Interdisciplinary Area Studies

Pathway Leader:


Kristin Roth-Ey

Prospective candidates can contact the pathway leader or team members for further information.

Training Routes

See table below for training routes and institutions available for this pathway.  

ESRC studentships at the UBEL DTP are structured around the following routes: 1+3, +3, 2+3 and +4 funding. Please note that not all routes are available in all institutions or pathways. Click here for further information on funding routes. 

PathwayInstitutionTraining Route (1+3)(2+3)(+3)(+4)
Interdisciplinary Area Studies UCLPolitics and Economics of East Europex x 
Interdisciplinary Area Studies UCLEast European Studiesx x 

The pathway includes one institution with specialist and highly-regarded interdisciplinary expertise on the study of central, south and eastern Europe and Eurasia (School of Slavonic and East European Studies, UCL). Researchers work across the social sciences and humanities, from strongly quantitative fields such as economics, through branches of politics and sociology, to history and literature, with an increasing focus on questions of gender equality, LGBTQ+ rights, minority discourses and transnational interaction. There are strong synergies with work in other UBEL pathways (e.g., Gender and sexuality) and groups (e.g., Diversity, communities, countries and economies).

Research is clustered in two Centres:

  • the FRINGE (Fluidity, Resistance, Invisibility, Neutrality, Gray Zones, Elusiveness) Centre for the Study of Social and Cultural Complexity challenges disciplinary frameworks through investigation into activities that resist clear classification and quantification. Themes explored in FRINGE include: the ‘Global Informality Project’; the interface between power and aesthetics with particular reference to the ‘Global East’; and ‘(Bio)Political Economies: Capitalism, Socialism, and After’.
  • UCL Centre for Comparative Studies of Emerging Economies focuses on comparative political economy, with emphasis on the emerging economies of Central and Eastern Europe and the lessons they generate for other countries in Asia, Latin America and Africa. Research focuses on: institutions, innovation, and growth; financial markets, banking and financial fragility; social exclusion, political participation and migration; natural resources, energy, and security; and statistics.


The pathway also offers a range of research seminars and groups that cut across disciplines, providing a forum for researchers from diverse disciplines and backgrounds. These include: Russian Studies, Russian Cinema, Study of Central Europe, South-east European studies, Politics and sociology, post-Soviet press group and a research cluster on Polish migration.

Studentship Competitions

UBEL offers fully funded and co-funded ESRC studentships. Follow link below to discover current opportunities.