Back to top

PhD: Developing a framework to increase diversity in genomic studies

Qualification: PhD

Department: Health Sciences

Application deadline: 2 December 2022

Start date: 25 September 2023

Primary Supervisor: Prof Kamlesh Khunti (University of Leicester)

Secondary Supervisor(s): Dr Chiara Batini (University of Leicester), Dr Ash Routen (University of Leicester)

Genomic epidemiology and public health genomic studies are primarily based on individuals of European ancestry, which constitute 86% of all research participants, a much larger proportion than is present in the global population. This bias has important consequences. First and foremost, it directly results in genomic and potentially health inequality. The potential benefits of genomic research, such as improved understanding of causes of diseases, early diagnosis, and improved and targeted clinical care, may in fact not apply to many underserved populations such as ethnic minorities. In addition, the Eurocentric bias impacts on the discovery power for all participants. Several clinically-relevant genetic variants have been identified only when looking at specific populations groups, highlighting biological mechanisms of relevance for all patients.

The purpose of this PhD studentship therefore, will be to further our understanding on diversity and inclusion in genomic research, with the aim of developing a framework to overcome the current biases.

The student will be embedded within a team of experts in equality, diversity and inclusion, ethnic minority health, genomics and evolutionary biology, and will receive training in a broad range of both quantitative and qualitative data analysis techniques.

Entry Requirements

  • Entry requirements Candidates applying to the four-year PhD should hold or expect to hold an undergraduate degree or a Master's degree in a relevant subject or overseas equivalent
  • University of Leicester English language requirements apply


UK/ International* applicants may apply.

* International students please refer to the Funding section.

Enquiries to Sarah Grey

How to apply

To apply please refer to the advice and application link at:

Funding Notes

Wellcome Trust Studentship funding:

  • Four Years Fees at UK rates
  • Wellcome Trust stipend for the four years of the PhD*

*PhD Stipend Year 1 £19,919; Year 2 £21,542; Year 3 £23,298; Year 4 £23,997
We offer international fee waivers for two students per year from low and middle income countries.
*International students awarded the UK tuition fee waiver/stipend studentship will need to provide evidence that they can pay the difference between UK fees and international fees for the duration of their studies.

Published on: 24 Nov 2022