Doctoral study in Anthropology

Why study with us?

We were placed 37th in the world for Archaeology and 48th in the world for Anthropology in the 2021 QS World University Rankings by Subject.

As a doctoral candidate, you'll benefit from: financial support for research expenses through PReSS funding; high-calibre supervision practices; and the networks and expertise of our world-class academic researchers.

Research opportunities

We offer diverse opportunities for PhD study in the four major sub-fields of Anthropology. We welcome research proposals in areas such as:


  • Ancient Australia
  • Neolithic economies of Egypt
  • Archaeological fauna and environment in the Pacific
  • Ancient society and material culture in Polynesia and Melanesia
  • New Zealand archaeology


  • Osteology of past lives
  • Historical epidemiology
  • Human growth and maturation
  • Primatology

Social Anthropology

  • Food security, society in New Guinea
  • Gender issues in the Pacific
  • Religion and Pacific peoples
  • Health and violence in cultural perspective


  • Modern musics of Aotearoa and the Pacific
  • Bollywood music
  • Asian music diaspora

Our people

Our academic staff include leading experts in the major sub-fields of Anthropology.

Past research topics

Experience doctoral study

Best thesis places children as participants in their own health

Dr Julie Spray spent a year back at primary school for her PhD in Anthropology, which was awarded a Vice-Chancellor's Prize for Best Doctoral Thesis in 2018.

Scholarships and awards

There are several scholarships you may be eligible for when you decide to pursue your PhD in Anthropology:

Help and advice

Our friendly staff will provide you with advice on enrolling in your PhD at Student Hubs.

If you would like to discuss your plans for your doctoral research you can contact our PhD Adviser.

Apply for doctoral study