• Question: how much money do you earn?

    Asked by 11hobsonp to Daniela, Hannah, Ian, Jono, Mark on 20 Jun 2013.
    • Photo: Hannah Brotherton

      Hannah Brotherton answered on 20 Jun 2013:

      Hi 11hobsonp,
      Not enough 😛
      Nah I’m just kidding… Every PhD student gets a minimum amount for money a year. So its around £1100 a month. But in some places like London, where living is much more expensive, they get a bit more per month.
      Also we get around £1500 a year to spend on traveling to lectures in other universities to meet with other students and teachers.

      Patience and hard-work really paid off in the end. I used to go to uni and then work part-time in the evening in shops and restaurants. But now I am really lucky that I work full-time as a PhD student.

    • Photo: Ian Wilson

      Ian Wilson answered on 20 Jun 2013:

      Hi 11hobsonp,

      I’m the same as Hannah – I’m a PhD student so I get £13,300 in a year.
      I’ve earned some extra money by helping out in practical lab sessions for undergraduate students and by running exams, but these are optional.

      The money we get is a decent amount to live on and to be able to save a little bit, though we work very hard for it!

      And, as Hannah says, we do get extra money to travel to places for conferences and things like that. The amount we get depends on how much money our bosses have really. Mine’s got more money than he knows what to do with so I’ve been to Canada, America twice, India and London so far!



    • Photo: Mark Hodson

      Mark Hodson answered on 20 Jun 2013:

      Hi 11hobsonp,

      in some ways I’m probably in a position that Jono, Ian, Hannah and Daniela are aiming for as I have a permanent academic job at a University.

      When I was a postgrad. I got about £4000 a year which was enough to live on in 1991-94 but less than PhD students get paid now, even taking into account inflation.

      These days as a professor my take home pay is £3480 a month after tax. The University also has an excellent pension scheme.

      However no one gets into science for the money. My wife is a lawyer and she tells me that I earn as much money as a London-based lawyer who has been qualified for a few years (whereas I have been qualified for 18 years).

      All told though I’d rather be a scientist at a University, you get a lot more freedom to do stuff you’re interested in than having a “proper ” job.



    • Photo: Daniela Plana

      Daniela Plana answered on 20 Jun 2013:

      Hi 11hobsonp!

      I’m somewhere in between the others who have answered… I already have finished my PhD, so I’m not a student anymore, but nowhere near as experienced as Mark! As he says, his job is essentially what I aim to do eventually… I earn about £2k a month after taxes and I do have the good pension scheme that Mark mentioned.

      Although it’s enough to live well, it’s unlikely you’ll become rich by doing science… however, we have more fun and working at a University is a lot more flexible than other “proper” jobs in terms of your working hours and such!


    • Photo: Jono Bone

      Jono Bone answered on 20 Jun 2013:


      I’m a PhD student like Ian and Hannah but because I live in london I get a little bit more money than them to help pay for the expensive rent and transport. I find its plenty of money to live on and do what fun things I want to do. I also get 1000 pounds a year to spend on research and conferences which really isn’t much so I have to scrounge any other money from different grants and bursaries offered by conferences and my university.