The University of Cambridge in the UK invites applications for the Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholars Programme in the 2022/23 academic year.

The Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholars Programme has been established in February 2019 thanks to an extraordinarily generous donation from the David and Claudia Harding Foundation, the biggest single gift made to a university in the UK by a British philanthropist.

Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholarships provide outstanding PhD students with life-changing opportunities to research and study at the University of Cambridge. These fully-funded Scholarships are available to the most talented students in any discipline, from all parts of the UK and the world.


At least 25 PhD students will receive a Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholarship annually creating a cohort of the strongest PhD students in any given year across a diverse range of subject areas.

A significant proportion of the Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholarships (25-33% each year) will be at St Catharine’s College. The larger group at St Catharine’s College reflects David Harding’s previous association with the College. However, the remainder will be distributed so as to guarantee excellent postgraduate students across the whole Collegiate University.

Worth of Award

A Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholarship covers the following costs for PhD students:

  • the University Composition Fee at the appropriate rate for the duration of your course
  • a maintenance allowance (living costs) of £18,000 per year for the three-year duration of your PhD research, with the option to receive maintenance funding in a fourth year, should this be required
  • a research allowance (for expenditure on research-related activities and consumables, for example, books, fieldwork and conference attendance) of up to £6,000 for the three-year duration of your PhD research


  • Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholarships are available to candidates applying to pursue a full-time residential PhD course of study at the University of Cambridge.
  • Scholarships are open to PhD students of any nationality and in any discipline.

You will automatically be considered for a Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholarship if:

  • You complete the funding section of the Graduate Application form when making your application for PhD study via the Applicant Portal, and you apply by the funding deadline for your course.
  • You go on to be highly scored in the Postgraduate Funding Competition by the Department or Faculty to which you have applied.
  • You have applied to one of the following eligible Colleges:
  • Christ’s College
  • Churchill College
  • Clare College
  • Clare Hall
  • Darwin College
  • Downing College
  • Fitzwilliam College
  • Girton College
  • Homerton College
  • Hughes Hall
  • Jesus College
  • Lucy Cavendish College
  • Magdalene College
  • Murray Edwards College
  • Newnham College
  • Queens’ College
  • Robinson College
  • Selwyn College
  • Sidney Sussex College
  • St Catharine’s College
  • St Edmund’s College
  • Trinity Hall
  • Wolfson College.
  • If you apply to a College that is not listed above, this will not preclude you from being considered for a Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholarship. However, please be aware that you might be asked to change Colleges in order to take up the Scholarship.

How to Apply

  • You can apply for admission to a PhD course, a College place and various sources of funding via the University’s Graduate Applicant Portal.
  • Full details can be found on the Graduate Admissons website.
  • When making your online application, please ensure you indicate that you wish to be considered for funding and complete the funding section.
  • Applicants who do not complete this section will not be considered for Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholarships.

Deadline: The application deadline is determined by the funding deadline for the PhD course you are applying for and will be either December 2, 2021, or January 6, 2022.


Click here for more details and to apply