship is open to one student from any department or faculty in UCL. It has a value of £25,000 per annum, tenable for years 1, 2 and 3 of an MPhil/PhD subject to annual renewal.

When the scheme is running applications are made directly to the UCL Student Funding Office. More details can be found on the scholarship website here.

Joseph Hume Scholarship


One scholarship worth £1,600 is available for prospective LLM students or prospective and current MPhil/PhD research students at UCL Laws. This scholarship is awarded on the basis of academic merit and research potential.

Your cover letter should include why you are applying for this fund, what makes you a suitable candidate and if you are in receipt of any other funding. Your letter should not be longer than one side of A4.

Applications for this scheme open on 1 January 2017 and the deadline for applications is 1st March 2017.

To apply for this scholarship, please send a copy of your CV, a covering letter and a reference letter to