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.
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
- 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 academic staff include leading experts in the major sub-fields of Anthropology.
Past research topics
- "The practices of childhood: Coproducing child health in Aotearoa New Zealand" | Supervised by Associate Professor Susanna Trnka and Professor Judith Littleton
- "Gender in a commodifying world: Recognition, emotions and market women's agency in the Goroka marketplace, Papua New Guinea" | Supervised by Dr Mark Busse and Professor Cris Shore
- "He ana, he whakairo: Examining Māori belief of place through the archaeological context of rock art" | Supervised by Professor Simon Holdaway
- "Dynamics of agricultural development in prehistoric Samoa: The case of Ofu Island" | Supervised by Professor Melinda Allen and Professor Thegn Ladefoged
- "Identifying critical growth periods using enamel hypoplasia" | Supervised by Professor Judith Littleton
- "Tales of genetic imperfection in an age of designer babies: An ethnography of children diagnosed with MCAD and related disorders" | Supervised by Professor Julie Park
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
For help with planning your degree and enrolling in your courses, please contact the Arts Students' Centre.
If you would like to discuss your plans for your doctoral research you can contact our PhD Adviser.