Our team


 

  

 Over Michaelmas term, we are going to welcome you as warmly as before, but remotely. Please join our Zoom drop-in sessions or book a scheduled appointment.

When you join the drop-in session, you will be put in a waiting room.

Speak to the team

Join the meetings with the team if you have any questions about your degree (e.g. about registration, progression, absences, fieldwork, etc).

Drop ins with the team 

Speak to the PhD Academy Director - Prof Rita Astuti

 Join Rita, the PhD Academy Director, for an informal chat about any aspect of your studies and experience at LSE. If you wish to meet her with other students, you will be able to join the meeting together.

Please note that Rita’s Zoom meetings will stop at the end of Michaelmas term and will resume on January 11. If you wish to speak to her during this time, you can send her an email and she’ll set up a meeting at a mutually convenient time.

Book an Appointment

If you have a confidential query please submit an enquiry or email phdacademy@lse.ac.uk to contact the team to book an appointment

Please include your name and ID number, availability and brief outline of your query so an appropriate member of the team will be available for your appointment.

You can still  submit an enquiry or email phdacademy@lse.ac.uk to contact the team

 

The PhD Academy Team 

Professor Rita Astuti
Director, PhD Academy and LSE ESRC Doctoral Training Centre

 You can contact Rita to discuss any aspect of your experience as a PhD student. Email her at r.astuti@lse.ac.uk or use her Zoom drop-in sessions - see details above

Marcus Cerny
Deputy Director, PhD Academy

Marcus is available to provide advice on all aspects of your PhD journey

 

Matthew Brack
PhD Academy Assistant Director

Shuma Begum
Research Degrees Officer

Matt and Shuma provide advice on all aspects of your registration and progression

 

Loraine Evans
Events and Communications Manager

Faith Corby
Events and Communications Officer

Loraine and Faith look after the training programme and send out regular communications

 

Kirsty Rawlings
Research Partnerships Manager

Sangeeta Banerjee
Research Partnerships Officer    

Kirsty and Sangeeta provide support to students funded by the ESRC and AHRC

 

More information about the Team

Professor Rita Astuti

Director, PhD Academy and LSE ESRC Doctoral Training Partnership
r.astuti@lse.ac.uk   

I am a Professor in the Anthropology Department at the LSE, where I was a PhD student some years back… On and off, for the past 30 years, I have done ethnographic research in a small fishing village in Madagascar. In my work, I explore how people experience and think about family and kinship, how they understand group and gender identity, how they represent death and the ancestors. To address some of these issues, I have collaborated with developmental psychologists, and I have since worked to promote a closer integration between the study of culture and mind.

 At the LSE, I have supervised many Anthropology PhD students; this is the aspect of my academic job that I enjoy the best, because that is how I learn the most. As Director of the PhD Academy, I have responsibility for enhancing the PhD research environment, for overseeing the activities of the Academy’s team, and for liaising with funders. In addition, I have the privilege of meeting and exchanging ideas with PhD students from across the School. 

See further details Rita Astuti, Department of Anthropology

Marcus Cerny
Deputy Director, PhD Academy
M.W.Cerny@lse.ac.uk

I joined the LSE PhD Academy in 2016 having worked in Higher Education for over 20 years at UCL, Imperial College and SOAS, including 14 years in HE management. Most recently I was responsible for postgraduate research support at SOAS, where I was involved in the establishment and running of the SOAS Doctoral School.

I support the Director in the strategic development of the PhD Academy with responsibility for the effective operational management of Academy activity. I look forward to working with students and colleagues throughout the School as we aim to provide the best graduate school experience for doctoral students and to support postgraduate research provision across LSE. I am also the Secretary of the Research Degrees Subcommittee.

Matthew Brack
PhD Academy Assistant Director
m.brack@lse.ac.uk

I graduated with a BSc (Hons) degree in Chemistry in 1993. I joined LSE in 1997 and have been Assistant Director of the PhD Academy   since its inception in 2016. Prior to this I was Deputy Manager of the Research Degrees Unit. I advise staff and students on all aspects of research degree procedures and regulations including the MPhil/PhD examination process, registration, appeals, tuition fees, and difficult cases.

I also compile statistics and data for internal and external purposes, for instance the School's submission and completion rates, REF student data and ESRC/AHRC submission rate surveys.  I am also the Secretary of the Doctoral Programme Directors Forum.

Shuma Begum
Research Degrees Officer
s.s.begum@lse.ac.uk / submit an enquiry

I joined the PhD Academy in 2018, prior to which I worked in several Higher Education Institutions.  As Research Degrees Officer my main area of responsibility is the MPhil/PhD examination process. Alongside this I am responsible for processing all changes in registration status, including requests to undertake fieldwork and any periods of interruption.

Loraine Evans
Events and Communications Manager
l.evans1@lse.ac.uk 

I graduated, as a mature student, with a BA (Hons) in English in 2005 and joined LSE in 2011 from the London Business School. I spent a year with the Department of Mathematics as their Research Administrator and joined the the Research Degrees Unit in April 2012.

I have been with the PhD Academy since its inception in 2016. I support the  Director of the PhD Academy in the administration and development of the events programme for PhD Students. I am responsible for developing networks with partner institutions alongside managing communications across a range of media. I also act as Secretary to the Research Students Consultative Forum.

Faith Corby
Events and Communications Officer
F.Corby@lse.ac.uk  / submit an enquiry  

I graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Biomedical science in 2013 from Kingston University. Prior to joining the LSE in 2016 I worked at Kingston University looking after MSc students in Engineering.  I am responsible for our webpages, communications and social media feeds and support the running of the PhD Academy events programme. Alongside this I support the Research Partnerships Manager when required. 

Kirsty Rawlings
Research Partnerships Manager
k.rawlings@lse.ac.uk  

I graduated with a BA (Hons) in History in 1993. I joined LSE in 2014 as Senior Administrator to the Doctoral Training Centre (DTC) having previously worked in the voluntary, education and public sectors in contract compliance and administration.

I have been with the PhD Academy since its inception in 2016. I manage processes to ensure compliance with ERSC reporting and accreditation requirements.  As the LSE ESRC nominated contact I am responsible for developing relationships with the wider DTP network.  I also provide advice, guidance and support to students, academics and administrative staff on key Research Council initiatives, workshops, conferences and events.  I am the lead for the LSE DTP Training Needs Analysis and the ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowships recruitment processes.

Sangeeta Banerjee                                                                                                                            Research Partnerships Officer                                                                                              S.Banerjee4@lse.ac.uk / submit an enquiry                                                      

I joined the PhD Academy in 2018 having previously worked in a number of Higher Education Institutions as well as in the voluntary and private sectors. As Research Partnerships Officer my main role is to support Research Council initiatives and activities including the ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowships recruitment processes and ESRC reporting and accreditation requirements. In addition I also support key functions of the PhD Academy Team in delivering its student-facing activities to PhD students, events and communications, dealing with PhD queries and the delivery of administration of processes around registration and examination.