DPhil in Public Policy

Do you want to help improve governments by providing them with research-based evidence? Are you motivated to carry out in-depth academic research that can make a positive contribution to public policy?

Aims of the DPhil

The DPhil in Public Policy aims to:

  • Hone your research skills in ways that are relevant to policy-focused research.
  • Develop your interdisciplinary understanding of policy challenges.
  • Equip you to be able to design and undertake original research which makes a real contribution to the development and/or analysis of public policy.
  • Enhance your ability to communicate your research findings to the policy community in a way that ensures real world impact.
  • Enable you to present a lucid and scholarly thesis for examination.

During your DPhil, as well as honing your research skills and developing your interdisciplinary understanding of policy challenges, you will also enhance your ability to communicate your research findings to the policy community in a way that ensures real-world impact.

You will have the opportunity to attend an impressive set of seminars within the Blavatnik School and across the University of Oxford, where you will learn in a multidisciplinary environment and present your research proposals to relevant audiences. You will also benefit from being part of an extraordinary network of peers to share ideas and advice, while meeting and interacting with prominent public policy practitioners who will help you root your research into practical issues.

After the DPhil

We welcomed our first DPhil students in 2014 and we have just celebrated the first graduations. We will be following our first DPhil graduates with interest over the next few months. However, we already know that our DPhil, with its emphasis on the real world application of policy knowledge, specifically prepares you for a successful, high-level career in public service, government, non-governmental organisations, as well as academic and the private sector.

Oxford graduates are highly sought-after by employers across the world and the career prospects for you after completing your DPhil in Public Policy are excellent. At the Blavatnik School you will develop the skills required to succeed in your career as well as benefit from a programme of career-focused events. Collaborating with your fellow students and faculty will help you discover career paths and opportunities in public service and academia. We also offer an outstanding programme of speaker events at which many visitors discuss their careers, and outside of the School there are many events organised by departments, centres, societies and colleges – all of these provide opportunities to meet with global specialists and develop your network of contacts.

You will be interacting and sharing opinions with fellow DPhil students and other Blavatnik School students – forging relationships that will last well beyond the time you will spend at the School. As your career develops, being part of this community will mean you have a shared learning experience with like-minded peers throughout the world.

The Blavatnik School’s alumni form a close-knit community providing them with social connections, professional guidance and a trusted source of advice. These connections also serve as powerful reminders for all of us of our shared commitment to public service and our desire to make a positive, real difference in the world.


Student experiences
DPhil in numbers

We have 7 new DPhil students in 2019, from 6 different countries. Since our first intake of DPhil students in 2014, we have welcomed students from 21 countries.