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Key information

Award:
PhD
MPhil
Study mode:
Full time
Part time
Campus:
Strand Campus
Duration:
Expected to be three years full-time, four – six years part-time.

Overview

The Policy Institute works to solve society’s challenges with evidence and expertise, combining the rigour of an academic department with the agility of a consultancy and the connectedness of a think tank.

The institute has a reputation for conducting impactful research that shapes media and public debate and the policy environment. This PhD Programme in Applied Public Policy will train the next generation of researchers to conduct this kind of impact-focused public policy research. The programme offers you the opportunity to study public policy as it is happening in the real world. It will offer opportunities to explore how policy can be influenced, and whether interventions in public policy are effective.

The Policy Institute is based in the Faculty of Social Science and Public Policy (SSPP), which seeks to understand global, social, technological, and economic transformations changes and to inform these through education and research.

Applied Public Policy doctoral students are supervised by academic staff in the Policy Institute. We recommend that prospective students read through the PI webpages to find their preferred research area and potential supervisors.

 

Course detail

The PhD in Applied Public Policy focuses on training researchers to study public policy as it is happening in the real world. It offers opportunities to explore how policy can be influenced, and whether interventions in public policy are effective.

PhD students will learn the use of causal methods in statistics and econometrics, including randomised controlled trials and quasi-experimental designs, to study social policy questions, including in education, child and adult safeguarding, health and social care, youth employment, criminology and justice, mental health and wellbeing, and behavioural economics.

Alongside this, doctoral students will receive comprehensive training and supervision in the underlying theories in public policy, economics, sociology, and other relevant fields to their domain(s) of study.

This kind of research has clear policy impacts, but is also increasingly valuable from an academic perspective, with randomised trials, quasi-experimental methods, multi-methods studies, and behavioural economics being increasingly utilised across a wide range of fields, and increasingly being published in high-impact journals in economics, psychology, public policy, social policy, health and care research, and political science. Doctoral students will be equipped to critically examine the use and appropriateness of these methods.

Alongside quantitative methods, doctoral students will also use qualitative methods including interviews, focus groups, and ethnography, and the use of deliberative methods (such as citizens’ assemblies) both as a method of research to study public policy and their use as a tool for designing and conducting it. 

Head of group/division

Professor Michael Sanders and Dr Kate Bancroft

Candidates can also email policyinstitute-education@kcl.ac.uk.

UK Tuition Fees 2023/24

Full time tuition fees: £6,540 per year

Part time tuition fees: £3,270 per year

International Tuition Fees 2023/24

Full time tuition fees: £24,360 per year

Part time tuition fees: £12,180 per year

These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King's terms and conditions

Base campus

strand-quad
Strand Campus

Located on the north bank of the River Thames, the Strand Campus houses King's College London's arts and sciences faculties.

Study Environment

Each student has two supervisors and meets regularly with both, though typically more frequently with the primary supervisor. They are encouraged to attend relevant research seminars at King’s and elsewhere and to and to participate in the wide variety of conferences and events on offer at King’s.

The Policy Institute offers training opportunities for students, for example through the institute’s Methods Club, Evaluation seminars, training focused on analytical coding and a wide variety of research fora. They will also be able to participate in training from across the LISS Doctoral Training Partnership.

Impact will be at the centre of the students’ experience in the Policy Institute, and they be able to attend and be part of events featuring the Institute’s visiting faculty which include current and former ministers and senior officials including the current Cabinet Secretary.

Alongside this, students will benefit from the Institute’s close connections with other academic departments, being able to attend regular seminar series across King’s. 

Postgraduate training

Students graduating from this programme will be employable in a range of academic, research, and applied roles. Previous graduates of this programme’s predecessors have gone on to work in the civil service; to pursue academic careers including postdoctoral studies at the European University Institute and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government; and to work in the government’s network of What Works Centres.

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UK Tuition Fees 2023/24

Full time tuition fees: £6,540 per year

Part time tuition fees: £3,270 per year

International Tuition Fees 2023/24

Full time tuition fees: £24,360 per year

Part time tuition fees: £12,180 per year

These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King's terms and conditions

Base campus

strand-quad
Strand Campus

Located on the north bank of the River Thames, the Strand Campus houses King's College London's arts and sciences faculties.

Study Environment

Each student has two supervisors and meets regularly with both, though typically more frequently with the primary supervisor. They are encouraged to attend relevant research seminars at King’s and elsewhere and to and to participate in the wide variety of conferences and events on offer at King’s.

The Policy Institute offers training opportunities for students, for example through the institute’s Methods Club, Evaluation seminars, training focused on analytical coding and a wide variety of research fora. They will also be able to participate in training from across the LISS Doctoral Training Partnership.

Impact will be at the centre of the students’ experience in the Policy Institute, and they be able to attend and be part of events featuring the Institute’s visiting faculty which include current and former ministers and senior officials including the current Cabinet Secretary.

Alongside this, students will benefit from the Institute’s close connections with other academic departments, being able to attend regular seminar series across King’s. 

Postgraduate training

Students graduating from this programme will be employable in a range of academic, research, and applied roles. Previous graduates of this programme’s predecessors have gone on to work in the civil service; to pursue academic careers including postdoctoral studies at the European University Institute and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government; and to work in the government’s network of What Works Centres.

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Key information

Award:
PhD
MPhil
Study mode:
Full time
Part time
Campus:
Strand Campus
Duration:
Expected to be three years full-time, four – six years part-time.

Contact us

For more information regarding our courses please contact us using the details below

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