PhD Studentship: Exhibition Design at the British Museum: Histories and Legacies with the University of Brighton and the British Museum

University of Brighton and The British Museum

AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Partnership Studentship Award

Exhibition Design at the British Museum: Histories and Legacies

Applications are invited for a funded collaborative studentship to research exhibition design practice at the British Museum. The award is made under the AHRC’s Collaborative Doctoral Partnership Scheme and will be co-hosted by the Centre for Design History at the University of Brighton and the British Museum. The project, to begin in October 2019, will be supervised Dr Claire Wintle, University of Brighton, Jane Bennett, Senior Project Manager, Exhibitions, British Museum, and Stuart Frost, Head of Interpretation & Volunteers, British Museum. The successful applicant will benefit from a unique opportunity to undertake a 6-month placement in the Exhibitions department at the British Museum to support their understanding of how the history of exhibition design at the British Museum has influenced contemporary practice.

The studentship can be studied either full or part time and the project is due to begin October 2019.

The Project:

This collaborative project considers how museum exhibition design practice has emerged and adapted since its initial formalisation in the mid-twentieth century. Focusing on the British Museum’s renowned Design Office (est. 1964), this project will examine the events and shifts that have taken place in museum exhibition design practice since these beginnings, as well as their influence today. Setting the development of the BM’s Design Office in the context of national and international design, the project will consider how exhibition design has shaped and been shaped by changing structures of professionalisation, government regulation and technology. What, it will ask, can a better understanding of the history of museum exhibition design practice mean for current and future museums?

For a full description of the project, see:

The Award:

Subject to AHRC eligibility criteria, the award will cover tuition fees and a standard AHRC grant (stipend) towards living expenses for 3 years full time or 7 years part time. This studentship includes further funding for a six-month placement with the Exhibitions department at the British Museum.

Applicants must satisfy AHRC eligibility requirements and should normally have a Masters degree or equivalent professional experience. Familiarity with museums, exhibition design, and archival research is essential. Academic experience in the history of design is desirable.

The deadline for applications is 5pm Thursday 7 May 2019.

Interviews will be held in London on May 17 2019.

The successful candidate will be required to attend a full day induction in London on 12 September 2019.

For further details of eligibility and how to apply, see:

Informal enquires can be made, or further details about the research project’s scope discussed, by contacting Dr Claire Wintle ( or Jane Bennett ( ).

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