PhD Studentship: Nature of replication: Natural History Museums & the circulation of casts and models

6 March 2018


Applications are invited for an AHRC-funded PhD studentship (Ref: 1716483) offered as a collaborative doctoral award between the Oxford University Museum of Natural History and the UCL Institute of Archaeology. The deadline for applications is 23 April 2018.

In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, plaster casts, models and replicas were key to sharing unique and rare specimens between museums for scientific scrutiny, museum display and as ‘backups’ to the originals. In many types of museum the status of such materials in the hierarchy of objects was low and, as studies in classical archaeology have shown, contested. The status of such reproductions in the context of natural history museums has never been evaluated, but is likely to have operated differently from examples in the art historical world. This project will address this lacunae in scholarship.

The project will be jointly supervised by Alice Stevenson (UCL) and Mark Carnall (OUMNH) and the student will be expected to spend time at both UCL and Oxford University Museum of Natural History, as well as becoming part of the wider cohort of CDP funded students across the UK.

This project links to current research being undertaken by OUMNH in collaboration with Warwick Manufacturing Group (University of Warwick) to explore the use of the next generation of 3D visualisation and prototyping in museum spaces, together with the qualitative and quantitative evaluation of user experience.

Any enquiries about the studentship and the application process may be directed to the Institute's Graduate Programmes Administrator, Lisa Daniel.

Each year the AHRC provides funding from the UK Government to support research and postgraduate study in the arts and humanities. The AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Partnerships (CDP) scheme enables non-HEI organisations with a strong track record in the Collaborative Doctoral Award (CDA) scheme, and supporting other doctoral students, to be allocated a cohort of CDA studentships for three academic years for which they will then be able to nominate projects with academic partners.