University of Exeter, Mphil/PhD


The Centre for Maritime Historical Studies was the first of its kind in a British university and seeks to promote research into economic, social, political, naval and environmental aspects of the British maritime past from the earliest times to the present day, drawing also on European and international experience. Staff from the Centre supervise PhD students and are willing to provide supervision in the following areas of research:

  • maritime history from the Middle Ages to today;
  • business history and maritime trade;
  • port cities and communities;
  • mariners welfare and education;
  • naval history from the Middle Ages to the present day;
  • naval leadership from the late 17th century to the mid 20th century;
  • British naval administration and logistics;
  • Mediterranean maritime history from the Middle Ages to the 18th century;
  • African maritime history and port cities.

As a research student, you will be able to draw on excellent resources including the Exeter Local Maritime Archives Project database.

The Centre holds termly research seminars (in conjunction with the Society for Nautical Research), an annual international Maritime History Conference and a twice-yearly Strategic Policy Studies Group symposium (with associated publication).

Visit the Centre for Maritime Historical Studies website to find our more about our research interests and activities.

Research topic and proposal

If you are considering studying for an MPhil or PhD, you will need to pinpoint the topic in which you wish to undertake your research and identify members of academic staff who specialise in this area and can offer you supervision. Visit our staff profiles or research supervision web pages for more information about individual research interests.

Once you have identified your research area, you will need to prepare a research proposal which outlines the specific area you wish to study and submit this with your application.

Guidelines on submitting an MPhil/PhD application, including guidelines on writing a research proposal, can be found on our dedicated How to apply pages.

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