Institution (Location)
MRC Epidemiology Unit: University of Cambridge
Start Date
November 1, 2022
Position Description

The MRC Epidemiology Unit is excited to announce the availability of PhD student places. We investigate the causes and prevention of diabetes, obesity and related metabolic disorders. PhD students are encouraged to develop and conduct their own research relevant to any of the department’s nine research programmes:

  •   Aetiology and Mechanisms of Diabetes and Related Metabolic Disorders of Later Life
  •   Early Life Aetiology and Mechanisms of Diabetes and Related Metabolic Disorders
  •   Nutritional Epidemiology
  •   Physical Activity Epidemiology
  •   Behavioural Epidemiology and Interventions in Young People
  •   Prevention of Diabetes and Related Metabolic Disorders in High Risk Groups
  •   Population Health Interventions
  •   Public Health Modelling
  •   Global Diet and Physical Activity Research

Candidate’s Qualifications (who should apply)

We invite applicants to contact potential supervisors directly to discuss your research interests. A list of available PhD projects is provided at Alternatively, you are welcome to formulate your own PhD topic, coherent with the overall goal of the Unit and any of our programmes.

The MRC Epidemiology Unit ( is a department in the University of Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine. We investigate the causes and prevention of diabetes, obesity and related metabolic disorders. Our programmes cover a wide scope of research designs and skills, including the aetiology and mechanisms of diabetes and related metabolic disorders using: large-scale genomics, proteomics and metabolomics resources; objective and self-report measures of nutrition and physical activity; and informing and evaluating individual and public health approaches to disease prevention drawing on behavioural and social science with a focus on physical activity and dietary behaviours. Students will join one of our research programmes, but many also collaborate with researchers in other programmes and beyond. You will be registered with the University of Cambridge and belong to one of its colleges.

Studentships commence in October 2023. These are 3-year positions if you have a Masters degree, or equivalent training, in an appropriate scientific discipline. Opportunities also exist for 1+3-year funding to undertake the University’s MPhil in Population Health Sciences in your first year. We provide diverse research training opportunities and training in transferable academic skills. The academic requirement for entry is a first or upper second class degree or equivalent.

PhD studentship funding is available from a number of sources. MRC studentship funding covers university fees (at the Home student level) and a stipend (currently £20.00 per annum) – please see our website for criteria on university fees status. You can also select other funding sources when you apply via the university’s Postgraduate Admissions Portal (see: We strongly advise that you select all funding sources for which you are eligible. We also encourage students to consider funding sources outside the university.

How to Apply


To apply, please visit the University’s Postgraduate Admissions Portal Please upload a full CV, two academic references, and a covering letter detailing: i) whether you are eligible for Home or Overseas


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